The Marriage Test

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Why isn't there a premarital test to see if a couple is actually ready to be married? Even after much debate, the subject never came up before the state of New York recently allowed gay marriage.  It is time to require all couples, gay and straight, to prove they have what it takes for wedlock without headlock.

From my experience, there are three important tests to see if a couple is ready for marriage:

First test: Learn to kayak in open water. Test must be conducted in a two-person kayak with mismatched paddles and uncomfortable, poorly adjusted seats.  Learning on a placid lake is first date stuff.  You really don't know the upper and lower boundaries of love and affection until you have shared a kayak off Mazatlan in rough sea, while the guide swamps you with his motorboat. One extra point is given for each 25 pound weight difference and each 6 inch height difference between partners.

Second test: Assemble Ikea furniture together. Parts is parts, except when the parts are a,b,c and the instructions aren't even 1,2,3.  Penalty points deducted for cuts, scrapes, foul language and remarking whose idea it was to buy the item in the first place. One point deducted for each part left over and each pre-drilled hole not utilized. Assembled items must remain functional until warranty and return periods have elapsed.

Third test: Buy real estate together.  Living together is just a fun game compared to buying a house, closing escrow and moving in.  Buying real estate involves picking and choosing, negotiating every last detail of money and finance, and pest control, which includes relatives, in-laws, neighbors, solicitors and flaky BFF's in the building trades.  If you can buy a house together and still be in love, if you can still feel the equality, if you can still say "for richer or for poorer" with a straight face and without sarcasm or expletives, it's a good sign your marriage will last.


Any couple passing these three tests is ready for marriage.   Separate longer and more difficult tests are required for becoming parents.

With a Perspective, I'm Phil Gravitt.