THIS BLOG IS MY BLOG. THIS BLOG IS MY BLOG. Welcome to the Home of Hyperopia.: On Currencies, Marital - Part 1

Saturday, June 24, 2006

On Currencies, Marital - Part 1

The key facts you need to know to appreciate this entry:

  • I like to gamble (for small stakes). I like to wager (about small things). I'm a (two-bit) gambler. I'm a (non-degenerate) wagerer.
  • I am the sole breadwinner in our family. We are enormously blessed, and my wife wants to and is able to be a stay-at-home for our children.
  • Before we had kids, my wife worked.
  • I like to make bets with my wife. Frequent bets. Amusing wagers.

So back when she was employed and earning cash compensation for her toiling, we could gamble and in theory I had an opportunity to win money from her if I chose the right side of our bets (which occurred too infrequently). But she hasn't been employed for a little over four years now. She hasn't been earning cash compensation for her toiling (motherhood) over the past four years. No, instead of money she has been earning my undying affection and gratitude.

But you can't buy trinkets and baubles with affection and gratitude.

And I can't "win" back my affection and gratitude from bets.

So I've been struggling now for these several years (four counts as several, doesn't it?) to identify meaningful stakes for our bets (which we have continued to make). Prior to today we had continued to wager for money, but that just doesn't make sense. My wife, bless her heart, appreciated altogether too completely that she didn't really have anything to lose if we were making bets for money during this period where I am the sole breadwinner. So she wasn't properly motivated to evaluate my propositions. She wasn't adequately incentivized to push the terms of the wager into that wonderful middle ground where each wagerer genuinely believes they've got the best side of the bet. In other words, she just didn't care enough to make it fun. She was playing with the house's money, and she knew it.

But today I figured it out. Instead of wagering for money, the currency of our wagers needed to be we needed to be that most precious of commodities, the currency of our wagers needed to be the only resource that is equally available (and scarce) to all persons: time.

And today we were going to get the oil changed in her minivan. (She drives a 1999 Dodge Grand Caravan "Sport" model; it has a spoiler. Seriously.) We went to Subway for lunch on the way to the oil change place. I was confident the four of us could remain in the car and eat our sandwiches while the mechanics changed our oil. My wife was not. She thought we would have to get out of the car and go into the little waiting room while they worked on the car.

We bet one thirty-minute "vacation." If I won, my wife would take the kids out of the house sometime for thirty minutes so I could do whatever it is I would do if I was not working and was in the house by myself. If she won, I would do the same for her. (Notice that in a sense, winning this bet is losing something of significant importance to me -- thirty minutes with the tots. As hectic as my schedule has been lately, those thirty minutes with the kids are seriously precious to me. But you can't have everything, where would you put it? (Steven Wright))

I won the bet.

Sometime soon I get thirty minutes of solitude in our house. When I can play the piano as loud as I want.

So check back for a video of me singing and playing my heart out. To a famous Journey song.

It's going to be spectacularly embarrassing.

I can't wait.

Photo Credits: here.


Blogger NYC TAXI SHOTS said...


8:03 PM, June 24, 2006  
Blogger The Velvet Fog said...

You guys sat in the car, on a lift and ate sandwiches while they changed your oil?

Only you.

7:45 AM, June 26, 2006  
Blogger garrett said...

That's correct.

We were listening to Laurie Berkner.

11:26 AM, June 26, 2006  
Blogger Emini Day Trader said...

Interesting blog. I can see that you've done a lot of work on it.

Emini Futures Day Trader
day trading course

8:42 AM, September 18, 2006  

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