My paternal grandmother, Lila

They were at Rutgers together in the late thirties.

He was in med school and she was studying French and Chinese at Douglass with plans to work internationally as a translator.

They met at an out of town football game.

He brushed past her date to buy her ticket.

“You should go with me,” he said.

It was the second semester of her junior year, in 1942, when she realized.

She waited until May.

Until school was out I suppose, even though that meant she was already more than 5 months along.

They were wed, like the son she was carrying would later wed, not in a church as was custom, but with a Justice of the Peace in an out of state County Clerk’s office, the same one in fact.

The men’s lives, though challenged by the early addition of a wife and children, continued on course.

Both became officers.
Both became surgeons.

The women became alcoholics.

One died at the age of 55 in a fiery car crash.

The other at the age of 57, lung cancer.

The latter, twice divorced, found sobriety a decade before she died.

The former, still married, perished with her friends on a road trip.



The new gender gap is measured by well-being rather than wages. Although women as a group have made substantial gains in wages, educational attainment, and prestige over the past three decades, women are less happy today than their predecessors were in 1972, both in absolute terms and relative to men. (Source:  The Atlantic, Why Women Still Can’t Have It All)



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