Make Your Leap List Before You Get Married or Have a Baby
Because evidently you’re going to be leaping off the face of the earth. At least, that’s what Honda would have you think. Their latest Leap List campaign has me a little puzzled. If you haven’t seen the commercials, the basic premise is that you should create a list of things you “wanna do before everything you oughta do” (their sad corporate attempt at casual language, not mine). The implication being “you better do it now, cause no way in hell are you doing it after [insert life event] happens.”
I’m ashamed to admit that I had two opposing reactions to this campaign, based on the featured life event:
This one offended me a little. Here’s the scene:
- Guy lamely asks girl to marry him in the street. (No ring, no bended knee – is chivalry dead?)
- Girl says something like “Married?” [Cut away to sad, wistful look] “But there were so many things I was gonna do first. Hike the Appalachian Trail, learn to play the drums, finish my short film…”
I wanted to grab that bimbo, shake her by the shoulders and say, “No wait, getting married’s cool, and not just because of all the expensive cutlery you’ll get as gifts!” I didn’t, because if I had tried, I would have irreparably damaged our flat screen TV, which Drew loves more than me, more than Mr. Cecil’s ribs even.
This one inspired a different reaction:
- Girl springs on unsuspecting guy, “I think I want to have a baby” while out shopping in a busy street. (Good tactic, husband cannot throw public tantrum.)
- Guy looks appropriately crestfallen and says something along the lines of “But I was gonna see the Northern Lights in Alaska, go spelunking with the guys, and build that fighting robot…” (Is it even possible to get down to the baby-making process with this man and his sad hobbies?)
Now of course, I wasn’t offended by this (I too, would panic about when I’m going to get my spelunking in.). But old “meskobe,” disgruntled YouTube viewer, sure was. If you didn’t already click on the video link and see the comment she’d posted, here’s what she had to say:
Whoever came up with this new ad campaign is my least favorite person in the world. I hate the insinuation that getting married or having a baby will immediately end all ability to have fun or do anything. Marriage & children are two of the greatest adventures in life! Why not do all these “leap list” things WITH your spouse and kid(s)??!!
I cackled and did a little “Yeah, right! You can’t do ANYTHING with kids!” and then had the sobering…
Ohhhhhh. Wait a sec…
If I’m sitting here thinking they’ve got it wrong about marriage, isn’t it possible they’ve (and I’VE?) got it wrong about kids too? I don’t think the Honda marketing people are (necessarily) idiots, and the idea for these commercials didn’t just get plucked out of thin air. People – obviously lots of people – really do feel this way. But I’m not one of them when it comes to the sentiments about marriage. There’s nothing I feel I can’t do because I’m married. If anything, it’s made me want to do MORE crazy things and now I have someone to do them with (and be my designated driver).
Is it possible I would feel the same way on the kids issue if I had a couple of my own? Maybe. But…
Kids Are (Way) More Work Than Spouses
And there ARE some facts that simply can’t be ignored:
- It WILL be outrageously expensive to take children on a trip to Europe, whereas it will just be embarrassing to take your husband, who will demand to be taken to a Parisian McDonald’s for a Croque McDo. (Oh yes, it’s real. Oh yes, Drew ordered it.)
- Infants WILL likely bounce right out of that white water raft, whereas husbands only cling tightly to your life vest and scream like ladies.
- Unless you’re Amber Miller, running a marathon while 39 weeks pregnant WILL be rather withering, whereas your husband is likely to hand you refreshing beverages as you run past, like straight vodka disguised as water.
Perhaps the biggest difference of all is that you can easily leave the husband at home for these adventures if necessary, attended by little more than a bag of Zesty Ranch Doritos. But kids require significantly more expensive babysitters.
I don’t know why these commercials have consumed me the past couple of weeks. Maybe it’s that my Leap List before having a baby would take me all the way through menopause to complete. Or maybe it’s because it just seems silly – everyone I know who has had children says that you’ll never truly feel ready and you should just jump in. That used to sound brave. Now I’m wondering if these are just lazy people who wanted an excuse to skip out on their Leap List. [smiley face]
Should I write my own stupid Leap List? And then if I can’t get through it while still in my child-bearing years, I have my answer? Probably not a good idea. I’d probably just load it up with ridiculous things like Co-Star in a Country Western Musical with Elijah Wood & Soleil Moon Frye.
Nevermind, that’s the best idea I’ve had all week.