Monday, November 9, 2015

Incompatibility Makes a Great Marriage (the Snyders Told Me So)

“Barb and I HAVE found a couple of areas we DO have in common. We were married on the same day . . . and have the same kids, but that's the END of our compatibility--except our commitment to each other, and that's what makes the whole thing work.” --Chuck Snyder

About 20 years ago (I cannot believe it’s been that long!), I was driving home from my part-time job one night, and I had the pleasure of hearing Chuck and Barb Snyder on a radio program. They were discussing their book Incompatibility: Grounds for a Great Marriage. The Snyders refer to themselves as the world’s most incompatible couple. I thought they were one of the most delightful couples also (and even though I was single at the time, I immediately bought that book and still enjoy reading through it). One of the most fun parts of the book is that the couple started a running list of ways that they were incompatible; they kept adding to the list for the rest of their 58-year marriage (sadly, Chuck passed away two years ago).

Frankly, I think that almost any time a man marries a woman, a list like theirs exists. Sometimes we complement each other like chocolate and peanut butter . . . and then there are those other times . . . .

Y’all, I just had to take a stab at creating a list like the Snyders’. Maybe we’re not the world’s most incompatible couple, but we might be in the running!
Mister thinks that York peppermint patties are a waste of perfectly good chocolate. I just love them . . . so refreshing.
Mister yearns for fall. He loves the crisp air, football season, and trips to the mountains. To me, fall means saying goodbye to my white purse, weather that’s too chilly for my flip flops, and flu germs.
Mister loves Christmas with its heavy food and many gatherings; I prefer a lounge chair, a glass of sweet tea, and a summer afternoon.
Mister wears shoes all the time. I mean ALL THE TIME. The man puts a pair of shoes on if he has to pee in the middle of the night. Let’s just say that when I get a pedicure, even if I tip well, they probably lose a little revenue with the cost of their foot paddles.
Mister likes to blast 80’s music or heavy metal in his truck. I’d rather listen to 70’s music or classical.
He would prefer to drive. I would prefer to ride.
Mister: If you’re not 15 minutes early, you’re late. Me: If you’re early to a party, the hostess might still be contemplating what earrings to wear.
Mister: Speed limits are to be strictly obeyed, as are ALL rules. Me: Just use common sense and be nice to people and you’ll be fine.
As uptight as he is about rules, Mister is a bit more laid-back about germs. He says, for example, that shopping carts won’t kill our children. I scrub them down with Purell wipes and then put a fabric cover on them.
Mister is lactose-intolerant. I’ve spent many a tender night with Ben and his good friend Jerry.
Mister believes that Facebook is breeding ground for disagreements, nosy people, and immoral behavior. I just can’t wait to get on there and see which friend has posted a picture of her child’s swimming lessons.
One time I called Books a Million to order a book that he wanted (to read for pleasure), and the customer service rep asked me if she needed to hold it “in case the whole class needs a copy”? (That still kills me.) While his nose is buried in nerdy history books, I’m glued to a Rachel Hauck book or perusing Woman’s Day.
He’s a man of few words, but I say why use a one-word reply when a couple of paragraphs are so much more friendly?
Last beach trip: he’s taking pictures of the helicopter flying over the ocean. I’m trying to capture artsy pictures of our children playing in the water.
Same trip: I heard a scratching noise outside the laundry room door, so I turned on the lights and discovered a family of SIX raccoons. Country Boy starts tapping the window to scare them away, while City Girl dashes to the living room to grab the camera.
He loves meat. I crave salads.
He gets up early—EARLY—on weekends and cooks a big breakfast. I’ve found that his big breakfasts re-heat very nicely in the microwave two hours later.
My summer splurge beverage: sweet peach tea. His summer splurge beverage: a post-grass-cutting icy beer.
I’ve mentioned my fondness for bare feet. For some reason, he gets a big smile when I wear boots. My feet feel all cooped up and claustrophobic, but I wear the dang things for him.
Mister dearly loves all things electronic. He says that if it weren’t for him, I would still have a giant bag phone under the passenger seat of my car “to call someone in case the car breaks down.”
He believes that shopping should entail purchasing exactly what you went into the store to purchase. I feel that there should be room for browsing, price comparing, bargain hunting, and maybe spotting something cute that my friend would like for her birthday next year.
Classic movie for him: Blazing Saddles. Classic movie for me: The Sound of Music.
He’s a Type A. I’m a Type B (but only because there doesn’t seem to be a Type G).
He gets angry when he’s hungry, so he grabs whatever is available and eats it immediately; I tend to pace around the kitchen and peruse the cabinets until I feel nauseated from low blood sugar.
When it comes to toothpaste, mints, and gum, he’s all about spearmint and I prefer peppermint (green packaging for him, blue for me).
When we were attempting to name our daughter, I thought every name I suggested was romantic and feminine. He called them all “hippie names.”
Mister votes the same way every election (and he never misses an opportunity to vote). Now, I feel very strongly about voting. I imagine that my female ancestors would be pretty hacked off if I blew off voting to, say, browse in the scrapbook store instead (it happened ONE TIME). But while Mister tends to vote based on specific requirements, I occasionally peruse articles to see if anyone mentions more personal items, such as who drinks sweet tea, what the candidate’s dog’s name is, and who might prefer boxers to briefs.
Someone once asked the big question, “What is the most romantic song of all time?” Goodness, I started thinking then, and I still haven’t come up with an answer. After a half a second, my beloved blurted, “Pour Some Sugar on Me.”


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