Home
In this issue
April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 12, 2006 / 14 Iyar, 5766

A mother's request

By Tom Purcell


Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | I'm afraid to ask my mother what she wants for Mother's Day this year. Last year, her request was unreasonable.


"You have six months to marry!" she said.


The truth is that I long to be married — happily married. Mark Twain found such happiness with his wife. He wrote that there is no greater beauty and sweetness than the closeness of a husband and wife who adore each other, and that is what I long for.


But it's hard to find women to adore these days. And that's partly ma's fault.


You see, my ma is one in a million. She was born with the gift of clarity. She knows what really matters and what really doesn't. Here's what matters: people, family, honesty, beauty, laughter. Here's what doesn't: power, status, material things and most anything worldly.


My ma laughs easily at the most simple things. The only thing she likes more than laughing is making other people laugh. Years ago, ma used to stage children's parties, where she would entertain with her puppets and stories, or dress up as Big Bird or a clown.


Well, one day, while dressed as a clown, she got pulled over by the police. Apparently, there was a bank robbery by someone dressed as a clown, and ma was, at that moment, the leading suspect. Her response: great heaping fits of laughter.


But she's dead serious where it matters. She never took guff from any doctor, when she believed the doctor wasn't paying close enough attention to one of her loved ones. She'd research the ailment obsessively until she knew more about it than the doc, and then she'd demand, and get, the care she wanted.


She is also dead serious about virtues of every kind, and they better be present, loud and clear, in her children and grandchildren. She sits back for a good long while when one of us goes astray, not to intervene until we near the cliff. Thus, the e-mails she began sending to me:


"You have five months, one week, four days, two hours and 12 minutes to get married!"


But, ma, I tried to explain. The world is so complex these days. It's not like the old days when you got a job, worked 35 years, then retired. The world is moving at light speed. It's much harder to find a woman you can stay with forever.


"You have four months, two weeks, six days, 12 hours and three minutes!"


But, ma, I said, being 44 today isn't like it was when you were young — 44 is the new 34! And I'm going to live until at least 100. If I marry now, that means I'll be married for 56 years. That's even too long to do something fun!


"You have three months, three weeks, five days, 18 hours and 12 minutes!"


But, ma, I said, I've got the world by its tail. People don't marry the way they used to. There are lots of single women out there in every age group. Why would I want to pick just one!


"You have two months, three weeks, six days, seven hours and 18 minutes!"


But, ma, I said, any fool can get married. Half of my friends are divorced already. I don't want that. I want to feel about my wife the way Mark Twain felt about his — I want to adore her, just as my dad adores his wife.


In fact, the only women who can invoke adoration are the women whose lives are a celebration of what really matters: family, people, laughter, honesty, beauty. But do you know how hard it is to find these qualities anymore?


So many people these days are consumed by their careers and their things. That includes single women. They work long hours, drive nice cars, vacation at nice places. As they climb the corporate ladder, they are stressed and fatigued and too busy to delight in the simple beauty that is so evident to my ma. I hold no interest in such worldliness, so how can I possibly adore a woman who does?


Ma had but one response to that:


"You have two months, one week, three days, two hours and six minutes to marry!"

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on JWR Contributor Tom Purcell's column, by clicking here. To visit his web site, click here.


ARCHIVES

© 2006, Tom Purcell

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles