It’s easy to fall in love, but staying in love? That’s a whole other story.
Looking into the eyes of the person you love most and not even seeing any recognition is a pain unrivaled by any other. And somehow, I feel that I am in a prison of my own making, because I traveled back in time and inadvertently altered the events of history so that I was never born, and therefore never met my wife.
The reason I traveled back in time was so I could go back to 1997 and pitch the television series The King of Queens to CBS a year before Kevin James could do so, thus making me not only a multimillionaire, but also earning me the title as the one true King of Queens. However, in a miscalculation on my part, I accidentally traveled back to the day that I would later learn was my parents’ first date.
This was the 70’s, and the world was simply not ready for The King of Queens, so I obviously couldn’t pitch the show. I figured while I was there, I’d have a few brews so the trip wouldn’t be a complete waste. But who should enter the very bar I was drinking in but a kind-looking young woman named Muriel, and Jack, who looked like the biggest nerd I had ever seen in my life.
Seeing as these are the names of my parents, this is about the time I knew they met, and they closely resembled my parents, I really should have put two and two together. Unfortunately, the brews clouded my judgment, and being a jock (I am hitting .238 in my men’s over-40 softball league), I decided to give a wedgie to Jack, seeing as jocks and nerds are natural enemies (I don’t like it, but that’s just the way the world is).
It’s a shame that I didn’t realize Jack was my father until I had pulled his underwear over his head. Immediately, I wished I could undo what I had done, but once a pair of underwear gets yanked, it cannot be unyanked.
Jack ran off, embarrassed, and never spoke to Muriel again. When I was a boy, my father once told me, “Never give your father a wedgie. You just don’t know the kind of ramifications that can yield.” If only I had listened to him…
I have tried to reignite the spark with my wife many times. I’ve brought her flowers and chocolate. I’ve scheduled us an appointment with a couple’s counselor. I’ve even tried to impress her by singing my King of Queens rap, (I am the king of Queens every single day / And I love New York in a major way / But there’s just one borough that’s dear to my heart / The city of Queens is of which I am a part), which I had planned to use as the new theme song had my attempt to create the show been successful. None of this worked to win my wife back, primarily because she has no recollection of ever meeting me.
It breaks my heart to hear the same voice that used to tell me, “Please stop putting peanut-butter on the phone so that it gets all over my face when I answer it, it’s not funny. Grow up,” now saying, “I’m sorry, I don’t believe we’ve ever met,” or “I think you have me confused with someone else,” or “Why did you write a rap based on The King of Queens?”
Marriages are stressful enough when both of you exist. Now imagine one of you was never born and therefore does not exist as an individual in the timeline that constitutes our conception of reality. It can seem downright impossible to make that work.
Also, I know what you’re wondering: why don’t I go back in time again to ensure my parents’ date goes well so that I am born?
Well, that would mean that I am essentially helping my parents get laid, and that’s just too gross for me.
Inevitably, my thoughts fall upon my wedding day, where I pledged in sickness and in health to love and cherish my wife. Does this pledge mean to love your partner even if you’ve dramatically altered the effects of the space-time continuum? Maybe not literally, but metaphorically?
Absolutely. Take a look, world: this is what a modern marriage looks like.