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Getting kicked off the cloud

OK fellas, how many of you have been asked this question from your spouse.

“If I were to die before you, would you remarry?”

It’s an impossible and loaded question that must be answered with careful and loving grace. If not, be prepared to remarry sooner than anticipated.

Consider these answers:

1. I could never remarry. You are the only woman in my life and no one could ever take your place.

2. I’ll just go on living a lonely existence all by myself, and meet you on our puffy white cloud in the great hereafter in a couple of weeks.

3. I would need time to recover from my deep grief, say five or 10 years, before ever thinking about chasing another woman.

4. There’s Miss Nellie, just around the corner, who lost her husband several years ago. At 79, living in that big expensive house by herself, driving those big fancy cars, I am sure she would like a companion to help wile away those long desperate lonely hours. No romance intended.

Well, I am sure there are plenty more appropriate answers.

Psychologists tell us that marriage is good for our mental and physical health particularly in our senior years. Married or remarried seniors live longer and more happier lives, they say. No one should be alone, they tell us.

We all need a partner, no matter what age. Knowing that, if you get the big question from your spouse, you can always quote the medical people.

“Well dear, if you want me to remain here for years and years, watching our children grow into senior status, attend high school and college graduations of our grandchildren, well then, to find another woman certainly makes sense.”

Channel surfing one night, I landed on a program by Louisiana preacher Jesse Deplantis.

The preacher was telling a personal story, which had his audience in stitches. In true Louisiana story-telling fashion, Deplantis extolled the exploits of his 84-year-old father, now enjoying his third marriage after the deaths of two previous spouses. Jesse’s mother died in 1983, and six weeks later, daddy had a new bride. The marriage lasted 24 years. A few weeks after the death of wife No. 2, daddy calls Jessie and says, “Hey Jessie. Guess what? I just got married.”

Jessie responds, “Daddy. How old is this woman?”

“Sixty-five” he answers.

Jessie, 59, calls his older brother, Wayne, 62.

“Wayne. Did you know daddy just got married?.

“Yeah,” Wayne answers, “and I wouldn’t have minded dating her myself.”

To which Jessie’s wife says, “Jessie, don’t you want to go meet your new mama?”

The new 65-year-old-bride gushes with enthusiasm about her new 84-year-old husband.

“Oh, I just met your daddy, and I knew I had to take care of him,” she tells Jessie.

To which daddy replies, “I’m a happy man!”

Jessie says that when his daddy climbs the great staircase in the sky and lands on his cloud, and is confronted by his mama, she is going to ask his daddy, “Who were those women?”

And he’s going to answer, “what women,” and he’s going to lie, and his mama is going kick him off their cloud.

So it comes to this—how are you going to answer the loaded question?

Would daddy have been “a happy man,” living a lonely existence by himself?

Would he have lived to see his 84th birthday? Who knows.

I have decided that should I survive my spouse, I am going to take a chapter from the recent escapades of Tiger Woods, head for Las Vegas, and chase cocktail waitresses.

If you want to be a single happy man in your senior years, it’s not the finish line that’s counts, it’s who you chase, and accepting the risk of being kicked off your cloud.