Boys, Girls, and the Platonic Work Marriage

Okay, so for the last time, Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence are not, nor have ever been a thing.

In an interview with Howard Stern on his SiriusXM radio show, Cooper cleared up any/all speculation that he and J-Law have ever been anything more than best buds.

“It just didn’t happen,” he said. “It’s not the way we are together.”

So, I mean, just a massive explanation, you know? But at the same time, why should B-Coop elaborate on an element of his personal life that’s completely N/A? Men and women can totally  just be friends. Especially men and women who are cast together because of a director (David O. Russell) who really likes the way they work onscreen. (Probably because nothing has ever happened.)

But I’ve been talking with my friends recently about this, because the question of men and women being friends and/or not being friends (because the idea that they can, can also seem like a myth) comes up more and more, the older you get. Shows like The Office, Mad Men, and even Parks and Recreation have helped perpetuate the myth that true love exists at work, always, and that’s entirely not true.

Does it happen sometimes? Sure. When I worked at American Eagle back in 2009, I was super in love with my co-worker who was very good at flirting with me despite the fact that he had a girlfriend. And while nothing happened/happened, enough emotional stuff did that it became difficult to work together, and the last time I ever spoke to him, it was after he transferred to a different store. (Not because of me, by the way — he got a promotion.) In fact, everyone I’ve ever met has had work crushes or work flings or work somethings, but the same amount of people — including myself — have also had work friends. Like, dudes from work or from the same industry who are pals. No sexual tension, nothing. Which makes it super awkward when/if people ever ask if anything’s happened. (Especially since you can’t say outright, “GOD NO” because it comes off as super-insulting.)

So let’s just sit down and take a sip and accept that Bradley Cooper’s “it just didn’t happen” isn’t code for “oh, but it will [wink].” Sometimes men and women can just be friends. Sometimes they can’t. But for the most part, they’ll usually mention something if whatever’s going on is something to write home about, like, in some way. Or, they’ll overcompensate in hopes of throwing off the troops. Or, neither. Who cares? Because let me tell you that nothing kills a guy/girl friendship like being asked all the time if you’ve ever hooked up.

Tags: Anne T. Donahue, bradley cooper, Jennifer Lawrence

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