I don’t want my marriage to be Everybody Loves Raymond.

I’m terrified of living a sitcom marriage.

I was watching a rerun of Everybody Loves Raymond on TBS, and was saddened by how the show depicted marriage. Shouldn’t it be more fun than that? Is that what happens a few years after the wedding – life solidifies into a routine and you only have sex on Tuesday and Thursday?

I watched the rest of the episode, terrified. Is that what we have to look forward to? We jump through flaming hoops of romance in our teens and twenties, and it’s all so goddam exciting. I can’t accept the idea that all those adventures eventually lead to me and my future wife sitting at the breakfast table reading newspapers and ignoring the hell out of each other. Is it inevitable? Must the spice disappear?

I hope not. Ideally, I’d want the romance in my life to be one long Ten Things I Hate About You paintball scene. Remember it?

Is it unrealistic to expect that sort of sparkling romance from the rest of my life? Yeah, probably. But that’s the ideal I seek.

The studio audience for Everybody Loves Raymond can’t get enough. It’s a funny show. They say that good comedy comes from truth, and that’s what kills me. How true is the show to real life? I hope not very.

We all know marriages in real life that look flat and tiring. But it’s not my job to relate on things that happen in the real world. I’m sure Dear Abby has an online home somewhere. I’m only here to connect real life to pop culture. Real life crystallizes and simplifies when it transfers to TV. It makes it easier to step back and see things. Because you have an actual TV to step back from and see things.

When I stepped back from 22 minutes of Everybody Loves Raymond, I came to a realization: I don’t want that! Tell me I’m not crazy. Tell me things don’t have to end up that way. Tell me romance exists after the honeymoon.

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