Beware of ‘Ugly Betty’

An office affair with an ugly gal can get you in plenty of hot water
An office affair with an ugly gal can get you in plenty of hot water
If you wanna be happy
For the rest of your life,
Never make a pretty woman your wife,
So from my personal point of view,
Get an ugly girl to marry you.

So went the lyrics of Jimmy Soul’s 1963 No. 1 smash single, “If You Wanna Be Happy.” The song was adopted from a calypso number “Ugly Woman” issued earlier the same year.

“An ugly woman cooks her meals on time,” the vocalist exhorts. “She’ll always give you peace of mind.”

But don’t be fooled, writes columnist Manabu Fujimura in Nikkan Gendai (Jan. 14). And more’s the point, an office affair with an ugly gal can get you in plenty of hot water.

“The biggest mistake is to think that she’ll be easy to dump when you get tired of her. When office ladies are in the midst of an affair, it’s quite common for them to gab about matters with their peers on the job.

“And there’s an old saying that goes, ‘a beauty will conceal romance but a tashime (ugly woman) will make a show of it.’

“So it’s dangerous to think that, just because a plain woman will roll over easily, she can be just as easily discarded,” Fujimura writes. “But actually the opposite is the case.

“Sure, with a downcast gaze she might promise, at the start of the affair, ‘I won’t cause you any trouble,’ and you’ll go along with it thinking there won’t be any problems.

“But the type of female who looks a man straight in the eyes while talking can change suddenly,” warns Fujimura. “She might even directly confront her lover’s wife; matters might even lead to bloodshed in the office,” he warns.

Say man!
Hey baby!
I saw your wife the other day!
Yeah?
Yeah, an’ she’s ug-leeee!
Yeah, she’s ugly, but she sure can cook, baby!
Yeah, alright!

Office love affairs are dangerous bridges to cross, and can result in dismissal. Caution is definitely warranted, the writer concludes. (K.S.)

(Lyrics above © S.P.Q.R./London Records)

Source: “Busu wo erabu na,” Nikkan Gendai (Jan. 14, page 6)

Note: Brief extracts from Japanese vernacular media in the public domain that appear here were translated and summarized under the principle of “fair use.” Every effort has been made to ensure accuracy of the translations. However, we are not responsible for the veracity of their contents. The activities of individuals described herein should not be construed as “typical” behavior of Japanese people nor reflect the intention to portray the country in a negative manner. Our sole aim is to provide examples of various types of reading matter enjoyed by Japanese.

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