Marriage is for Real Men!

They say that the institution of marriage is crumbling. They say that its an antiquated notion no longer relevant today. They say that it's a silly idea meant only to satisfy a legal prerequisite. That's very much like telling Genghis Khan that war is over rated. Try telling Republicans that the Democrats don't want to argue anymore. What's a soldier to do without a battle, without a war to wage?

They say that one should keep friends close and the enemy even closer. You can't get any closer than sleeping with the enemy. Sleeping with the enemy takes cunning. It builds character. It requires sacrifice and teaches us the intricacies of deception and strategy. Anyone can have sex with a friend, but it takes courage to sleep with your wife. Man has been engaged in this battle since Adam discovered fig leafs in unusual places and now that I've gotten things figured out, everybody wants to quit in favor of friends with benefits.

What am I going to do when there's no one to disagree with? No one around to point out my deficiencies or to tell me when I'm wrong? Who's going to tell me when I need new underwear or contrary to repeated efforts, that my mismatched socks do not constitute a fashion statement.

Marriage has taught me that home is not a sanctuary. Its boot camp. Its endless gauntlets, snares and mine fields laid meticulously beneath black lace, disguised in perfumed smiles and concealed, treacherously in satin sheets.

It is the granddaddy of all boot camps and the men who huddle fearlessly in its trenches are the most courageous men on the planet. They are elite warriors, real men, unafraid of the perils which lie obscured in intimate promises.

Marriage has taught me that PMS doesn't come once a month. It has led me to discoveries that are reserved only for those who say "I do". I now know that burnt food is nutritious. I know where the Hallmark channel is. I know how to separate the whites from the colors and that you scrape food off the plate before putting them in the dishwasher. Marriage has taught me that the best time to talk about absolutely nothing is during the last two minutes of a football game. Marriage has taught me that when she says "we need to talk" the world and everything in it, stops until we do.

Marriage has taught me that things like, golf, fishing and television endanger meaningful relationships. It has taught me that you can spend an entire day at Macy's, Nordstrom, Bed, Bath and Beyond and accomplish absolutely nothing. Marriage has taught me that you can't rinse off the Pampers and put them back on baby. Its taught me that duct tape is not a suitable pacifier. Its taught me that tying baby to my leg and taking a nap does not constitute babysitting.

Marriage has taught me that a man's home is not his castle, it's a fashion statement. Couches are not for naps. They are little orphanages, set aside for all the homeless and frilly little pillows of the world. As a matter of fact, homes do not any have rooms for napping because every room has been prepared just in case the queen of England decides to drop over for a visit.

Marriage has taught me that electricity is a detriment to candlelight. That taking a shower "does not" simultaneously clean the tub. Marriage has taught me that menopause is not a pause. Walking around the house with the hair dryer blowing does not constitute dusting and spraying the windows with Windex doesn't clean them, you actually have to wipe the stuff off. Marriage has taught me that a new toaster doesn't say happy anniversary, that foreplay isn't whispering "Come to daddy" and that romance isn't conveyed by slapping her fanny.

Yep, co-habitation is for sissies and weenies! Its for the guy whose only lasting relationship is with a BMW or a gym membership.

Real men get married. They can take a "No" and show up again tomorrow ready to engage the enemy! Husbands aren't afraid to advance in the face of opposition. They don't retreat." We have met the enemy and they are ours." What kind of a guy wants complete surrender without the requisite battle? A weenie, that's who! Real men need to battle, to move the immovable, to experience daily conquest. Real men are proud of the wounds, the battle scars and the injuries which evidence their years of rugged engagement.

What would lawyers do without our marriages. How would they pillage, plunder and reap the spoils of our war? What about marriage counselors? They would be left to go home and work on their own relationships! Politicians depend on marriage in order to keep track of all the (affairs) confronting them.

Marriage is essential to our well being. Without it, we wouldn't know that insanity doesn't kill you. We wouldn't know that dysfunction is necessary to the success of all relationships. Marriage is the open window, through which we view reality. Without it, we would think we were happy all the time. Marriage is monumental to our moral; Who else would crawl into bed with us after forty years? It is paramount to our sense of self worth; What else but marriage, could keep you in a room where air freshener isn't enough to disguise that it was either you or the dog and you have never owned a dog?

Yes, marriage is a perpetual battle. It arms us with enough stubbornness to weather the endless rains of absurdity and it orchestrates the daily chaos into a music which begs us dance.

We will never know if the ecstasy is from the fighting or from the making up. It is all that's good in bad and all that's bad in good blended into one intoxicating cocktail that leaves us so drunk with love that whatever is wrong with marriage will never matter. With all its inevitable conflict, its inherent and inescapable peril, the reward of every impending resolution will exceed the promised danger. For the cause of this perpetual battle, for this exhaustive engagement, for this gauntlet to authentic manhood, do real men marry.

Today, I will launch yet, another assault on the battlefield that separates the men who marry from those that won't. It is a battle which will attack my sense of masculinity and further attest to a character which is worthy of the great battle. Today I will spend the day with my wife at "Fabrics R Us". I will gaze upon aisles of fabric, femininity and fiasco. I will endure the endless perusal of gingham, chiffon and satins. I will bob my head up and down in dazed agreement and I will smile as though I were sitting on the fifty yard line at an Army - Navy game.

Sissy's and weenies lack the fortitude to confront such challenges. They are all stuck down at the gym oiling their six pack and passing out cards with a BMW plastered all over the face. Real men are down here at "Fabrics r Us" laying the groundwork for tonight's assault.

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Comments 48 comments

Tim 6 years ago've captured the very essensence of the blessed institution........marrrraaagggeeee!!!!as the minister says in the movie Princess Bride.....It takes real men to stay married go the course, to run the race.......only sissy's die in their lounge chairs in their pathetic studio apartments with the remote control clutched in there hand....Real men die completing the tasks on their wife's Hony Do's list. Amen I say.... Brother Alan...amen!

Lisa M Smith profile image

Lisa M Smith 6 years ago from Coupeville, WA

Totally awesome! I love it!

Emme Hickmond 6 years ago

Dad no one has the courage to say most of the things you embrace and you have the most amazing way of making some of life's difficult times funny and encouraging! thank you for this weeks marriage counseling as well as the laughter that came with it, your amazing and i love you!

arb profile image

arb 6 years ago from oregon Author

Hi Lisa! Thanks for reading and the kind words. Could only come from one who knows the battlefield.

b. Malin profile image

b. Malin 6 years ago

What a rich and rewarding read...written with lots of love and courage, and wit...It also tells me that there is a good woman by your side...and that you my friend are a happy man, who can express it all so well. Thanks for sharing...

arb profile image

arb 6 years ago from oregon Author

Good morning my friend! There is a good women by my side, I know because she tells me so. I am happy, she also tells me so. If you choose to marry, you better start laughing, otherwise it will kill you. thanks for coming by, I value your comments!

Jillian Barclay profile image

Jillian Barclay 6 years ago from California, USA

Well put! Obviously, you have learned the secrets to sustaining marriage and are not afraid to share them! This should be required reading for any men contemplating marriage! Not only will they discover that by entering into marriage they will learn the most important secrets of life, they will also learn how to keep the enemy happy!

arb profile image

arb 6 years ago from oregon Author

Good Morning Jillian! That women are only too happy to share such secrets, is testament to their nurturing nature and their unwavering willingness to help us make them happy!What more could man want of them?

Thanks for coming by and leaving a comment! I do, so appreciate your words. Be well!

QudsiaP1 profile image

QudsiaP1 6 years ago

This was just about the most fantastic hub I have ever read on marriage. Seriously, the way your phrase it and the way you flawlessly paint the image of what it is like actually makes one curious about marriage rather than fearing it.

Thank you for sharing such a wonderful experience arb.

Have a safe journey, I hope you have loads of fun in the sun but do not forget your sun screen. :)

And oh please don't decide to go shark fishing or bull fighting or free falling or pretty much anything that can kill you. Hehehe.

When you return, I want you to totally post the whole experience, considering with the intense sun we get, could trade with you any day. ;)

Have a safe trip, bless you. :)

arb profile image

arb 6 years ago from oregon Author

You have pursuaded me to keep a journal during my trip. when I return, I will post the experience in favor to my friend from Pakistan!

arb profile image

arb 6 years ago from oregon Author

By the way Qudsia, if you would like my serious take on marriage (I'm not always dedicated to comedy) read my hub, "the letter". Marriage is the greatest place I've ever been!

Micky Dee profile image

Micky Dee 6 years ago

Awesomely funny and beautiful! Useful too! Your buttons have been danced on! Great write!

arb 6 years ago

Thank you again Micky! Leaving on a cruise Sat. Suspect it will give me enough material for another 10 hubs! Ha Ha

QudsiaP1 profile image

QudsiaP1 6 years ago

Arb, I hope you are enjoying your cruise. Meanwhile I used your hub title as a sentence in an argument I had with someone on hubpages. :P

tysanders profile image

tysanders 6 years ago from Atlanta, Ga

This is awesome!! Finally a man writes something that displays the positive affects of marriage. "Marriage has taught me that home is not my castle, it's a fashion statement." How funny! Wonderfully written and voted up by me.

arb 6 years ago

tysaners! Thanks for stopping by and for the kind comments. I will make a point of doing the same.

QudsiaP1 profile image

QudsiaP1 6 years ago

Waiting for that journal you promised arb. :)

Sarah Writes profile image

Sarah Writes 6 years ago from California

I love how you say real men get married! This was wonderful, such fun to read! and p.s. my husband to found out that you can spend an entire day at Macy's doing "nothing."

arb 6 years ago

Hi Sarah! I have enjoyed your poetry and am delighted that you found laughter in reading my prose. Thanks so much for stopping by. I think you would enjoy my hub, The letter. Be well. I look forward to reading more of your work.

Loveslove profile image

Loveslove 5 years ago from England

From one who has been married TWICE..first time 7 years , present one for the past 35 years....I aplaud your sense of humour,I must show this HUB to my husband I am sure he wil find it ammusing just as I did.

Fabulous funny read

arb profile image

arb 5 years ago from oregon Author

Thanks loveslove! Marriage is the funniest place I've ever been.

Feline Prophet profile image

Feline Prophet 5 years ago from India

You make a fine, if slightly intimidating, case for marriage! :)

arb profile image

arb 5 years ago from oregon Author

Marriage is intimidating, Feline Prophet, there are 3 rolling pins in my wife's kitchen and she doesn't bake.

Thanks again for reading and taking time to comment.

Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

You nailed it on the head here arb. you have a gift for writing and placing things in context. enjoyed! will be catching up on more as i go along.

arb profile image

arb 5 years ago from oregon Author

Thank you Alastar, If I nailed it on the head, I fear you do not co habitate. congradulations.

Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 5 years ago from North Carolina

You just about got it arb!

Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 5 years ago from TEXAS

My friend's husband learned to affirm that he liked "toasted peas". hehe

Honestly - this is your forte. Your humor and take on marriage from the male's perspective is so absolutely fantastic. I'm not kidding. I literally laughed till I was crying from it. It's so GOOD!

Maybe this one wouldn't pass your wife's inspection, but probably many great comics had to face the music when they got home. I just bet she is a delight or you wouldn't be the happy person you obviously are, arb. Anyway - this is a delight to read and to get to laugh so heartily!

arb 5 years ago

That I contribute laugh to any day, warms my heart,

what ever can I say?

those who learn to laugh at marriage, light my life,

it will light their way!

Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 5 years ago from TEXAS

:-) smiles

JLClose profile image

JLClose 5 years ago from OreGONE


arb 5 years ago

JL! Thanks so much for coming by. Marriage does give us much to love and even more, that we can laugh about. Be well.

Pamela N Red profile image

Pamela N Red 5 years ago from Oklahoma

This was really fun to read. Enjoyed your insight into matrimony. I've been married a fair number of years to the same man and there is indeed a lot of compromise that goes on.

arb profile image

arb 5 years ago from oregon Author

Hello Pamela, Thanks so much for reading and for the follow. I look forward to checking your work. Be well.

CMerritt profile image

CMerritt 5 years ago from Pendleton, Indiana

arb, I have been a soldier of marriage for 28 years now. Wow, did you nail it or what?! A perfect anology.

It brought a smile to me (and maybe a tear)....naw, that would be for weinies..!!



I vote up and useful

arb profile image

arb 5 years ago from oregon Author

Hello CMerritt! welcome and thank you for the gracious comment. We weinies know a good thing when we find it. BTW thanks for the follow.

Lone Ranger 5 years ago


Just passing by and couldn't resist reading your post. What a treat! You have demonstrated a wonderful sense of humor, and even though I like to laugh myself...I find that marriage, in this day and age, is no laughing matter.

You are so right: marriage is not for the faint-hearted, but in this day and age of female entitlements, no-fault divorces, and a 60% divorce rate, it would take either a man of great faith or a real fool to take the plunge.

Finding a good woman is one of the best things a man can do for himself in this life, but the odds of finding one is remote. I think, at the end of the day, one has to get lucky, because sometimes prayers don't even help.

I am so glad that you are still married to the same woman for so many years and have lived to tell about it. Studies have shown, however, that only 10% of those married after 10 years claim to be happily married. How did you get so lucky and where do you think the rest of society is going wrong?

I realize your wife is from an earlier generation and my bet is her training and upbringing was far superior than the young women of today, who seem to suffer from narcissism and a lack of commitment, modesty, and moral aptitude.

I read a study recently that concluded that although married men live longer than single men, married men are more willing to meet death. Why do you think that is?

Having said all this, it is refreshing to hear a married man who still has a sense of humor after all these years. You certainly have a higher tolerance for pain than I do and a greater ability to laugh in the face of adversity. Perhaps there is still hope. May God smile generously upon you and yours. - L.R.

BobbiRant profile image

BobbiRant 4 years ago from New York

I just had to pay an interesting neighbor a visit and I'm glad I did. Why, in modern times, (each generation thinks it's as modern as it gets anyway) do good advice and good examples seem old fashioned? Great hub and oh so true in any generation.

arb profile image

arb 4 years ago from oregon Author

Hey bobbi! thanks for reading. Great minds write alike!

acaetnna profile image

acaetnna 4 years ago from Guildford

Ha, ha, great advice and good examples. Marriage to the right person should be forever - it m=needs working at of course!

arb profile image

arb 4 years ago from oregon Author

Thanks acaetnna, I feel like it has been forever!

growrichfast profile image

growrichfast 4 years ago from india

yeah i agree with you, great advice thanks

Angela Brummer profile image

Angela Brummer 4 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

This is great! I love the title also!

arb profile image

arb 4 years ago from oregon Author

Hello growrichfast. Thanks for reading and for the kind comment.

arb profile image

arb 4 years ago from oregon Author

Hello Angela. Thanks so much for reading. I am delighted that you enjoyed the read.

phdast7 profile image

phdast7 3 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

Alan - This was wonderful and funny and full of truth...and did I say funny? Terribly funny and right on the money. The real warriors are the married men who hang in there and fight the good fight. You are an excellent spokesman for all who are like you. :)

I am afraid that things are probably not going well or improving for poor dear Ceci. I still think about all of you and send prayers heavenward. Blessings. Theresa

suzettenaples profile image

suzettenaples 3 years ago from Taos, NM

Hilarious! You should be syndicated. You are truly a great husband and I'm pleased you have finally figured it out! You are as mighty as Gengis Khan!

arb profile image

arb 3 years ago from oregon Author

Thanks Theresa. I laughed a lot while writing it so I must have thought it funny also. Ceci is now undergoing radiation and then will have another surgery for removal of 1 lymph node. We are all hopeful and continue to bathe her in prayer. Thank you for yours.

arb profile image

arb 3 years ago from oregon Author

Hi suzette and thank you for the encouragement. Actually writing a column would be my dream come true, kinda in the Erma Bombeck vein,

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