When I received the press release from AshleyMadison.com, I initially assumed this was a website of a local baby photographer who takes those baby photos where they put your newborn inside a sepia-toned watermelon. Sounds like something an Ashley Madison would do. I was wrong.
In fact, AshleyMadison.com is a "dating site designed for people already in relationships." I had a million immediate questions. Starting with "But, wait--huh?" and progressing to, "Hold on, what-the-definite-fuck, though?"
There was more. AshleyMadison.com "has decided to reveal the least faithful neighborhoods in D-town, based upon the 77,793 cheaters who live there. According to membership per capita, the most affair seekers live in Carrollton, with Garland, and Bryan Place rounding out the top three zip codes."
I asked their publicist -- who wished not to be named, so let's call her Jeff -- "Hey Jeff! As a dating site that helps people have secret affairs, what's the intent in sharing this info with The Entire Dallas?"
Jeff said, "As the world's leading extra-marital affair dating site with more than 24 million members, we're the leading authority on infidelity. We decided to share this data as part of our ongoing efforts for a few reasons."
My favorite of which was this one: "To provide a voice for those that can't speak out on their own behalf."
Who can't speak out, Jeff?
Jeff goes, "AshleyMadison.com provides a voice for adulterers who can't speak out themselves. ...mainstream media continues to portray the adulterer as someone who is either deviant or lacking morals - when the truth is quite the opposite. Our members are your everyday mom, dad, plumber, CEO and everything in between."
Well, obviously plumbers, Jeff.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the Observer's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Dallas's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
I wasn't getting enough clarity about this whole culture from Jeff, so I joined. My name was Vindicated Pants. My photo was Anne Hathaway at the 2014 Oscars. And my turn-on chosen from a menu? Erotic tickling. I don't know what it is, but it sounds like a) a fantastic cocktail and b) the perfect combination of words to get you out of jury duty.
The profiles on this website are surprisingly generic. It's mostly checking a box for your description, what you're looking for, and what extra curricular activities push your boner buttons. Most faces are censored. (Probably because more than 75% of their members, according to Jeff, are married.) One thing though: when you're picking your name, Dallasites, maybe don't use "WTW1999." Because then I know I went to high school with you, dude.
And things get much less anonymous.
And to the guy in Dallas calling himself Christian Grey: You're doing this exactly right. Whatever this is.