Last week I threw out a little underhanded statement about marriage to see if it might spike some controversy or debate. No one mentioned it so far, which I take to mean one of the following – my mom hasn’t read it, no one read it they just liked it on FB,1 or I’m right and everyone agrees with me. I’ll lean toward the latter, especially since this week I am going to break it down and prove conclusively that marriage really doesn’t matter.
So what does matter? Well, as the word implies, something that is material – not in the sense of being tangible, like a piece of paper, but in the sense of having real impact in the world. So let’s determine if anything regarding marriage matters, by building a handy before and after checklist for some real and not so real life situations between me and my one and only:
Now, this describes my situation, which I would call ideal. In certain times in history and in certain cultures today, the legal act of marriage could have an impact on some of the real items above. This is what I term “the failure of culture”. This is when adhering to a culture (or, read another way, your cult) restricts you from basic freedoms that every human being possesses – like opting out of Christmas, or choosing to live with your partner before a piece of paper says you are “married”.
Speaking of paper, some may take me to task for saying the legal aspect of marriage isn’t real, that it’s more than just paper – it entails other obligations. Well, it may, but only by your choice to comply with them. I’ll stick to simply honoring my vows, which were also in place before my official marriage. In reality, a marriage certificate is as real as a law or a dollar bill – or, to put it bluntly, not real at all. Anything subject to change by the whims of society is not real – remember Prohibition? Around same time the dollar menu at a theoretical fast food enterprise would get you 20 happy meals. Real forces on the other hand, like Love, or the mutual enjoyment of passing gas, continue to burn bright through eternity.
Marriage, in the culturally unrestrained and pure sense, impacts only things that are machinations of society, as opposed to real situations of lasting significance. By definition, it doesn’t matter.
Am I wrong? Have additions you’d like to add to my grid, of a humorous or serious bent? Leave a comment below and let’s build out this topic together. Productive week ahead!
1 Because marriages and birthdays are the only things people Like on Facebook
2 Bowel Movement
3 This is the ideal and the current plan, but is subject to change as the facts change, as Keynes might say
Tags: Marriage, Weddings, Failure of Culture, Love
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