Friday, January 07, 2005

Tis the season

The holiday season is over and the personal training season has begun. In addition to the regular New Year's resolution crowd, the gym is now full of brides-to-be with personal trainers in tow. They are determined to look their best on their magical wedding day - even if it kills them in the meantime. The commercials are playing all the time now that start with, "You've been dreaming of this moment since you were a little it's here."

The early morning crowd at my gym is pretty much unchanged - even at New Year's. Most of the newcomers come at night. And the new brides-to-be have been quite a topic of discussion lately among the older women. I overheard (OK, eavesdropped) one lively discussion about prenuptial agreements, with the conclusion that they were pretty harmless any way because any lawyer worth his or her salt could get it changed or thrown out.

And then it hit me. What we really need in marriage is not an agreement about how we'd divide money if we get divorced, we need to create a new kind of prenuptial agreement - an agreement about what will happen once you get married. Both parties would write down the things that meant the absolute most to them - or drive them the craziest - and that would be part of the marriage contract. I promise to love, honor, cherish and stick to all the stipulations of the prenuptial agreement.

Under this new rule, my prenuptial agreement would have been written as follows (for a start anyways):

1. I promise to take my wife to the movie of her choice at least once a month.
2. I promise not to leave the TV on if I'm not even watching it.
3. I promise, if we have children, to divide nighttime duties evenly, especially if we have a fussy, collicky baby who does not sleep through the night until he's three years old.
4. I promise not to complain if my wife wants to spend every Friday evening at the bookstore.
5. I promise not to make derogatory comments about the sheer number of shoes my wife has - and I especially promise not to call her Imelda when she comes home with yet another new pair.
6. I promise to tell my wife she is beautiful and I love her every day.
7. I promise to make my wife laugh as much as possible.
8. I promise to keep a positive outlook on life.
9. I promise to find my wife a great maid after our family income level raises above $75,000 a year - and help clean the house myself until then.
10. I promise to talk to all mechanics, repair men and contractors on behalf of our family.
11. If something breaks, I will fix it or get it fixed.
12. I will not make fun of my wife if she calls to tell me that she is lost and almost out of gas.
13. I will not complain about the excessive number of magazine subscriptions my wife seems to think she needs.
14. I will remember and buy her (lovely, thoughtful) presents for these dates: Valentine's Day, birthday, anniversary, Christmas. And I will never buy her a gas cap or a vacuum cleaner for any of these important dates.

So what would yours include?


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