Sunday, July 22, 2007

Ten Marriage Codes of Conduct

I feel that marriage is an antiquated institution that has lost all meaning to our society. Being married used to be the first step after maturing as an adult and the step next to death. But in my opinion it has become a bus stop to frequent travelers. The pomp and circumstance of being a Bride has overtaken the true essence of becoming a wife. JUST as being a Groom has overtaken the true essence of being a husband. And in my opinion there should be a handbook, short course, test and lab before being issued a marriage certificate. This thought process may come as comedy to some and scathing cynicism to others but I don’t care.

If you look at the wedding announcements in any U.S newspaper you will see lots of photos of the smiling faces of Brides, amidst the gentle grimaces of the Grooms. This highly pretentious announcement should come with a score in the upper right hand corner of their photo. This score should dictate their direct understanding and passing of the Marriage Codes of Conduct. If it is a low score the guest should give only congratulatory cards with five dollar gift certificates. If it is a high score the guest should give to their hearts delight. If you are laughing, laugh at this…how many weddings have you attended where the marriage didn’t last as long as the flavor in a piece of Peppermint Gum? Seriously.

Having personally survived a divorce I went on a quest to understand what it took to make a marriage last. While transporting and interacting with literally hundreds of elderly couples I asked numerous questions. I wanted to see where I went wrong.Yes, I was wrong...some of the time.Some of their responses were prophetic and some of them were pathetic but the truth remained they were in relationships of longevity. The elder couples had almost an identical core of ethics that keep them together. I prefer to call them the Marriage Codes of Conduct. Ten of them are listed below:

10. Don’t mess with the money. I was told that addicts of any kind will obliterate a marriage.

9. There is no such thing as, “Yours and Mine” there is only, “Ours.” One elderly woman said she was going to flatten her husband’s tires after his long night out with the boys, only to realize SHE would have to pay for them.

8. Think like a couple. I was told that newly married people mistakenly think in the plural instead of the singular.

7. You cannot blame 100 percent of a marriage’s mistakes on 50 percent of the relationship.

6. Single friends give bad advice. They are single for a reason.

5. Divorced friends give even worse advice. They are divorced for a reason.

4. Ex-wives, ex-husbands, ex-girlfriends, ex-boyfriends, should under no circumstance provide: a soft shoulder, a listening ear, a word of wisdom, a place to visit or a nod of approval. They are an EX for a reason.

3. Marriages make children, children do not make marriages.

2. Love is one of the jewels of the relationship, not the ring. This surprised the complete hell out of me when a wife of 40 years said, “There were years I didn’t love my husband.”

1. Trust is essential, respect is essential but responsibility is of utmost importance.

In a lot of my conversations I found out that the older couples wanted their marriage to last. I found out that most of the couples felt if your potential spouse was horrible before the wedding they will be horrible afterwards, with a legally binding agreement. In my efforts I found out that the key to an extended marriage is the direct result of knowing WHO you are going to marry an accepting him or her and NOT hoping that through marriage they will change.


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Carefree Diet

Today marks one full month since I began my vegetarian lifestyle. I refuse to call eating only nuts, fruits and vegetables a, “diet” per se, so the term, “lifestyle” will have to do. There are several things that I have learned during this month. For one avoiding meat also means items that are associated with meat(meat flavored vegetables included). Take for instance it is unnecessary to use honey mustard dipping sauce or Ranch if you are not eating chicken strips, Heinz 57 Steak Sauce does not taste good on rice and mayo takes on a porno-esque quality if you are not eating a ham sandwich. So by avoiding those meats I inadvertently eliminated a tremendous amount of sugar and fat. The word of importance is inadvertently.

During this month I have also realized that when one has a moment of meat weakness. One pays for it in the form of a bellyache and scalding flatulence that would kill a blind goat. That said flatulence will also wake you from your nightly slumber. I have realized that eating fruits and vegetables chock full of fiber my colon stays clean…believe me there is no way to stop the cleansing process. When it is time to go you are almost too late.

But seriously, I have lost close to 18 pounds and the strange thing is that the cellulites that used to surround my man legs have disappeared. I feel lighter because I have purged the dense animal muscle and fat from my colon. I have noticed my face isn’t as oily as it once was and that I don’t get hungry as fast. I have noticed that my clothes are getting bigger and my belly smaller. I continue to read everything looking for those dreaded words, “Animal Protein” or “Animal Fat” and I have more energy to exercise. As of tomorrow I am headed into my second month and will keep you posted of my success.


Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Using Saltwater for Fuel

It isn't very often there is a news clip about something useful however I have found one today. Inventors like this is why I feel there should be a 1 billion dollar prize for the next "Green", totally renewable fuel source. Enjoy!


Sunday, July 08, 2007

Grandma Gone Wild

If by looking at the photos below you suddenly thought of the Crypt Keeper from HBO's Tales from the Crypt, you were definitely not alone. I would say implants at 90 are not sexy. I would say implants at 90 are Anti-Viagrial at best and take up precious space for CPR. This woman is walking birth control. The words for this Grandmother should be, "NO GRANDMA, DON'T!"These photos are from the Portuguese Blog( which is in Portuguese by the way) , and I am sure they would appreciate if you visit their site.


Saturday, July 07, 2007

Awesome Rock Band-Wolfmother

As a lead guitarist I enjoy playing as well as listening to Rock and Roll. Recently I stumbled across this awesome rock band called Wolfmother and let me tell you Wolfmother REALLY DOES ROCK. Personally I enjoy such artist as: Jimmie Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, CCR, Allman Brothers, Santana, Pink Floyd, The Rolling Stones, The Black Crowes, Lenny Kravitz, The Eagles, Body Count, Rob Zombie, Rage Against the Machine, Audioslave, KISS and Marilyn Manson. However when I am not listening to my personal collection of music, I frequently scour the Internet and music channels for new artist. I consider myself sort of a Rock aficionado. By listening to the first couple of guitar riffs and bars of a song, I can just about tell you if the group that playing is worth your time. But every now and then I run across a group or song that has promise. And gentle reader let me tell you for this brief moment in time it is Wolfmother. Enjoy.


Thursday, July 05, 2007

Domestic Violence Shelters for Men

While serving in communities across Alabama for over 20 years I have responded to numerous domestic violence calls. For each call I have answered I become more and more appalled at the level of control (mental and monetary) the abuser has over their victim. However, in my opinion, the domestic violence law of Alabama, in is too broad and needs revision. The law allows for the smallest of visible physical evidence to be used solely as a catalyst for arrest. This is not fair to the husband who has grabbed his spouse, to prevent her from stabbing him to death, thus leaving physical marks, resulting in him being arrested. I have seen it and the police officers, who have a tough job anyway, generally dismiss his claim based on a lack of evidence i.e. penetrating stab wounds to the husband’s person or his cold corpus delicti. This might come as a shock to my female readers everywhere but believe it or not the man is not always the abuser.

Personal compliance with Alabama’s Domestic Violence Law is mandatory as it should be However if you are found actively violating the law when the police arrive you can find yourself arguing with the business end of a police officers black can of mace or his Taser. But having treated patients second to domestic violence I realize that not all patients are female and not all females go to jail when they are the abusers. But to espouse upon my revelation in the previous sentence would take a 6 part miniseries. That is something I wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole. However when the man is at the receiving end of spousal abuse where does he go?

When men have reached the end of their marriages or are forced out of their marriages they are thought of as being tough enough to handle it. Emotions are something true guys don’t have a great command over. The key word is true. Believe me surprise divorce papers have killed plenty of husbands, with depression, alcohol and drug abuse killing more than that, and cheeseburgers ,meat lovers pizza’s and 20 year old girlfriends taking out the rest. But who do the steel workers, meat eaters, hunters, soldiers, fathers, husbands and protectors turn too when they need some time reassess their position besides jail? I am one of those men who have thought of that previous question and frankly I am appalled that the society who all too often emasculates men for being men has no way to save the dying breed of real men.

I have an idea. I personally vote for that creepy looking mansion, surrounded by Texas thorn bushes, nestled deep in the bowels of a dark forest. This place would be well equipped with man stuff like a shooting gallery, smoking rooms, furniture made out rough logs, a well stocked free bar, bathrooms with urinals and toilet seats that are welded down and oh yes I almost forgot a brass stripper pole right in the middle of the building. (Hey it’s my idea I can put what I want in it.) Therapy sessions would consist of tackle football, impromptu boxing matches and road trips to Vegas. And when it all said and done the man can go back to living his life happily knowing there are better things than a bad relationship.