Marriage is an institution that attracts many a cliche. Infact I’d wager that there are more cliches floating around about marriage than any other topic ( except for maybe death and taxes.). Before we slip on that plain gold band we are told, among other things that ;
– Marriage is hard work.
– If you put a coin in a jar every time you have sex during your first year of marriage then take a coin out every time you have sex in subsequent years the jar will never be emptied.
– Any intelligent woman who reads the marriage contract, and then goes into it, deserves all the consequences.
– A man in love is incomplete until he is married. Then he’s finished.
On the big day things get florid. In between all the amusing anecdotes about the groom’s wild past, the schmultz is laid on as thickly as marzipan on a wedding cake. Wedding guests are regaled with lines like “today I marry my best friend, the one that I have laughed and cried with”, ” I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart)” and “stand together yet not too near together. For the pillars of the temple stand apart”*
Couples who have paid attention enter into marriage expecting to have a best friend to laugh, cry and stand together (but not too near) with. They hope that these benefits will compensate for the inevitable hard work and drop off in sex. Yet for all the jocular warnings and warm fuzziness, NO ONE tells you what marriage is really about. Mumabulous is here to tell you that marriage is about TRIVIA. When you decide to commit to another adult for the rest of your life every day thereafter is spent sweating the small stuff.
Chez ‘Abulous is a remarkably peaceful household. Dadabulous and I have quarreled only a handful of times in our 8 years together. Nevertheless we have long running disputes over some trifling issues. Our number one disagreement is about the toast. According to Dadabulous I overcook it. He frets that I am feeding the family carcinogens. My counter argument is that he undercooks the toast. His toast is like “Obama” – only half brown. The second point in my rebuttle is that he is paranoid about cancer. Inevitably this triggers a rant about the solid scientific evidence backing his position. Googled facts haven’t changed my opinion. I still prefer my toast more Denzil Washington than Barrack Obama.
My use of cleaning products is also a bone of contention. In Dadabulous’ opinion I use too much of it and am dousing Chez ‘Abulous with carcinogens. I repeat my point that he is paranoid about cancer. One squirt of Spray and Wipe and he is stomping about the house opening windows in a huff. If I dared to use The White King toilet bleach in all of our bathrooms simultaneously (we have 5), he would order a full scale evacuation. So accute is his sensitivity to chemical smells he has banned scented babywipes.
Grocery shopping is a fraught experience. Dadabulous’ approach is scientific. He will carefully scrutinise every label checking the list of ingredients. There’s a rule of thumb whereby he will only buy chocolate chip biscuits if they contain at least 25% chocolate. Anything less leads to an almighty moan about poor value for money. Fruit and vege shopping is even worse. He will check and double check each item ensuring fruity perfection. God help me if I bring home a bruised apple, overripe melon or a punnet of strawberries with a few “manky” ones at the bottom.
Talking to my Mumrades, I am assured that this is a universal experience. One friend believes her husband is suffering domestic blindness when it comes to grime. He can’t see her point or the mess. Another gal pal and her husband disagree on when to terminate well worn underwear and socks. If he had his way, he would hang on to these items until the very last molecules of fabric disintergrated.
What inane disagreements go on in your household? More importantly, did anyone tell you the truth about this stuff before you leapt into the matrimonial abyss?
* From “Today I Marry My Friend” by Bertrand Russell who had alot of knowledge on the subject having married three times.
I Carry Your Heart With Me by EE Cummings &
What of Marriage by Kahlil Gibran – my father wheeled this one out for Mum & Dadabulous’ wedding.