Kirstie Alley: Marital Guru or Relentless Book Hawker?John Cave Osborne
Kirstie Alley may best be known for the dramatic fluctuations in her weight, but it seems she’s also quite the marital expert. Not too shabby for an actress / game-show contestant / author.
And it’s in the latter capacity in which Ms. Alley is currently doubling as a relationship guru. You see, in promoting her book — a tawdry tell-all entitled the Art of Men — the Cheers alumni has copped to falling in love with other men despite the fact she was married at the time.
One of them was John Travolta whom she met in 1989 while filming Look Who’s Talking. Alley described the former Sweathog as the “love of her life.” Even so, she somehow managed to keep these feelings at bay and was able to honor her marriage by not acting upon them. But it wasn’t easy.
“Believe me,” she told Barbara Walters, “it took everything that I had inside, outside, whatever, to not run off and marry John.”
This wasn’t the first time Alley had eyes for a co-star. Just two years earlier, in 1987, she fell for Patrick Swayze whom she met on the set of North and South. She told Entertainment Tonight:
“[Swayze and I] did not have an affair. But, again, I think what I did was worse. Because I think when you fall in love with someone when you’re married, you jeopardize your own marriage and their marriage. It’s doubly bad.”
See? I told you she was a marital expert. As such, we should all pay close attention to the nuggets of wisdom she dispenses. So if you’re bonded by the vows of holy matrimony, and you’ve fallen in love with someone who is, in fact, not your spouse, please note: this is a bad thing.
You know what else is a bad thing? Taking a big sh!t on the institution of marriage. And that’s exactly what I think this Alley has done. Oh, I know — she’s spinning these shocking confessions into a debate of sorts; which is worse? An emotional affair or a physical one?
But I simply can’t go down that path, because I’m stuck on something else.
Alley has smeared the marriage of a dead man — something she had no right to do. How do you think Swayze’s widow, Lisa Niemi, feels about it? I mean, according to Alley herself, she and Niemi are still friends. In fact, Niemi asked Alley to speak at Swayze’s 2009 funeral.
So don’t you think it’s possible that Alley’s version of what happened between Swayze and her a quarter century ago left a mark on Lisa? Don’t you think it’s possible that this entire deal has left the poor woman with a million questions? This shocking confession which Alley dropped during a nationally televised interview in hopes of selling more books?
Because I do.
Oh, I know. I’m sure some will be of the opinion “well, Swayze’s wife deserves to know the truth.” But that’s just it — is it the truth? I mean, we can’t exactly ask Patrick, can we?
But, hey, maybe it is true. And maybe Lisa Niemi already knew about it. After all, marriage has many ups and downs. Perhaps 1987 was a “down.” Perhaps this alleged emotional affair was something which Swayze and Lisa Niemi found a way to work through. Maybe they fought like hell to save their marriage — the one that survived until the day Patrick died.
Would that make Alley’s salacious, book-hawking gossip any more excusable? My answer is no.
Look, I get it. I’m sure it’s tough being Kirstie Alley. I mean, one decade you’re a hottie-potati actress on an iconic sitcom. The next, you’re better known for being overweight. And I can see the need to reinvent herself. Which, to a large extent, she’s done. And I can also understand why she’d want to cash in on a book while she’s still at least somewhat relevant. I mean, the tawdry-tell-all genre isn’t exactly my style, but, hey, whatever. Write away, Kirstie. Tell us all the shocking sh!t you want. And demean your own marriage with these shocking confessions, especially if you think it’ll sell more books.
But don’t run off and demean someone else’s. Especially if that someone doesn’t have the opportunity to do what many in Swayze’s position would want to do: defend his marriage. Because no matter what may have happened in the past, the institution of marriage is an impossibly sacred one, and as such, it’s also one that is most worthy of defending.
Irony alert: In 2010, Alley engaged in a bizarre Twitter feud with Joy Behar (whom Alley dubbed Joy Bewhore) pertaining to Behar’s coverage of Tiger Wood’s marital indiscretions. HuffPo wrote something about it.
“Cheating,” Alley tweeted, “is between a husband and wife. Not TMZ and Joy Bewhore…God, I want to bash her in the vagina with her microphone.”
So if, indeed, she and Swayze had some intense emotional affair — and to be frank, I have my doubts — wouldn’t that, too, be between a husband and a wife as opposed to Alley and the guy from Entertainment Tonight?
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not mad enough to go on some angry Twitter diatribe about it. And I don’t want to bash Alley in her vagina with a microphone, either. I just want her to go away.
And to leave the institution of marriage alone while she’s at it.
Read more of JCO Multiplied:
NYC Nanny Killings: Personalizing the Tragedy
7 Things You Should NOT Discuss With the Parents of Triplets
How the DVR Ruined My Vacation in Specific and Parenting in General
15 Things Every Stepparent Should Know
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