by Stephen Ulrich –
My wife is the most wonderful, inelligent, strong, loving, attentive, patient, beautiful, sexy, and dependable partner a man could ever ask for. Did I mention that I like her too? And that her job pays for my health insurance? It just doesn’t get any better than this.
I must admit I did work my ass off during the selection process. Being a crusty 30 year veteran of nuts and bolts sales and marketing, I treated dating and Match.com like any other sales vetting process. The process was not romantic at all. I sent out a simple statement “I like your smile” to dozens of probablle matches, and evaluated their responses for creativity and suitability. There were dozens of meetings for coffee, scores of dates, and not a minor amount of frustration.
The sample population ran from those who wanted to boss me around, those who wanted a sugardaddy, those who wanted a “friend” to those who had a monicum of possibility. A couple that were really suitable in my mind, did not share that opinion of me, but most never got to the second date stage.
When I first communicated with Mary, I thought “what a lovely, solid, professional girl.” She had a great job, was quite sharp, was well polished in her commnication and seemed to be honest and of good character. We had both been on Match for so long that we had pretty much given up the ghost, but felt it was worth “one last try.”
Our first meeting was coffee (per usual) at a Starbucks that ended up beind just below the window of ther apartment building. Coffee after dinner, turned into another quick snack, followed by a nightcap at one of my local blues bars. There had been no planning, but my flute happened to be in my car, and the band was on a break. A quick conversation with the band leader sent me scurring to my car, only to arrive back to the table with a dozen red roses (from a street vendor) and a little black box containing my axe. A couple of songs later, it was announced that “we would like to invite our friend Steve to come up and sit in on a song with us” and up I went. They performed “Sweet Home Chicago” in the key of C so it was easy for me, and I’ll have to admit I crushed the song.
Arriving back to the table my date was suitably impressed, we kissed, and the rest is history. The storybook date was followed by her announcement that her entire month of November was spoken for……hmmm. Not the follow-up that I had expected, but it never got me down and the fact that it didnt ended up working to my advantage, as the month long absence never materialized either. Aparantely there were plans with an old lover in Australia that were far more in her mind than his, but that again was MUCH to my advantage.
As the months, then years flew by I asked her to marry me. She refused. I asked again. She refused again. I am persistant, and for the sake of brevity in this writing suffice it to say that she did finally relent. The wedding was as storybook as the first date had been.
There have been ups and downs. It is told that I am not the easiest man to live with. There is a certain critical nature, and inate arrogance in my otherwise perfect Arian demeanor that some find less than attractive. That, and my propensity to consume massive amounts of spirits at even the slightest suggestion of a party, or celebration, or boredom, or frustration, or… left me asleep on the couch far to many an evening. That, by the grace of a higher power I choose to call God, has been lifted and life has gotten far better as a result.
I have mastered the three words that make a marriage work, “that’s right dear.” The work on my cynicism is, regrettably, ongoing. It is, however, generally accepted that it’s good to be me. My wife is as good as they come, my dog is the same, we live in a beautiful home with great family and friends, and our basketball team is among the greatest this planet is likely to ever see.
Then there’s the Vancouver WA weather, but as stated previously, I’m still working on the negativity. 🙂
The secret to a wonderful marriage is simple. Work your ass off to find the best woman in the world. Get lucky beyond your wildest expectations. Work your ass off to get her to marry you. Get lucky again. Work your ass off to keep your head out of said ass, and give FAR more often and far more than you percieve to be the “fair” 50% and there is hope for you yet!