Thursday, February 23, 2006

Dining with Dad

I had dinner with my dad tonight. It was an impromptu event while both of our spouses worked late. Something really nice about being an adult, having dinner with your dad (especially when he pays), and realizing that you and your father actually have some things in common other than love for your kid.

We were discussing the current affairs of our clan, and the topic of my long-time bachelor uncle came up. My uncle, a successful, attractive 35 year old has never been married, in spite of the valiant effort of several women over the years. Before you say it, he's not gay. (I got "gay-dar" ...I know he's not!) He's serious about this girl right now, and is even moving in with her this week. This is a particularly bold move for someone who grew up in our very religiously conservative family. His parents, my grandparents, to this day do not buy anything on Sundays, don't approve of playing cards, or see movies in theaters. He candidly revealed to my dad recently that he has reservations about really committing to this girl in spite of his love for her because he doesn't feel the "wow" factor for her. You know...the butterflies, fliberty-gibbits, and what not. In classic form, my dad says, "That's for teenagers. I didn't feel that when I got married in my 30's either." This isn't so bad until you understand that my step-mom was sitting right there. I think my dad may have occupied the couch that night. This idea that feeling those "feelings" of love is just for the youth launched us into a long discussion about the feelings of love and whether or not they're all that important, if not even detrimental in some cases. In the end, my dad sided with it being an age thing, reserved for the emotionally immature. (Shh! Don't tell my step-mom!) I sided with it more being a personality thing, with some being people being more inclined to the emotional feelings of things. Both of us, being of a pretty practical nature, did agree that these "feelings" of love could be detrimental in some instances, keeping some people from seeing the true reality about their love interests. We both agreed that we felt pretty head over heels the first time we walked down the aisle, but that could be explained by our age...him being 19 and me being 21. He offered that he did not feel this the 2nd go round, at the ripe old age of 40. Of course, his feelings of glee could have been obscured by the fact the my sister and I were weeping with inexplicable grief on his second wedding day. (Neither of us are proud of this, nor did we expect to react this way. But for real, parents do their kids a favor by NOT making them attend their 2nd wedding.)

I guess now is the part when I ask if anyone else has an opinion on this. But please, in the interest of you not sleeping on the couch tonight, if your spouse reads this blog, please respond anonymously if you should choose to offer that your affection was defined by anything other than giddy wreckless abandon on the date of your betrothal.

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