Sunday, May 03, 2009

What I have learned about women in twenty years of marriage.

Very, very little. In fact, I can honestly say that the intricacies of the female mind are as much a mystery to me today as they were on that June afternoon some twenty years ago. It is not that I have failed to learn anything about how women think; rather it is how the principles and rules of the female mind are not hard and fast. I would suggest that being a husband is like taking one of those multiple-choice tests where you are supposed to pick the “most correct” answer. You may pick a solution that seems right, but it is not the “right” right answer your wife was looking for.

Consider a certain problem that you may encounter with your wife; the correct answer you chose the last time may not be the right one on this occasion. I can almost hear a hushed “amen” from the husbands out there. However, if you are a wife reading this, you will say, the husband obviously is not learning anything and making the same mistake again.

So, short of any Jedi mind tricks, is there a way to deal with these constantly changing rules? I can think of three, each has its upside and downsides.

The first is to feign some sort of benign ignorance. “Oh, I’m sorry honey, when you said not to buy any more guns, I thought for sure you meant shotguns, and as you can see, this is a rifle.” This strategy has its downside when you actually do have a great idea, and your wife will not consider it because she thinks you may have a mild form of developmental disability.

The second is to ditch the married life altogether and become a professional bachelor. You can get up at noon on Saturdays, you can leave the toilet seat up, have beer for breakfast, and you can make nachos using spicy pork rinds and Velveeta without anyone saying a word. The downside is being alone for years could turn you into the Unabomber. I wonder if they found any spicy pork rinds or Velveeta in that Montana cabin.

The third is to stop trying to figure out how they work, and start listening to them. I mean stop what you are doing, and really listen to your wife. I will admit that I have not tried this particular tactic very often, and I am unsure how useful it could be, but it’s worth a try. The downside? You must discontinue the use of the first tactic, feigned ignorance, which is too bad because it can be very effective.

I hope to see you at the Friends of the NRA Dinner at the Elk’s Hall on Thursday. I wonder if my wife would be upset if a win a new gun in a raffle. I may have to turn over that new leaf of listening on Friday. Monday for sure.

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