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Happy Anniversary! Now, Send in the Clones
by Andy Cowan
TheSyndicatedNews columnist

Andy Cowan, an award-winning writer, whose credits include Cheers and Seinfeld, regularly contributes humor pieces to the Los Angeles Times and the CBS Jack FM Radio Network.

IN this day of twice-and thrice-married candidates and miscellaneous marital mayhem, maybe it's time to address the elephant in the room that isn't solely Republican or Democrat. We need marriage reform. Yes, to improve the health of this institution, it's time for a little matrimonial insurance -- maybe then the burgeoning population of single lifers like me will feel less trepidation about taking the plunge.

To the drawing board . . .

During the blood test, DNA would be extracted from both parties and rushed into the hands of a geneticist, who would proceed to clone the participants. During the wedding ceremony, "till death do you part" would be replaced with "till death or clone-swapping do you part." More on this later.

During the honeymoon, all picture-postcard destinations would be strictly off-limits. Couples who look the least bit lovey-dovey would be allowed to visit only towns mired in misery. Honeymoon suites would feature the most oppressive accommodations -- no heart-shaped objects allowed, unless they resemble the working-organ kind. And each suite would be within earshot of street repair and high-powered drills that render the couple unable to hear each other unless they constantly shout at the top of their lungs. After an angst-ridden week or two of yelling and feeling anything but romantic, the rest of the couple's life together would feel like a cakewalk. No longer would they begin a marriage with an act they can't possibly follow. The honeymoon's over? Thank God.

Our "marriage-insured" couple would have 18 years in which to try to keep their union alive. During this time, society's growing inability to commit to just one choice, be it a person or an iTune, would dictate a new fashion trend that makes the challenge of staying together easier: a different hair color for every day of the week. Alternating your shampoos would be more crucial than ever. Monday's might be laced with auburn dye. Tuesday's: honey blond. The net effect of feeling married to seven different partners would be like polygamy without the guilt. A "hairem," if you will.

Throughout this 18-year trial run, the couple's clones would be raised by foster parents, per the life lessons learned by the original couple. If the wife discovered that the husband was a poor listener or didn't like to share his feelings, she'd instruct the foster parent to discourage any signs of such behavior in the formative stages of the husband's clone, when there was still time to correct it. Should the husband discover that the wife has a tendency to nag, he'd forewarn the foster parent to withhold her clone's allowance if and when she whines about not having enough toys.

BY the 18th year of marriage, the original couple would be left with two options: (1) They remain together. Upon this milestone, they would be allowed to withdraw half of their IRA money tax-free for plastic surgery. (IRA stands for "I'm really aging.") (2) Both are free to marry younger, sexier, improved versions of their spouses and remember all over again why they were originally attracted. Send in the clones!

"How can you leave me for another woman?" "Don't be silly, dear. I'm leaving you for you."

True, she may be awfully young. But clones reportedly age faster, so she'd also be uncommonly mature. Would complications ensue if the original couple has kids? Not necessarily. Relating with parent clones that are the same chronological age would help bridge the generation gap once and for all. And what happens to the original couple in another 18 years? Send in the clone clones!

ANDY COWAN's credits include "Cheers" and "Seinfeld". He can be reached at -

Published: Jul 11,2008 18:24
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