A friend most dear to me got married last month. While like always I wished him the best, I was a little sad for two reasons. One, that I could not be with him on his special day and the other, that I could not timely convince him against his decision to get married in the first place.
But then I have made my peace with it. I have realized that what you cannot do is, stop IT department in your office from blocking torrents and soft porn. But what you can do is, be updated on tricks of evading URL and IP filters.
So the only practical thing I can do is to share with him wisdom from my experience vide this open letter. May this help him prepare for the struggle ahead.
For thats what marriage is .. Its a struggle .. A war - A series of battles that need to be won, a field peppered with land-mines that need to be navigated without loosing a limb, a constant struggle of one up-man-ship (no pun intended). A game with you in & as Mario, where over the stages the developer intermittently keeps on taking away your powers to jump, fly and fire.
Girls prepare for it from day one. They pray for their prince charming to "be dressed in white and to come riding a horse". White representing wealth, prosperity and mild nature. Wealth that she'd splurge and calm so he wont snap back. Riding horse representing strength and chauvinism so he'd protect her and do chores for her. In no time however these chores, these acts of valor of saving her from danger and romancing her will take a dramatic u turn & become doing dishes & ironing clothes & cleaning up after babies.
As an extreme exception even if they do accept a lesser mortal, say a frog for a husband they do it with hidden malicious intent of kissing and turning him onto a "prince charming dressed in white and riding a horse". There is no risk in it for them as they'll nag him to death anyways if he doesn't become one.
We guys are different.
A man realizes the gravity of lifelong situation they he has gotten himself into only on the wedding day when he takes notice of the "carefully chosen words" in the two distinctly different sets of congratulatory messages being showered on him and his newly wedded bride.
To the bride they say; "Congratulations dear. You are looking beautiful" and to the groom; "Remember you are married now. One has to make lot of adjustments and compromises to make marriage work."
"WTF !!!"; you think. "I didn't sign up for this."
But by then its too late, there is no turning back now. The only graceful thing you can do is get on with it,
Still, you dont have to go unprepared. To give you a head start, here are some master strokes that you'll otherwise only learn with experience.
Wrong is right: More than "make" you need to be a master of "break". Let me explain. There would be times when you'll hear; "Baby, can you prepare the tea today.", "Listen ... am not feeling like cooking or eating out. Can you please make something for me honey?", "Have an early morning meeting tomorrow, can you do the dishes today ... pleeeease".
What do you do in such scenarios? You can't say no. Remember, you "vowed" to support her in all walks of life. So you go ahead and do it for that one time. But here is what you can do to ensure you don't have to do it ever again. Make Tea, but ensure she pukes at first taste, prepare elaborate meal but burn the chapatis and make gravy taste like feet, Do the dished but break the bowl her mother gifted.
Forgive but never forget: Love in marriage is overrated. Count is what matters.The key to successful marriage for a guy is to keep track of times when her lady love goofs up. So when you screw up, and screw up you will, you can throw in her face the magnanimity you showed on her last debacle. Keep a tracker and hide it beneath your dirty underwear if you may.
Hone up your stage skills: You need to master the art to pretend sleep and read signs of a pretend sleeper. The former you'll need early morning to win the game of - 'How to get her to prepare morning tea" and the later skill would come handy for you in the other end of the day [wink .. wink]
Generosity is the key: Get and do what you want. But be man enough to first make her believe its her decision.
On the bright side my dear friend, now that you are married you'll be able to relate with LOTR at a whole new level. Next time when you do a LOTR marathon and at the end of his three movie long ordeal see a bruised, tired, bleeding, dying Frodo just about to throw his precious in the molten lava, you'll instinctively look at your own wedding ring and think - - - - "That lucky bastard."
I would have loved to share more, but am getting the feeling that the ever watchful eye of Sauron is casting her gaze on me.
So I'll sign off, but you - Be Safe, you are married now !!