“All right, Mr. Know-It-All…” She removes her seat belt and repositions her body, tucking her legs underneath her and resting her elbows on the center console. She cups her chin in the palm of her hand and focuses on me with curious eyes, ready and willing to give me her undivided attention. “Please, tell me your recipe for marital satisfaction. I must hear it.”
“You really want to know?”
She nods several times. “Very much.”
“All right then.” I clear my throat, feeling oddly like one of my old high school teachers preparing for a lecture. “First, you need to find someone with whom you have chemistry. Someone you can tolerate enough to survive living together for the rest of your life, while always maintaining a mutual respect for one another.” I hold my right index finger in the air. “Respect. Very important. If you don’t respect each other, it’ll never work.”
“Respect,” she repeats. “Got it.”
“Also, in order for your marriage to succeed, you must fulfill a few initial requirements, such as ensuring that you share at least a couple of common interests and goals. Next…”
My eyes slide off of the road for a moment and connect with hers. She smiles encouragingly, and I keep going.
“Assume that your spouse will probably drive you nuts at least half the time, if not most, but just love him to death regardless. And last but not least, you must accept all of his idiosyncrasies, issues, bizarre hobbies, strange habits, faults, emotional baggage, and harmless mistakes as if they’re your own. And that’s it.”
“Wow,” she says.
“Yup. I’m telling you, if people followed those rules, they’d be good to go.”
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