Saturday, August 18, 2007

If I Knew Then What I Know Now...

I have a confession to make. Many of my friends know me as a relatively level-headed person, slightly overweight, a bit sarcastic (a fact which is certain to shock most readers of this blog!), and phenomenally good-looking. But they don't all realize that my single greatest asset is luck! That's right, I'm the luckiest person ever to put on a pair of socks (even if I do insist on wearing them with sandals now and then!).

Okay, I can hear you all asking yourselves, "Self, what does he mean, '...luckiest person ever to put on a pair of socks'?"

Then many of you are answering yourselves "Self, if you would just shut up for two seconds, he'll tell us!"

Naturally, many of you are now answering back, "Me shut up? What about you, self! You're the one who talked all the way through The Importance of Being Ernest on Friday so we had to watch it AGAIN on Saturday when you KNEW I wanted to be online playing City of Heroes instead and now I've missed the Rikti Invasion AND the Double XP weekend and I missed out on my chance to make Level 25! LEVEL 25, YOU JERK!"

Now, as one might expect, you are dragging yourself outside by the hair, intending to beat the bejeezus out of yourself for being such a dill-weed. It's okay. I understand my audience and its needs. I'll wait...

dum dum dum dum dum dum dum
dum dum dum dum DUM
de-dum de-dum de
dum dum dum dum dum dum dum
DUM de-dum dum dum
dum (boom boom)

Okay, you're back. Are you allright? Not too beat up? Good. Let's continue.

So, as I was saying, I'm the luckiest person ever to put on a pair of socks. I say this because my wife and I recently celebrated our thirteenth wedding anniversary! Woo! Lucky thirteen!

Actually, for me, the real celebration began the next morning when I woke up and she was still here and not running down the road screaming "What have I done? What have I done? For the love of God, WHAT HAVE I DONE?!?!"


Mind you, I have this particular celebration every day.

But seriously, thirteen years! And we're happy! I don't mean just your average "most of our bills are paid and neither of us is currently under a federal indictment" kind of happy, but really, truly "warm cookies fresh from the oven, playing with a three week old kitten" kind of happy!

Every day we seem to find something new to love about each other, or we re-discover something old that we already loved about each other (perhaps senility is setting in early?)! It's really kind of cool!

However, as I stated earlier, I am lucky. I am lucky because even though we've seen a lot of relationships fall apart over the years (two words, people: DEODORANT!) ours has just gotten stronger. Now, I'm no expert; most days, to be completely honest with you, I'm just wingin' it! But I have paid a little attention over the years and have made note of some of the more important lessons my wonderful marriage has taught me.

Now, let me put a few disclaimers out here first.
  • I am a guy. If you are also a guy, you will probably understand what I'm talking about in the next few paragraphs. If you are a girl, you will undoubtedly think I'm a mooring (see THIS blog entry to understand what that means)! That's okay, because I have a hot wife who loves me, so I'm not out to impress you.
  • Absolutely everything I say is right. Not everyone will be able to accept that right away, but by the time I'm done, you will probably agree.
Okay, so here it is. A compendium of some of the most important lessons I've learned in thirteen years of marriage. It may not be everything you need to know, but it'll sure as heck help!

The Sage Words Marital Knowledge Base and Bait Shop

Lesson One: Nomenclature

Holy crap! I got married! I found a woman with all the qualities I always knew were essential for the woman I married to have (bad eyes and poor judgment) and I somehow managed to get her to marry me!

Now, the first thing I learned, I learned early on. You have to establish the pet name. This is vitally important, as you will be expected to use this name for her for the rest of your natural life! Feel free to go with "Snookums" or "Snuggle-Bunny" or "Love-Muffin" if you want but remember, you will be using this name when you talk to her on the phone from the office for the rest of your life! DO NOT get tied down to "Snuggle-Bunny"! Some acceptable ones are "Honey", "Sweat-Heart" and "Darling". In the interest of full disclosure, my wife has been "Chica" since 1994 and seems to respond to it most of the time.

Lesson Two: The Battle for Middle-Earth (Ground)

Not long after we got married, Chica and I had a lot of fights. Not knock-down, drag-out, "I should smother you in your sleep" type fights, but epic battles nonetheless! Now this is normal for every couple, but you have to learn to pick and choose your battles. You and your new Snooky-Wookie are completely different people and have been brought up in completely different ways (unless you married your sister, in which case I'll just say "Enjoy the banjo music!" and ask you to find another blog to read!).

Now, it stands to reason that she's going to be wrong about a lot of things! But be careful where you draw the line in the sand and whatever you do, don't keep score! And if you do keep score, keep it to yourself! Don't go blabbing it all over the Internet for just anyone to see! That would be STUPID! For example, don't do this:

Question: How do glasses get put away in the cupboard?
Answer: Upside-down, so dust doesn't get inside
Winner: Sage Words (Chica actually didn't care, but I'm taking the win anyway!)

Q: Where does dirty laundry go?
A: NOT on the floor!
W: Chica

Q: Who gets the good car and who gets the beater?
A: Her and you, in that order!
W: Chica

Q: If I bring in the mail, do I
have to open it?
A: You do, she does not

W: Chica

Q: Does the toilet paper roll go over or under?

A: Still under review as of this writing
W: Tie (But I will fight until the last star in the last galaxy fades to black on this one! Viva Encima del Rodillo!)

Score: Chica 3 - Sage Words 1 (For now!)

Now understand that you, as a guy, are destined to lose most of these arguments. It's as natural as birds flying south or monkeys flinging poo. It's simply going to happen and you can NOT stop it. The trick is to pick one, and ONLY one subject, and stick to your guns! You can readily cave on all the others, but do not give in on that one no matter what! Can you guess which one I haven't given up on?

Lesson Three: Bedroom Stuff (No, not THAT stuff, pervert!)

Figure out which side of the bed is is yours, and which is hers, but do not assume that you can simply get in on your side every night! Sometimes, she will just want to sleep on your side for a few nights and there's nothing you can do about it! Oh yeah, and she doesn't have a reason, she doesn't need a reason! And you are an insensitive ass for asking! STOP PERSECUTING HER!


Set up your night-stand exactly the way you like it. Place your wallet, watch, spare change, keys, and anything else you have in precisely the right spots. Now accept the fact that your wife will know better and just move your stuff around sometimes! And she doesn't need a reason! It will just NEED TO BE DONE! But don't worry, when you're running late for work and can't find your wallet or your keys, just look in your sock drawer. This is apparently a logical place for those things.


Be sure she has ample room for all her night things (she will have a LOT!) and don't EVER move her stuff! If you move so much as a hair pin or her eye drops, you will regret it! Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but soon; and for the rest of your life! Trust me on this, just leave it alone!


Closets. Oh boy. There are two things you need to know about closets:
  1. Half of the closet space is yours. It's a rule.
  2. Your half of the closet space is defined as: 6 shirts, 1 tie, 3 pairs of pants and a shoe.

Alarm clocks are YOUR responsibility! If you don't believe me, just go to bed without checking the alarm clock on a night where she has to get up early but you don't. In fact, let's make it interesting. Remind her to set the clock the night before! Now here's the good part: if she does set the clock, and makes it up on time, GREAT! But if not; if she forgets, or the power goes out, or the cat eats the clock, and she gets up late; IT IS YOUR FAULT!

Dude, just set the clock.

Lesson Four: Oh, the Twah-let!


If you have to sell a kidney (or several, depending on how liberal your neighborhood is) to get the money for a second bathroom, DO IT! If you have to go without a car, without a television, without a living room or even without pants, just make sure you have that second bathroom!

I can not stress this enough! You MUST have your own bathroom! If you share one, she'll DO THINGS in your bathroom that you DON'T want to know about! All those things the girls talked about in Fifth Grade Health Class when all us boys got an extra recess REALLY HAPPEN! You don't want to have to deal with it! And she'll keep know...woman stuff in there! A lot! All the time!

Plus, she'll move your stuff. That's right, just like the night-stand, she will, without provocation, MOVE YOUR STUFF!

Are you right-handed? She'll move your hair brush to the left! Are you sure that's your toothpaste you're grabbing, or is it your Q-tips? Where is your styptic pencil? WHERE IS YOUR STYPTIC PENCIL?????!!!!!

Okay. Deeeep breath...get ahold of yourself, Sage old buddy, old's alright.

Whew! That's better.

Anyhow, get your own bathroom. Trust me!

The Big Wrap-Up:

It's not easy being brilliant. I didn't ask for it, but it's a burden I'm willing to shoulder for the betterment of mankind (specifically, married-mankind). Please look these lessons over. Learn from them. Take them to heart. Gain nourishment from the fruits of my labor!

Oh yeah. I almost forgot the most important lesson. Be good to your Chica, whoever she is! That's the REAL secret! If you're good to her, she will be good to you, and the two of you will be happy, and all the rest of this stuff will be just so much meaningless eyewash!

Except the bathroom thing. I am SO not kidding on that one!

-Sage Words