The discovery was pure fluke. I was sitting in our car in the motor lobby of the CNN Center waiting to go to the airport with him. I saw a woman step up to valet parking. I'd seen her from behind, walking into the hotel two hours earlier. This time I saw her face and realized I knew her, but when I called out her name, she foolishly hid behind a pillar. I knew. In my gut, I knew. I called Ted's office on the car phone, and when his assistant, Dee Woods, answered I put it to her straight: "He pulled a nooner today, didn't he." (This was Ted's term for lunchtime dalliances.) She stammered and denied it (probably thinking, Hey, Fonda, didn't I warn you?). She told me Ted was on his way down to meet me.

I remember sitting there, my heart pounding, my mind imploding. Ted was ashen when he got into the car, behind the wheel. That's when I began hitting him about the head and shoulders with the car phone. Simultaneously, part of me was thinking that I'd never seen anyone do this in a movie and what a good scene it would make. (Is it only actors who think this way?) Then I poured my water bottle over his head and, crying and shaking, said, "I sure hope it was a great f—, because you just blew it with me. I'm outta here." Hitting someone is not my style. But it also occurred to me that I'd never cared enough before to express this kind of balls-out rage. "Why did you do it? Haven't things been great with us?"

He stopped at a red light and put his face into his hands. "Yes. Yes. I love you madly and our sex is great. I don't know. I guess it''s like a tic"—that's actually the word he used—"something I've gotten used to doing. I've always needed a backup in case something happens between us." Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.

"Well, you've succeeded in making sure something would happen and now you'll be stuck with your backup. I hope you're happy."

Copyright © 2005 by Jane Fonda. From the book My Life So Far by Jane Fonda, published by Random House, an imprint of Random House Publishing, Inc. Reprinted with permission.


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