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The Friday Top Five: The Five Things I Have Learned Being Married

Posted Jul 13 2012 9:43am
Those of you with living with a domestic partner understand how difficult it is to negotiate space, time, and responsibilities. Relationships constantly evolve as we evolve as people. I mean, are you the same person now that you were ten years ago, let alone, five years ago? I shudder to ask. Over the course of my eleven years of utterly blissful marriage to my wonderful wife—who I am lucky to have (I know this because I am reminded of it daily by my wife and my family)—I have learned some things about myself and my skill set that have come to light thanks to my wonderful wifey. Here are the top five
5) DOMESTIC DUTIES: According to my wife, before I met her, I as unable to actually cook and clean and perform simple domestic chores. I found this revelation especially worrisome because I don't know how I survived six years of living on my own as an undergraduate and during graduate school before meeting my wife. Apparently, I suck at performing the simplest of tasks: folding laundry, making the bed, and doing the laundry, because I am no longer able to do these things. I know what you're thinking... I purposely sabotage the making of the bed and folding of laundry so that I do not have to do it. Negative. After putting together a couple of piles of clothes, wifey will inevitably sigh, grab about half of them and refold them. I love cooking, and my wife does not mind when I cook. However, upon finishing dinner, it apparently looks like "a hurricane went through the kitchen." If I clean immediately after dinner, I am allowed to cook for the family again without permission. However, if I wait too long to clean up after myself, I lose my cooking privilege for an undetermined amount of time.

And while I am on domestic chores, what the hell is the sense of making the bed? Yes, I realize it looks nice, but when I was in college, I think I actually made my bed twice during a semester, and that was only because I washed my sheets. Again, I am not sure I actually made the bed, but rather, made it so I could sleep in it comfortably.

4) I AM NOT AS FUNNY AS I THINK I AM: Marriage has taught me that although I think I am one of the most hysterical and good-humored persons on the planet, that I am in fact about as funny as the film "Leaving Las Vegas." When I took my new job and went into school the first day to teach, my wife looked at me and said, "Mark, don't try to be funny, you are not that funny." I think she was only half-serious. What I have learned about teaching is that I have stopped being cool and funny in the way that my students think of "cool" and "funny."

3) I AM A TERRIBLE DRIVER: Although I've never been in any accident (that was my fault), I may in fact be the worse driver in North America. I know this because my wife is actually responsible for giving me directions like a Nascar pit crew while I am driving with her anywhere. "You're going to fast," "Don't get so close to that car." What I like most of all are the comments and rhetorical questions she asks as I am driving
"What do you think, you're driving a Ferrari?"

or

"Yiiiikes!  *under breath* Not safe... not safe."

2) I DO NOT NEED TO EAT A FEAST FOR DINNER EVERY NIGHT: Huh, who knew? You mean, I don't need to eat a meal every evening like it is my last meal on Earth? Yeah, unfortunately, this is one of the things left over from my impressionable Italian upbringing that is the most difficult to break from. Dinner time growing up was a festival of food. It did not matter if it was Sunday or a holiday, my mother always made a large dinner for the family which invariably consisted of enough pasta to feed an entire army barracks, or just my brothers and me. Wifey has taught me that not only could we just eat cous cous salad for dinner sans meat, but we can also have breakfast for dinner on occasion. Honestly, who does enjoy waffles and bacon any time of the day?

1) I NEED TO PRACTICE MY MIND READING: This is one of the most important skills that any person in a relationship should hone if in fact they want a long, happy relationship. Your mind-reading skills and powers of perception are two of the most crucial skills that you can hope to improve upon throughout your relationship. I have been trained to notice something as simple as a haircut. I should state that not only do I notice the haircut, but if I do not notice the haircut or new outfit within the first five minutes of speaking to the wifey, I obviously am completely self-absorbed and therefor do not care about her feelings. It is also important to work on your mind-reading so that you can know what your partner is thinking without them actually speaking the words. This is particularly difficult if you do not possess the abilities of an extra-sensory empath like Deanna Troi. I would suggest keeping a detailed journal of your partner's body language as a quick reference guide as how to respond to potentially life-threatening situations.

More soon. Train Smart!




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