Last Modified: Oct 1, 1995

Skippy's Guide to Life and Eternal Happiness

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The Family Column

Much thought has been wasted lately on family. You know the thought, you're walking down the street, minding your own business. Then... BAM, here they come , the stroller people. A mom, a dad, the stroller, the nuclear ideal. The defenses kick in automatically, if you are with a friend it's a race to see who can come up with the snide remark fastest. If you are alone, well then you put on the proper scowl and charge past that little scene of domestic bliss as quickly as possible. I know these thoughts won't apply to all of you, many are still too young to catch this drift. When you start counting back through the years and realize that you are older than you're parents were when they had you...well then you will start to understand.

I'm not a believer in the "we are meant to be alone" school of thought. It just turns out that I've been attending a lot of their classes. Don't misunderstand, this is not about love and marriage, this is about family. When I see a young couple walking down the street I don't feel as though I'm missing anything special. I've been in couple mode more times than I'd care to admit and usually you just want out of it. I mean it's great around the holidays and all but long-term? Way too scary for the Skipster to get involved in a long term relationship. And yet I'm talking about commitment, enough commitment to say "let's create a new life that we will be responsible for for the next 50 years or so". That's the real thing friends, that's what we all want, as much as we would like to think we are above it, we all come back to procreation eventually.

Lest you think for a moment that Skippy is softening, let me assure you that I don't want anyone twisted enough to read this column to have children. That is a different and more frightening vibe entirely. No, I'm talking about ol' Skippy here (me talking about me, what a shock eh?). I suppose it's programmed in our genetic makeup to start thinking these thoughts at a certain time in our lives. We reach a point where we realize that this life is all we really have to play with, and we've spent most of it asleep (re: passed out). When you start to have these unsettling thoughts and rest assured you will. You are faced with an ugly decision, do you settle for less than the ideal in order to get what you want? If you go with this option, then you really aren't getting what you want, are you? An entire life of wondering if you did the right thing. Staring at those seventy year olds in the mall holding hands and knowing you could have had that if you had just waited a little while longer. So then do you stand firm on your principles and wait for the person capable of holding your attention for the next 60 or so years? Fine idea in theory, but how can we be sure that that 'someone' is even out there? Perhaps we met them at a party five years ago and were too drunk to notice. All in all it's kind of like using the lotto as your retirement plan, if you hit it your problems are solved, but look at the odds. Maybe you do the very nineties thing of having the kid on your own? Get real, most of us have trouble committing to lunch all by ourselves. The reason most of us get married in order to have children is because we figure the other person will be the responsible one. You know, make sure the kid is fed and clothed and goes to school.

After thinking these thoughts for a week or so I personally always come back to the 'wait for the right one' plan of inaction. It's a principles thing for me, no matter how much I think I want a family and all the rest. I just can't see settling for less than the ideal to get it, some things just aren't worth the price you have to pay. Besides, the other plans seem like a whole lot of work just to have a kid, especially when the schoolyards are full of them if you reeeeally want one.


Back to the Tank

Skippy's Columns:
Skippy Looks at the TV Season
An Open Letter to Mr. Bob Dole
Let us Bow Our Heads in Prayer
The Family Column
Random Ideas
Why is Skippy Here?

Questions, problems, concerns? (complaints you can keep to yourself, I have enough problems) write skippy!

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