The sparkle from the brand new diamond ring caught my eye from a distance, a northern light to which all of humanity aspired. The 40-something mother, held her daughter’s hand up toward the barista, “Look at what Brook has to show you”. The cute 20-something daughter blushed as her hand was grabbed from the comfort of her body and thrust forward, a blue-ribbon to be proudly displayed.
I looked on in disbelief of such a typical scenario, even now, in 2010. The idea of marriage pervades us like a 16th Century plague, some are lucky enough to live through it, others, end up just slowly decomposing, spending their days looking for a remedy. It is an ideal that little girls dream of, and parents encourage, and soon the dress and the ring and the pretty party invitations become the focus. Fuck the people that are exchanging the vows. The divorce rate in Canada sits at a cool 38% and yet still we WANT our young people to settle down and have babies; to rush to the altar, most likely leaving their carefree ways and needs of their twenties for just ONE other person, who may or may not be there for them in 20 years; hell, 5 years is even a stretch to some.
Does anyone really believe that ‘till death do you part’ bullshit. Monogamy may be the way of the Christian (actually, most religions) world, but I am pretty sure that it is not the evolutionary way. No, back in the caveman days, the clan would be the groom and the bride all in one and the babies would be raised by all of them. Indeed, another bona fide screw-up by Jesus and the lot, no doubt influenced greatly by property attainment and the need for verified heirs. Today, if you are a single parent, you also run a 30% chance of living below the poverty line. It just keeps getting better! Get married, and have kids, THEN Divorce.
Don’t get me wrong, it is not that I don’t believe that you can have a ‘soul mate’ and be happy and compatible for years, even decades together, I just don’t believe that we should be so attached to the notion of it. Twenty year olds need to forget the ideology that the engagement ring is the Holy Grail of life and in its pursuit, leave behind the pot-of-gold that they are sitting upon – their youth and their freedom, for the 62% chance that it may work out.