Lately it seems like my friends' relationships have gone through more breaks than Evel Knievel eating a KitKat bar.
A decade or so ago, I remember feeling a little irked that so many of my friends were getting married. More recently, I've started to notice that all my friends are getting divorced. My septuagenarian friends assure me this is still better than noticing all your friends are dying, but the fact remains that everyone seems to be divorced these days.
In light of this, it seems like maybe this is a good time to update the standard marriage vows. Because "As long as we both shall live, and 'til death do us part" was something originally written back when death was likely to come at around age 35 or so. People are living much longer now, so updating the marriage vows to "And 'til age 35 or so do us part", it would make a lot of sense.
It's asking a lot to stay with the same person for 50 years. Most people can't even watch a full movie on TV without flipping channels during a commercial break looking for something better. And that's just a few hours. Decades of commitment is asking a lot. That's a lot of talking about what to have for dinner, which I believe is the main activity that couples do together, based on my personal experience. Morning, noon and night, even during dinner we'll be planning the next dinner.
"I bought stuff to make beef stroganoff. No, tomorrow is my late night. So stroganoff on Saturday? Okay, so for dinner tomorrow, do you want the leftover chicken? No? Alright, because that's got to get used up, so if you don't want that, I'll have it, but then what are you going to have? No, we already finished that. No, we're doing the fish on Sunday."
Now imagine doing that every day for 40 years. That's a lot to ask of anyone, really. I love my girlfriend, I do. And I feel like our relationship has really leveled up over the years and we've shared some experience. But... there's this new game called Pokemon Go. Everyone's playing it, it's all the rage. All the Pokemon fans can view the world through their phones and suddenly they're seeing this magical thing they've never seen before. I think it's called "Outside."
Anyway, in the Pokemon games, the motto is "Gotta Catch 'Em All." You level up your favorite Pokemon and it gets lots of experience, because it's your favorite. But also there are other ones and if you stick with just one forever, you start to worry you're missing out on trying out other fun options. Maybe people are starting to play Pokemarriage Go. They're already married, but they're still going to Pikachu.
And if divorces are going to continue to be so common, I think people should start making divorce registries. A wedding registry always seemed odd to me, because you're already combining two people's stuff, and then you're asking for even more stuff. You know you're going to end up with two microwaves and too much furniture.
But a divorce registry, that's just good common sense. Someone else is walking away with half the stuff that used to be yours. You should be able to sign up for replacements! I think this is a workable idea. And maybe your ex could even log in to suggest things, like, "You're gonna need a vacuum cleaner, because I'm taking ours."
Basically, you'd end up with a big list of things you want, which you could browse on your phone, and tell yourself "Gotta Catch 'Em All."
— Seth Brown is an award-winning humor columnist, the author of "From God To Verse", and has been described as an Oddish Slowpoke. His website is RisingPun.com.