The meringue of a woman, floating down an aisle lined with flowers in her signature colors. The groom in his tuxedo, waiting for her with tears in his eyes. The photographer, capturing those special moments to be treasured forever. From the engagement ring to the honeymoon, every nut and bolt used to construct that magical day comes with a hefty price tag. The American bride is being swindled, all in the name of “tradition.” But most of what we consider tradition is actually just marketing or a misunderstanding. Two recent books try to break through the fog that surrounds these rites and bring a dose of reality to the whole idea of living happily ever after.

According to reality television programming, it’s the bride that has gotten out of control. Watch the Bridezilla as she spends the equivalent… More…

What comes after Flickr, after Twitter? What comes after every stranger on the Internet has studied your wedding photos more closely than you have, after business associates know details of your life you previously reserved for priests and bartenders and you’re left wondering how to establish a degree of intimacy with your nearest and dearest that remains exclusive, unequalled, special?

How about the Siamese twins of toilets, the Twodaloo? As its name suggests, the Twodaloo is a commode for couples that consists of two regular toilets positioned side by side in reverse direction, so its users sit facing each other. A “modest privacy wall” blocks inadvertent views of laps, but provides no protection at all against the pinched facial contortions your beloved undergoes while struggling to evict last night’s pot roast.

If this sounds like a joke, it was — 10 years ago. That’s when Saturday Night Live featured a… More…

Let me just say that I am not Annie. Annie is not me. We actually have nothing in common. Well, except for two things: Dan, who is my husband, and Sylvester Stallone.

For me, it all started in bed. I spend a lot of time in bed — working on my laptop, reading, talking on the phone, eating all sorts of crumbly foods. We recently bought a cheap television for the bedroom, so that we can watch The Simpsons and Seinfeld while we eat dinner in bed. I find this heavenly.

Again, it all started in bed…

Dan and I are laying in bed, curled up on a cold Saturday morning, watching Ali Raps, the Muhammad Ali special on ESPN. Chuck D from Public Enemy stands in a boxing ring and talks to the camera, forcefully narrating the course of Ali’s career. The program is interspersed with notable people reciting… More…