Today is Thursday, July 27, 2017

Introducing Mr. and Mrs. Bridezilla Maybe?

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But Proverbs 2:12-15 lets us know there is some safety for us in threshing through the old to understand, to find the valuable, whatever change has done. Wisdom will save you from the ways of wicked men, from men whose words are perverse, who leave the straight paths  to walk in dark ways, who delight in doing wrong and rejoice in the perverseness of evil, whose paths are crooked and who are devious in their ways.

So why am I drum rolling from so far for this question? Because announcing newly married people as “Mr. and Mrs. Biff and Bunny Jones” is a response, I think poorly put, to a very major issue of our time and a whopping fifty plus years of the previous century: gender. We have been struggling, somewhere, somebody, with this for much longer as women, some rather famously like Florence Nightingale, sought to enter medicine, teaching, law, literature and more.

We have had such difficulties with finding worth in each other; finding capacity, talent, genius, vision, leadership in each other. The fighting styles of the gender warriors (and they’re on both sides) have often been strident, dismissive, and judgmental. The battle seemed to belong in the big cities or universities; the rest of us (men and women) were busy. But one day, Ms was no longer so strange; one day it seemed familiar to say, “Everyone pick up his or her books.” Hyphenated names cropped up in small towns.  Some women married and refused to take their husband’s name.

What? Why, one of the delights of a bride used to be practicing her new name, a practice begun in, say, seventh grade. Movie stars like Barbara Stanwyck, we all believed, used their name professionally, but at home delighted in being (before the divorce), Mrs. Robert Taylor. Barbara Taylor.

Names needed to be chosen carefully so the gender was apparent. None of Johnny Cash’s “A Boy Named Sue,” please. Girls might take on a feminized version of their father’s name (Edwina, Edwarda, Johnny Sue, Mary Clyde) but a boy would take his mother’s family name at most, which is, after all, what she took from her father. No masculine versions of Susan or Elizabeth. Spelling indicated gender (always with exceptions): Francis (male), Frances (female); Marion (male), Marian (female). Now it’s Morgan or Kelly for both sexes.

The wedding announcement our QP of T (Question Person of Today) questions is someone’s effort to bridge the gap. The bride is taking the groom’s name, but the couple seems to have chosen not to be Mr. and Mrs. Biff Jones, but a unit of Joneses named Biff and Bunny. Or perhaps the one officiating at the wedding has been worn down with belligerent brides saying, “I’m a person in my own right.” 

There’s a social gap here, change not arrived or completed in the direction it seems to be going. If the couple dislikes, “Mr. and Mrs. Biff Jones,” then the introduction could have been a simple, “Introducing for the first time, Mr. and Mrs. Jones.” Or “…Biff and Bunny Jones.”

At least no one’s murmuring, “Here comes the bride, big, fat, and wide.” And haven’t we enjoyed the word bridezilla? Are there groomzillas out there? 

“Six Words with Two Meanings” (Thanks, RW) •1. THINGY (thing-ee) n. Female... Any part under a car's hood.  Male... Anything on women’s clothing. • 2. VULNERABLE (vul-ne-ra-bel) adj.  Female... Fully opening up one's self emotionally to another.  Male... Playing football with only three defenders. • 3. COMMUNICATION (ko-myoo-ni-kay-shon) n.  Female... The open sharing of thoughts and feelings with one's partner.  Male... Leaving a note before taking off on a fishing trip with the boys. • 4. COMMITMENT (ko-mit-ment) n.  Female.... A desire to get married and raise a family.  Male... Trying not to hit on other women while out with this one. • 5. ENTERTAINMENT (en-ter-tayn-ment) n.  Female... A good movie, concert, play or book.  Male... Anything that can be done while drinking beer. • 6. REMOTE CONTROL (ri-moht kon-trohl) n.  Female... A device for changing from one TV channel to another. Male... A device for scanning through all 375 channels every 5 minutes.          “Two Gender Jokes” (Thanks, RW)

• She said: What do you call a women who knows where her husband is every night? He said: A widow.

• He said: Why are married women heavier than single women?  She said: Single women come home, see what's in the fridge and go to bed. Married women come home, see what's in bed and go to the fridge.

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