My 30th Anniversary: What Happened?
Between the eve o' tommorow (August 13) and sometime during the weekend of the 20th, I will not be blogging, emailing, Facebooking, Twittering, Huluing, YouTubing, Yahooing, or JohnShore.comming.
I'll be as unplugged as a food processor in an Amish kitchen.
Why? Because I'll be off with my wife Catherine celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary (which, for you detail-sticklers, is on August 16).
Thirty years! Why, it seems like only yesterday that I couldn't remember a thing about the day before yesterday because I'm so old. I also now confuse easily. So I have no idea what I just wrote. And something tells me that's a plus.
That's the thing about getting old(er): worse memory; better instincts.
When I tell someone I've been married thirty years, they often respond with, "And I care why? Do I even know you? Go away." So that's pretty rude.
And now I would like to share with you some of the wisdom that I have gained from being married thirty years.
Wow. What a Godzilla-sized dud that was. In the last five minutes, the only nuggets of wisdom that came to my mind were, At least silverfish don't bite, and Car tires don't have inner tubes. Those aren't nuggets of wisdom. Those aren't even nuggets. They're barely nugs.
Bummer. I was so sure that a person who's been married thirty years would automatically be wise. But they're not.
Word to the wise.
What can't be denied is that thirty years is a long time to be married. I guess. I dunno. I do know that time is relative. If you're a 24-hour flu virus, for instance, thirty years is so long that at the very least it's time to change your name. If you're the moon, on the other hand, thirty years is barely enough time for you to get over the weirdness of having humans drop themselves down upon you, jam a flag pole into you, play a little golf on you, and then leave.
Ah, the moon. Who would have thought its surface would be exactly what everyone always thought it would be?
My wife Catherine is ridiculously funny. And, in person, she does funny in the same way I do: by often delivering her jokes with such utter deadpannedness that half the time, instead of laughing, people just wonder if she's a psycho, or what.
Man, she's funny. Girl's so sharp you bleed just walking by her.
Young people! Forget looks. Good-looking people have unreasonable expectations of others. Forget money; rich people have unreasonable expectations of reality. Forget a loving, compassionate attitude: ultimately it will only make you feel inadequate and guilty.
What you want in a spouse is funny. Everything else passes. But funny, my friend, is forever.
You know what they say: laughter is the best medicine. So remember to always laugh at sick people. It helps you; it helps them. Win-win.
You know (seriously, now) what's really weird about the thirtieth wedding anniversary? That it's the pivot anniversary. Before your thirtieth, you could, if for any reason you absolutely felt you had to, get out of your marriage. You're (usually) somewhere in your mid-fifties. Which gives you about thirty more years to live.
At your thirtieth anniversary, you know you have exactly enough time left in your life to do one more time what you just spent thirty years doing.
For a month or so now, Cat and I have found ourselves feeling this particular anniversary more than we have any of our others. And we figured out it's because this is the pivot anniversary. If your marriage were a person, it would have its mid-life crisis at thirty.
Our marriage is not in crisis. It's in the opposite of crisis.
Basically, nothing's changed. The second I met Cat I fell insanely in love with her. I've spent thirty years feeling the exact same way about her every time I see her.
You know what that ends up creating?
An enduring feeling that exactly no time at all has gone by.
Another (and, frankly, deeper) reflection on this is my Here Comes the Sun.