What do you do if everything on the bridal registry that you wanted to get has already been gotten?
On the heels of the wedding season comes "Stuff Every Husband Should Know" (Quirk Books, $9.95), a nifty pocket-sized hardcover book featuring everything a man embarking on a marriage should know (whether he wants to or not).
The little black book (not to be mistaken with the other little black book) is filled with priceless, practical wisdom garnered by husbands and fathers including its author Eric San Juan, who after a decade into marriage is delighted to find that his wife and son still seem healthy and happy.
The reasons being, covered in a variety of chapters throughout the book, ranging from the top ten basic rules of marriage to fun and inexpensive ways to spend time together after the courtship is over. There's even a chapter dealing with fatherhood.
Some of Juan's tips are likely gleaned from his own marriage, while others were learned over the years and handed down from generation to generation such as knowing the kids come first and if there are no kids, your wife comes first.
Juan also advises husbands to be kind, as a cruel word, once said, cannot be unsaid.
And while everyone knows honesty is the best policy, as Juan explains in his chapter, "Words to Forget You Ever Knew," taking that wisdom to unnecessary extremes has destroyed more marriages than strips clubs and World of Warcraft combined.
"If you want a long and loving relationship, you're going to have to accept that some things you just cannot say out loud," writes Juan, who is editor of a New Jersey-based newspaper. You can think it all you want as long as you remember not to share questions like, Have you put on weight? Or what did you do to your hair? What Juan does not say in this book (although likely to appear as fodder in the next volume), is that after a few years of marriage husbands (and wives) learn to say what they want in a better way. Instead of sharing the fact that his wife has packed on a few pounds, which she no doubt already knows, a loving husband would suggest taking the dog for a walk or a round of golf as a means of helping rather than hurting.
Its small size is another plus for husbands. They can stuff it in the back pocket of their jeans and use it as a reference guide when shopping for gifts after the wedding or quick tips during unusual situations.
If you're looking for something special to go along with the frying pan or the fuzzy purple throw for two, wrap up a copy of "Stuff Husbands Should Know." It's a handbook for life and a fun read. Considering the tips, it could also be presented to members of the groom's bridal party, even as a wedding anniversary gift.
TODAY'S MUSENever go to bed mad. Stay up and fight ~ Phyllis Diller, Phyllis Diller's Housekeeping Hints, 1966.