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“Welcome to the Happy Cab!” the Chicago taxi driver exclaimed in a voice much too loud as I entered his taxi at Randolph and Michigan one early morning last week. “Happy cab?” I questioned, totally not in the mood for enthusiastic conversation that early in the morning. “What do you mean, ‘happy cab’?” He then went on to explain how, after a life filled with many challenges and depressing struggles, he came to the realization that he could make a difference for people, right where he was – driving his cab - by controlling the atmosphere of his cab and making it a happy one.
Creating Happiness (Photo from www.theminimalists.com)
I am an old school lover. I believe in opening a door for a lady when we approach one, offering my seat to a woman who is standing, remembering to put the toilet seat down and, of course, helping my lady to orgasm first. The latter belief may be more from the “New School” of thought than the “Old School” one, and I can not truthfully swear that I am successful at it 100 percent of the time. But I give it the old college try every time and I definitely believe that it’s the gentlemanly, as well as the intelligent, thing to do.
I watch in awesome wonder
As winter’s on the wing
And our God in loving kindness
Sends the season we call “spring.”
~ Kay Hoffman
Spring is my favorite time of year. It always falls about two and a half months after New Year’s Day – that day when I felt so good about my life, my hopes and my expectations for the coming year. That two and a half months is usually just enough time to help me realize that I better get “back on the horse” and begin to focus on my goals again. For the year is passing swiftly and summer is just around the corner.
Spring in Chicago! (Photo from www.worldbusinesschicago.com)
Chicago is one tough city. There is a certain sternness about its people. We are friendly, even helpful, but don’t ever take our kindness for weakness. My Grandfather used to call it being “friendly but not familiar”. Be friendly but don’t tell details of your life to strangers. Be friendly but protect yourself at all times.
These are just pet peeves – not necessarily facts or absolute spiritual laws – just pet peeves.
The person who says “No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Uh uh, uh uh, nooooooo way. I’m not doing that! Uh uh, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, absolutely not! Noooo.” Damn it! Just say “no” once and shut the hell up!
“Do you promise to love, honor and cherish… as long as you both shall live?”
Right outta the gate, you’re making promises that you can’t keep. Love is a feeling. If you treat me like shit, I’m not gonna have a feeling of love for you. So how can I promise that I’m gonna love you “’til death do us part?” It’s a fundamentally flawed vow!
Think About Your Vows (Photo from www.weddings-paradise.com)
Now, I do believe, strongly, in the other parts of the vow – the honor and cherish part. These are legitimate actions. I can honor you even if I’m mad at you. I can cherish you even if I don’t feel like it. And I think they should add “appreciate” to the vows. Take out “love” and add “appreciate”. ’Cause when it really comes down to it, you can’t regulate a person’s love for you, so why try. They either love you or they don’t!
And “love” is very much overrated anyway. Tiger Woods, Jesse James and many of the other infamous philanderers loved their wives dearly. What they didn’t do is appreciate what they had while they had it. Your woman totally needs to be appreciated. And appreciation can be quantified!
So, the new wedding vows should read, “Do you promise to honor, cherish and appreciate your bride as long as you both shall live?” And your answer is: ”I do”. Or “I will”. Or whatever we’re supposed to say.
But we really should honor, cherish and appreciate our women. For out of all the hard-legged dudes that shot plenty of game her way, over the years, she has chosen you. She sees something different in you – something unique. So treat her like the royal princess that she is. Cherish her as you would a gem. And you will reap what you sow.
Try to remember that you don’t deserve her. She is a gift that you did not earn. Your advanced degrees don’t qualify you to receive her. The $600,000 in your various investment accounts doesn’t give you the right to her devotion. Your good looks, nor any of your other skills, possessions, awards or honors, don’t guarantee you that such an amazing woman will want to live the rest of her life with you. So treat her with the awe that she deserves.
She is priceless and irreplaceable - mostly because she absolutely adores you. It is so difficult for us guys to get this through our thick heads. ‘Cause we think we’re so cool. We think we’re so smart and so talented. We think we’re so witty and macho and tough. But, trust me, when you witness your woman giving birth to a beautiful baby – that is when you will see true toughness.
Also remember that your lady has many other options should she ever choose to exercise them. So don’t ever get lax with your adherence to these vows. Beyonce is right when she says a woman can “have another you in a minute. In fact, he’ll be here in a minute, baby.” So take all of this into account as you journey down the path called “your relationship”. You’re welcome!
Honor, cherish and appreciate your wife to be, and (nine times out of ten) she will turn your house into a home. Honor, cherish and appreciate your girl, and she will show you a world of love that you probably would never have had access to. Honor, cherish and appreciate your lady, and she will always have your back through the good times and the bad. Because if you do all of these things for your lovely bride, she sure as hell better!
I have heard it said that silence is golden. And in many instances, I agree. When I am trying to sleep, I appreciate silence. It is also highly desirable when I am reading or otherwise trying to concentrate. But there are many circumstances when silence is not golden. When people are suffering, when evil is flourishing or when ignorance is running rampant the last thing that we need under these circumstances is silence. In fact, as Martin Luther King, Jr. so eloquently said, “The most urgent, the most disgraceful, the most shameful and the most tragic problem is silence.”
And so, with that in mind, I rise to voice my concerns on the assault of one of my associates from theBrideScoop. Dr. Tim, a gay man, was headbutted and thrown to the ground on a street in Bloomington, Illinois, last weekend, after he objected to another man using the word “faggot”.
My personal views on gay rights have evolved over the last ten years. There was a time when I was a bit put off by public displays of affection from same sex couples. Heck, I might even still be a bit squeamish about it sometimes. I’m not sure if it’s how we’re raised, our religious views or our own fears and prejudices that color our opinions about the world around us and how we presume it should be. The fact is, we sometimes are insensitive to and not completely comfortable with the myriad of relationships that are exhibited before us – be they same sex couples, couples of different races or May/December romances. We are sometimes uncomfortable.
I have gradually become much more comfortable with peoples differences. But what changed for me, over the last decade, is that by working with many gay and lesbian people, networking with them and getting to know them I came to the realization that any discomfort that I may feel is not more important than their right to love whomever they love, express that love and live true to who they are as human beings. That just sounds like common sense to me. But like I said, my views have evolved over time.
After getting to know some gentlemen – through work and other social occasions – who happened to be gay, I began to look at them not as their sexual orientation, but simply as John, Todd, Gus, Tim, Mark, Romeo, Joe and Sam. And that is an important point to make. Education – that is, knowledge about and involvement and familiarity with people who are different from you – can help dissolve our fears and ignorance.
Whether you believe in guarantying basic human rights to same-sex couples or not, hopefully it turns your stomach to hear that a man was beaten solely because of his sexual orientation. Hopefully that is unacceptable to you. Hopefully it’s intolerable. And, if it is true that “the most shameful and the most tragic problem in the world is silence,” hopefully, you have something of value to say about this too. “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
And while it is a criminal act to assault anyone, it is an unjust act to assault someone because he is gay. We can no longer remain silent when we observe intolerance and prejudice as we go about our daily lives. We need to hear the voices of well meaning people of character yelling their displeasure whenever it surfaces!
Pass it on! We can’t afford the silence anymore.
Bobby Brooks is no stranger to heartbreak. And now this Chicago heartthrob speaks about his trials and tribulations with the opposite sex. Help him discover more by “communicating” with Bobby on facebook and twitter.
101 AWESOME Wedding Planning Do's & Don'ts features theBrideScoop Editor Claudia Zompa, Tatiana Abramova, Beth Bernstein, Michelle Durpetti, Email Elizabeth for Etiquette, Suzanne Ko, Peggy Lambert & Stacey Roney. 101 Wedding Planning Do's & Don'ts from "Just Engaged!" to "Married! Now what?" and everything in between! More Info »
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