Something I saw posted... (Score:5, Funny)
by D. Mann on Tuesday August 13, @09:10PM (#4066624)
(User #86819 Info | http://www.unhelpful.org)
This wasn't written by me; I copied it off of the somethingawful.com forums.
Actual conversation between me and my girlfriend:
Me: If we get engaged, don't expect much in the way of a ring. I'm pretty broke.
Her: It's OK. I don't need a very expensive ring.
Me [uneasy at the qualifier "very"]: ... because your brother just got engaged, and that ring he gave her was pretty impressive...
Her: Yes, it was beautiful! I'd love to have a ring like that!
Me: ... and I'm worried that anything I could give you wouldn't measure up to that.
Her: Don't be silly. I wouldn't want more than you could afford.
Me: Define "afford."
Her: Two months' salary is normal.
Me [calculating]: Um... wow. That would be, like, $4000. That's a lot.
Her: Gross, dear, not net. It would be more like $6000.
Me: Who makes up these rules?
Her: That's just the custom, honey.
Me: You know that's just a marketing gimmick started by the diamond cartels around the turn of the century, don't you?
Her: Silly. I don't need an expensive ring.
Me: The conversation up to this point notwithstanding?
Her: Two months' salary is normal. It's not expensive.
Me: So if you found, say, $6000 worth of computer hardware on our joint credit card, I could say "Hey, that's not expensive; it's just what computers cost!"
Her: That's different. That would be just for you. The ring is for both of us.
Me: So I get to wear this ring part of the time?
Her: Silly. The ring shows everyone how much you love me.
Me: And what shows everyone how much you love me?
Her: The ring.
Me: Do you see a certain asymmetry in this arrangement?
Her: You should be proud that everyone sees me wearing your ring. It tells the world how much you value me.
Me: Approximately $6000 worth, apparently. Does this mean that rich men value their wives more than poor men?
Her: No. It's two months' salary for everyone.
Me: Ah, so wives are priced on a sliding scale, then, like low-income housing?
Her: I wouldn't put it that way.
Me: How would you put it?
Her: A little money is a small price to pay for something that lasts forever.
Me: You lifted that directly from a jewelery commercial.
Her: That doesn't make it untrue.
Her: Look, if you live to be 80...
Me: I don't like that "if."
Her [ignoring me]: ... and you're 33 now, that's $6000 divided by 47 years of marriage. That's like, $130 a year. You spend more than that on video games.
Me: I'm alarmed at how quickly you arrived at that number.
Her [ignoring me]: $130 a year isn't so much for my love, is it?
Me: Well, it's a good deal cheaper than escort services.... OW! OW! Quit hitting; I'm driving here!
Her: You get a lot more from this relationship than sex.
Me: Yeah, the contusions make it all worthwhile.
Me: Y'know, this actually works out better for you if I die early. Your yearly value increases inversely to the length of my life. If I only live to 50....
Her: I'm tired of talking about this.
Me: That's because you're losing.
Her: I'm not losing. We're not competing. You told me you couldn't afford an expensive ring, and I said that was OK.
Me: Ah, so it's the "affording" part that's irrelevant.
Her: Stop being so silly. I've bought jewelry on credit before; it's no big deal.
Me: That's the solution!
Her: What is?
Me: You buy the ring.
Her: That's not how it works, honey.
Me: If people look at the ring to see how much I love you, wouldn't it make sense to get the most expensive ring available? You've got better credit than me, so....
Her: But the point is for you to buy it, so people can see how much you value me.
Me: How are people going to know who bought it? Do the salespeople engrave the credit card holder's name on the band?
Her: I'll know.
Me: Well, yes, that's a given.
Her: I'll know you didn't want to pay for my ring.
Me: I thought we'd established that.
Her: I'm tired of talking about this. Forget it.
Me: I'm trying to understand, really. We're supposed to have a token of our love, right?
Her: Whatever. Right.
Me: This token is something you would want anyway, a piece of jewelry.
Me: Bear with me. The token is sized for you, presumably styled the way I think you'd like it...
Her: Actually, I get to pick it out.
Me: Even better for my purposes. So the token is styled just for you, sized so only you can wear it. You keep it with you always. Do we both own it?
Her: No, the bride owns the ring always.
Me: OK. So you get a ring that may or may not be expensive, depending on your definition, which is your exclusive property to do with as you please. I get to pay for it. Remember what I said about asymmetry?
Her: So you want a ring?
Me: No. To be symmetrical, it would have to be something I want. A laptop, for instance.
Her: You want an engagement laptop?
Me: That's just an example.
Her: That's not parallel. Computers depreciate; good jewelry doesn't.
Me: Good point. I guess there's no such thing as a ring upgrade.
Her: Actually, they make these things called "sleeves" which you buy for major anniversaries....
Me: Dude, I'm gettin' a Dell!