Sunday, January 10, 2010
The true nature of human development and marriage
Truth be told most I have fairly recently come to realize that men are not only ignorant of the true nature of the demands of marriage but simply do not have the capacity to understand the details even when they are explained on a kindergarten level. Which begs the question how did men get this way?
Well in my opinion it probably started while our ancestors still lived in trees. In actuality I think it was the women evolving the bigger brains and they simply got tired of the persistently lazy guys swinging around enjoying the first true sport of throwing handfuls of poop at each other, like Howler monkeys do even now, and getting a buzz from eating overripe fruit. At some point the ladies rebelled and pushed us out of the trees demanding that we stop throwing poop and help with the babies. Men being as stupid as they are didn’t have the sense to climb back up in the tree at night and instead went off romping through the jungle. Given such clueless behavior, the first predator we chanced upon unimpressed with our poop throwing tactics would have quickly made us a light snack. Thankfully, the females climbed down looking for us and forced us into caves. That I believe was due less for their concern for the stupid, roving males and more for their love of living space with far more square-footage.
Now living in caves only postponed any solution to the original problem. Instead of being lazy and shiftless in trees, our primitive ancestors were being lazy and shiftless on the ground. But at least we guys were not throwing poop anymore, which the ladies saw as a small improvement, and by the time fire and spears were invented the females could just send us off to hunt.
Of course advancement eventually had our species move into houses but while you may be able to take the monkey out of the trees he is still a lazy bum. Because instead of sending us guys out to hunt we now bought our food from grocery stores allowing us to stay home and watch our new favorite sports of football, baseball, ladies beach volleyball, and bass fishing tournaments while drinking beer all day. Given the lack of poop splatter and smell to contend with you would think the females would be happy but the ease and convenience of our new civilized behavior exacerbated our old issues. After centuries of dealing with the shiftless hordes the ladies had finally had enough and decided that action must be taken. Luckily, for us guys at least a small number of them felt that we had a few useful talents and along with the basic need for reproduction to continue the species decided to try to teach us some basic skills.
The most convenient avenue to accomplish such a task was of course to lull us less advanced members of the species into a false sense of bliss and security and once the marriage ceremony was over bring the hammer down at some point and force us knuckle dragging brutes into some sort of civilized behavior. That in the nutshell is it folks, marriage is less a commitment of love between two people but more a continuation of a million year old battle to get us guys to help around the tree, cave, or house.
Like most marriages the opening skirmishes for me started out all warm and fuzzy with my wife and me calling each other by cute nicknames, holding hands all the time, and seeing each others faults as cute endearing traits. Our first year together we lived in a small one bedroom apartment whose total living space in square footage was not much above a large walk-in closet found in many of the upper scale McMansions these days. But as a newlywed couple the close confines were thought of as “cozy” offer both certain challenges and advantages.
Meals were a tag team event with one person preparing one portion of the coming meal then handing off to the other for something else to be done. Being newly married our joint meal preparations were all most entirely dishing out the take-home Chinese or the pizza that we had delivered. Cleaning was not much of an issue since like all walk-in closets a quick couple of passes with a vacuum and the carpet was clean. The bathroom and kitchen could be tackled separately very quickly, especially since they were almost too small for more than one person to occupy at one time.
As far as the advantages to a small apartment, a young couple can find more than a few interesting and frankly unusual places for clothing optional “exercises.” Although, just from my own personal experience those types of exercises performed on the attached small patio, even very late at night, tend to have negative effects on the neighbors no matter how much fun you all may be having.
But like all good things the false sense of bliss and security soon ended when we moved into our first house and my wife brought the hammer down and began training me in earnest, with admittedly mixed results.
Those short-term issues like home improvements and lawn care didn’t take too much time. While the reasons for changing out things like light fixtures, wallpaper, and paintings may escape me I have long since learned to go with the flow. My training has even developed to the point that when I’m asked for my opinion on the replacements I know the subtle and unconscious gestures my wife uses to signify which ones she prefers. My ancient ancestors may have been poop-throwing monkeys but only a single cell amoeba would actually be dumb enough to voice his honest opinion on such abstract questions.
The long-term stuff involved learning to cook something other than microwaveable pizzas for dinner, lessons in the evils of dust and soap scum, and why dirty clothes belong in the laundry hamper and not piled in a corner of the bedroom. Over time I actually learned to cook some decent meals that while are not gourmet in any sense are at least a little more complex than hamburger helper. Repeated lessons have actually taught me the benefits of dusting although I still haven’t figured out why soap scum is so hated by women. Now if there is one thing I have mastered its laundry, I can have all the clothes divided into proper categories, washed, and folded long before my wife has any idea the chore needed to be done.
While there has been some successes in my wife’s attempt to civilize me there have been some failures. The cap on the toothpaste thing is still troublesome and a cause for discord. I have no idea why this should be an issue, it’s not like the toothpaste will run out of an open tube.
Putting a new roll of toilet paper on the holder when the only thing left is the cardboard cylinder is a rather important thing for my wife. This failure I blame on my upbringing. We poor country folk just set the new roll of toilet paper on the toilet lid resting atop a small pile of magazines available for anyone to read while they go about their natural business. Remarkably, even that habit is something my wife has tried to break me of since we were married.
However, if there is one thing that drives my wife crazy is my unbreakable habit of leaving the toilet seat up. After years of training trying to get me to raise the seat for my business and then to lower it once I’m done even now there are times when my primitive brain fails me.
Just this last Christmas Eve when not a creature was stirring and my wife and I had finished settling our yearly account with Santa we made our way to bed. I had worked the night before and had not slept any during Christmas Eve day keeping the kids busy. My wife had spent the day preparing for Christmas dinner and dealing with the added complications brought on by her folks calling up and saying they were coming to our house after all instead of driving up to Richmond to be with their other daughter.
While I dozed off rather quickly I still heard her get up and in the darkness amble to the bathroom. Seconds later, once I heard the subdued splash of her falling the extra couple of inches in the porcelain bowl. Instantly I was wide-awake realizing that I had left the seat up again. The muffled grumbles that I heard before she came back out was nothing compared to the lecture I got as she crawled back into bed.
I had no excuse; all I could do was agree to my horrendous actions and my total lack of common decency. After a few minutes I turned over and let her anger slowly fade as we both drifted off to sleep. Before I was completely lost to sleep I did hear one more thing that got me to wondering about the whole nature of men, women and marriage in general.
“It would be far easier to teach a monkey to put the seat down after he’s done.” She said fading off to sleep.
Millions of years of human advancement and it always boils back down to the sins of our monkey ancestors who first jump down from the trees. Sort of make me wonder why we ever gave up poop throwing.