Thursday, December 29, 2005

The Best Marital Advice I Never Followed (A Post for Women Only)

At some point in the years Uncle Pookie and I were an unmarried couple, I saw in a women's magazine Judith Viorst (Judith Guest? somebody) offering her best marital advice: "Never ask your husband what he wants for dinner. He doesn't know."

I don't want to sound sexist, but my ongoing testing of this piece of advice suggests it is sound. Okay, my test sample is limited to one, but the testing has been extensive. During the past eleven years (our anniversary is tomorrow) I have asked my husband thousands of times what he wants for dinner. He has known approximately three times. On each of those occasions, it was at the end of a long, tiring day we'd spent out somewhere and my question went something like, "I'm exhausted and don't feel like cooking anything much more troublesome than scrambled eggs, what would you like that's easy?" and he responded with a time-consuming request. Once it was homemade pizza; I'm flattered he likes my homemade pizza and it's not overly troublesome on an ordinary day, but anything that requires the making of homemade yeast dough and pizza sauce and chopping a lot of things up is not an appropriate answer to "What do you want for dinner that is quick and easy?" So the conclusion of this ongoing experiment is that husbands don't, as a rule, know what they want for dinner and if your husband should once in a blue moon happen to know, it will be something impossible.

And note that the experiment is ongoing. Somehow I can't stop asking.

Young women about to be married should learn from my mistake and never start asking. Oh, and they might also want to check out my Anniversary Guide and my favorite quote about marriage.


Dymphna said...

I belong to the take or leave school of dinner. The only time I ask my husband what he wants for dinner is Christmas, Thanksgiving and his birthday.

Suzanne said...

[laughing] That's a good approach. I think I have a mental problem that makes me keep asking when I know I shouldn't bother.