The Onion made a nice contribution to my interior discourse on the nature of love (click here for part I and part II) with this week’s article “I Love the Idea of My Wife.” Although the piece is comic, comedy is often one of the best sources of truth, so there are some good ideas to consider. This was my favorite bit:
“Frankly, I’d be lost without her. But I guess I’d feel that way about pretty much anybody who was from the same age group, economic tier, and level of education, and who I happened to marry 20-odd years ago, back when it was time to acquire a wife.”
I guess another title for the article would be “In Love with a Socio-Economic Construct.” I think that scenario is probably true for the majority of all marriages. I don’t think it’s anything to feel weird about; I think most people are largely interchangeable. Like LEGOs®, we’re all differently shaped pieces that fit together in particular ways. I know I could probably happily marry any number of girls I know. Of course they’d all be from similar demographic backgrounds, because we all have our own preferences – similar age group, economic tier, and education just mean that our mates will be more likely to understand us – you could keep going all the way back into species, genus, family, order, class, phylum, and kingdom  if you want. The dangerous thing the author does is compare his wife to a garden implement and a financial investment. There are plenty of people out there like that, I’m sure.
While I’ll be the first to admit that people are interchangeable, I’ll add that some of us are much more oddly shaped than others, and so will not fit together with just anyone. So therein lies the challenge: finding the best match.
1.) Yes I’m just showing off my retention of 9th grade science. Although in Arkansas some people do get more adventurous in their mating preferences…probably as far up as phylum.