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Advice to my son about…


To be specific, wives.

It has assaulted my ears. And my vision. I am speaking of TLC’s program, “90 Day Fiance“. It strikes me as a mash-up of “Big Brother” meets any show on WE TV about weddings. Without the full blown Bridezilla stuff. They have 90 days to convince the potential spouse to not put them back on the plane, and who wouldn’t want to stay in the good ol’ USA?

I watched bits and pieces of different episodes, and I was happy to see the ones I viewed as having potential to work out. It is much better than WE TV’s “Bridezillas”, which my wife watched for one season during summer break. One episode after the other. I was strong armed into watching as well. Maybe not strong armed, but I was lured in by the train wreck. What guy among us was not hoping the groom would look at his violently “IT’S MY DAY!!!” spouting bride and say: “I’ve thought about it, and I’ve decided that I can’t marry you because I am gay now. Just happened, this week. Thanks. Bye.” Never happened. But it should have.

But this 90 Day Fiance made me think. When Bailey starts dating it is a trial run. Whatever he has seen me do he will think back on it. I have been fairly even handed around here. Nothing out of the ordinary. My wife and I don’t have any serious arguments. We tend to discuss things in a rational manner. That’s not to say we have always seen eye to eye, but of those times when voices were raised we kept it civil. More civil than the U.S. Senate, and any other parliament you will find.

So what should he be looking for in a potential spouse?

I got lucky. I won’t lie. I’m amazed she stuck around for five years before I proposed. So that’s the first nugget. Time. I’m not saying to string her along, but I am saying this is not a temporary thing. We are Catholic, so it is one and done. If things are not working out both parties should analyze why. No finger pointing, no yelling, no fur flying. Analyze your damn self. Sure it’s the other person, but guess what? It’s you as well. And if you are stupid, selfish, or lecherous, that’s you! Fix it. Fix yourself. They won’t. Magic is not real. And Dr. Phil only takes outlandish crap. If you date for a period longer than a year the chances are you will find something you don’t like. Continue for another year or so and if you find things are fine, and he/she can tolerate all that is screwy with you, chances are you can get married. Time. Two selfish, constantly inebriated, going to the club people will not last past six months. If they do it is probably because they are both A-list celebrities and doing it for the camera. Real people don’t function like that.

This is for everybody. If your boyfriend/girlfriend spends more than ten minutes of any hour looking at a screen (other than during a movie) walk. They have the attention span of a virus, and their intellect is wrapped up in Scotch Tape. Whatever meaningful thing they have to say about anything can be jotted down on a Post-It Note (all kinds of 3M references). Not worth your time. If you are that person, un@#$& yourself. Get a flip phone and join the human race. You are not capable of tempering your use of technology with your societal obligations as a functioning human. Accept that.

Look for somebody grounded in reality. I am a product of the 80’s. I’m Generation-X. In high school I shaved the sides of my head, and wanted to move to Europe. I thought the Sex Pistols were prophets, and the Smiths were right behind them. My wife, on the other hand, drove a Camaro (she confessed), and was in FFA. We did not meet until our late 20’s, and that is good. Because she definitely would not consent to an earlier version of me. Today she listens to my music, and likes it. I still have not flipped the switch and heard a country song all the way to the end, unless REM recorded a country song. Doing outlandish things is fine, when you are young. As an adult it is not so much the adage “we grow old because we stop playing” as it is some things require serious consideration instead of goofing off. My wife does that for me. Keeps me focused on the important crap. I have friends that still ride BMX and Motocross, in their 40’s. They listen to the Misfits and can quote Repo Man (plate…shrimp). But they are married. Henry Rollins has his shit together, so I fall in line.

Don’t be a D-Bag. Hold doors open, compliment, and consider others. I’m going to go out on a limb and say Henry Rollins does not act like a D-Bag Frat Boy. It probably has nothing to do with his current lifestyle, and everything to do with his worldview. Nobody likes those kind of people. Nobody. Not me. Not my wife. Not the person behind the counter at a fast food restaurant. If you want to be that kind of person you will fit in with most of the celebrity culture, and you have a lot in common with the people I have to control my temper around. I read somewhere that if a boy wanted to be “counter-culture” today he should strive to become an Eagle Scout. From the inception of Scouting until today only two million people have attained the rank of Eagle Scout. That’s not a huge number considering the that every boy alive from 1912 until present day is eligible for scouting. Pricks outnumber the good guys. If you are one of the good guys, chances are the lady will choose you. Be one of the bad guys and prep yourself for a stretch of lonely, interspersed with some good times, but nothing lasting. Bad news, you will age. You are doing it now. That Han Solo crap only lasts for so long and then… Disney buys it out. You can come back for the sequels, but you are not the main character. Figure out how to act like a man, and then you will be one. That is simple.

To all of the males: Consider how you act and think now. If you do get married, or maybe you won’t. If you do have children, or maybe you won’t. Your wife, your potential daughter, there are other “men” out there. If you are acting or thinking like a rolled up turd, do you expect any different from the others? I could leave it with some comment about Karma or “Reap what you sow”, but I think my son will get it. How would you want your mother, sister, daughter, or wife treated?

Act like a man, damn it. It is counter culture as hell.



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