|What girl in her right mind wouldn't imagine herself married to this super-hunk?|
I was born in the wrong time and place. A whole lot of people think that about themselves, but i think I have substance to back up my claims. Humor me for just a moment, please, and allow me to plead my case.
I'm not actually complaining so much about the era of my birth and life as I am complaining about the lack of synchronicity between my life and that of the late John F. Kennedy, Jr. The two of us would have been a fabulous couple, with the exception of the minor discrepancy of physical appearance. On a rating scale, JFK Jr. was clearly a perfect 10, while I'm closer to a 6.5 on a good day.
JFK Jr. had a perfectly decent wife in Carolyn Bessette Kennedy, and she had the stunning looks to go along with the Greek-God-like appearance of JFK Jr. There were signs, however, that she was cracking under the strain of being married to the world's most gorgeous man. I don't think his looks were the problem. The problem was more of the constant public scrutiny and the pursuit of paparazzi. It's something I believe i could have withstood, though we'll never know that for certain, because, barring my being an unwitting witness in a sensational media-frenzy-fueled crime, i will never be subjected to being hounded by the press.
For the moment, let us forget about Carolyn Bessette Kennedy. I do not intend that to be disrespectful or disparaging in any way. It's just that she's not germane in any way to the points I'm intending to make. I'm not out to convince anyone that I am superior to the person she was in any way, because I'm not. She was a lovely, intelligent, charming person. My point is merely that had I come along before she and had I somehow convinced JFK Jr. and his family (while no one in the family other than the man himself had the final say, I'd venture a guess that they were not shy in voicing their opinions, and that he listened and considered their opinions at some level) that I wasn't a wholly unsuitable fit to be conjoined legally with America's royal family, the union might possibly have worked.
There would have been a few obvious factors working against us, with an obvious socioeconomic gap between our families being an especially salient distinction. While a few of the Robert F. Kennedy offspring married into the solid middle class, it wasn't something either John or Caroline was likely to do. It wasn't even wealth per se as much as lifestyle. I suspect a Tier One Kennedy would be or would have been perfectly compatible with someone who came from a family of old wealth whose family somehow managed not to hang onto their money.
My parents aren't poor; how wealthy they are, I don't know, but I do know that they could choose never to work another day in their lives and would have the means to maintain a much more extravagant lifestyle than they've maintained thus far. Still, if my parents are wealthy, and it's probably a stretch to say that they are wealthy -- they're probably more likely firmly entrenched in America's upper middle class -- they're nouveau riche. While my paternal grandparents possibly have the wealth to place them in the upper-class, speaking strictly of finances, as we know it takes more than money to propel a person to the bona fide upper class, my grandfather's major windfall occurred after my father was on his own. Nothing my parents ever earned was as a result of a start-up fund from my grandparents. My dad didn't sell off stock to pay his college expenses; he had no stock to sell. What undergraduate tuition and expenses were not covered by academic scholarship money - and most of them were - my father paid back to his parents. My grandparents didn't contribute a cent to my father's medical school costs or living costs while in med school.
Speaking of lifestyles of the jet set, I've left the American continent three times: twice to travel to Hawaii and once to visit Ireland. My parents are world travelers, but they've traveled the world without us. Their plan was to provide us with sufficiently substantial educations that we would have the ability to earn the money to travel to anywhere one can travel. We have traveled, but on the North American continent. The majority of our trips were to visit relatives in the Utah-Idaho region, and in the neighboring states so that we could hit major tourist attractions while on those trips to visit relatives. We have hit both the northern and southern regions of the east coast as well. I don't wish to paint a picture of my parents plopping us in dismal central California and allowing us to rot. On the other hand, JFK Jr. probably spent as much time in airplanes as a child as I spent in automobiles. We grew up in different worlds.
On the other hand, I'm an adaptable person. If someone wanted to place me in a situation where my vacations were limited only by time and not by means, I could live with that. If I had to exist in a situation where paid help prepared most of the meals, cleared the dishes from the table, and handled the rest of the clean-up chores. that, too, would be within my scope of coping mechanisms. If I lived in a pristine home in which I didn't even know where the vacuum cleaner was kept, I wouldn't lose a great deal of sleep in worrying about the location of the vacuum cleaner or any other cleaning supplies. I might not even bother to look for them unless a child tossed his or her cookies on a day when the hired help was off. I could go with the flow where those things were concerned.
I would have completed medical school and the shortest possible residency. I would have affiliated myself with some medical facility in the vicinity of the residence JFK Jr.chose. If I woke up and it seemed like a nice day to practice medicine, I would have shown up. If, on the other hand, I looked out the window, saw the snow softly coming down, and decided that it was more a doughnuts-and-hot-chocolate-while-reading-or-watching-garbage-TV-or-playing-the-piano sort of day, I would simply have placed a call to the medical facility to let them know I would be unavailable for the day barring a major subway crash or disaster of epic 9/11 proportions. It's a lifestyle to which I could have grown accustomed.
The downside of public scrutiny and paparazzi is something with which I could have dealt. The tabloid headlines of "JFK JR. is to ditch Plain Jane Wife for Italian Supermodel" might have been a bit cumbersome, but overlooking such things is an acquired skill. I could have smiled and waved at the paparazzi each time I left my apartment. I wouldn't have felt the need to make enemies of them. I'm secure enough in who I am not to be worried about a few unfavorable photographs hitting the tabloids. Furthermore, I've spent most of my life competing with a sibling for attention. A bit of free attention tossed in my direction is not something that would have caused me undue stress.
A bit of strategically applied cosmetic surgery (not of the Michael Jackson variety; I'd still look like myself, but just a bit prettier) might have downplayed some of the headlines lamenting the discrepancy between our appearances. Beyond that, I'm comfortable with my girl-next-door appearance, if JFK jR.could have grown accustomed to it. After years of dating Hollywood starlets and the like, it would have been a step down in the department of aesthetics. (It probably would have been a step up in the intellectual department, though.) I'm never going to be the prettiest girl in a room, but I'll not usually be the ugliest one, either. And, when you get down to it, looks are highly superficial.
Height may have been a bit of an issue. I believe JFK Jr. was something like 6'3". I'm 5'3". Some people think tall men look "cute" with shorter women. Those people are a minority. I would have needed serious tutoring in walking in stilettos until I had perfected the art. The discrepancy in heights would then have been minimized, though never eliminated. I suppose I would have to tried to stand on a higher step for better photo opportunities.
Monogamy may possibly have been an issue, though I never read of rumors of dalliance once JFK Jr. was married. I know there were cases of marital infidelity among some of JFK Jr.'s cousins, but nothing that would compare with what was reported of their fathers. The genetic or learned behavioral tendency in that regard seems to have been diluted in the next generation. It's possible they don't even exceed the national average in that regard. Some of my professors and supervising physicians exhibit the same behaviors and none of them, to the best of my knowledge, are in any way related to the Kennedys.
It's a moot point. JFK, JR. was born in 1960, which is years before even my parents were born, while I came into this world in late 1994. It was never meant to be. Still, it's fun once in awhile to imagine how things might have been.