Marriage advice from famous, and not-so-famous

By Bob Huber

Here at the Making June Weddings More Meaningful Institute we’re studying ways for this year’s crop of newlyweds to stay married, or at least put up a good front.
In this regard we quote Lyndon B. Johnson when he said, “Only two things are necessary to keep one’s wife happy — one is to let her think she’s having her way, and the other, to let her have it.”
That said, we’ve taken a scholarly approach in our attempt to teach June brides and grooms how to be successfully married. We’ve spent years researching what’s been said, pro and con, by leaders in the sciences, the arts, politics, and the pool rooms of America.
Hidden inside all this hyperbole is the wisdom of the ages, and all young couples should take heed. Here is what we found:
• The Greek philosopher Anonymous: “All marriages are happy. It’s living together afterwards that causes all the trouble.”
• Abraham Lincoln: “Marriage isn’t heaven or hell. It’s purgatory.”
• Thomas Szasz: “Men hate waiting while wives shop for clothes. Women hate waiting, often their entire lives, while husbands shop for fame and fortune.”
• Samuel Johnson: “Marriage — the triumph of imagination over reason.”
• Samuel Johnson again: “Second marriage — the triumph of hope over experience.”
• Michel de Montaigne: “The perfect marriage is between a blind wife and a deaf husband.”
• That Greek philosopher again: “If a woman does housework for $100 a week, that’s cruel domestic service. If she does it for nothing, that’s matrimony.”
• Groucho Marx: “Matrimony is a process that makes strange bedfellows.”
• Franklin D. Roosevelt: “Marriage is a process by which the grocer gets an account the haberdasher used to have.”
• Ethel Watts Mumford: “Matrimony is a banquet in the Chinese style — you start with the sweetmeat and end in the soup.”
• Tom Kardashian: “We’ve found our marriage works best when I make the big decisions and my wife makes the small ones. I can’t recall any big ones.”
• That same old Greek: “Before criticizing your husband’s faults, remember that they may have prevented him from getting a better wife.”
• Anne Gilchrist: “When I married Mr. Right, I didn’t know his first name was Always.”
• Mary Roberts Rinehart: “Love is like chicken pox — the older you get, the worse the attack.”
• Lily Tomlin: “If love is the answer, could you rephrase the question?”
• Frank Briggs: “Advice to the groom — Never do anything around the house that you don’t want to do the rest of your life.”
• Jacob Braude: “Marriage is like a violin — after the beautiful music is over, the strings are still attached.”
• Gracie Allen: “George would never chase another woman. He’s too fine, too decent, too old.”
• Mae West: “Marriage is a great institution, but I’m not ready to be institutionalized.”
• Harlan Miller: “The guy who boasts he never made a mistake is often married to a woman who did.”
• Phyllis Diller: “Never go to bed mad. Stay up and fight.”
• Fortune cookie: “Marriage is like the army — everyone complains, but they re-enlist anyway.”
• Roseanne: “You marry the man of your dreams, but 10 years later you’re married to a couch that burps.”
• Rodney Dangerfield: “Keeping a secret from my wife is like trying to smuggle daylight past a rooster.”
• Bob Huber: “When I met Marilyn, I felt God reach down from the sky, whap me alongside the head, and say, ‘This one, dummy!’”

Bob Huber is a retired journalist living in Portales.