It’s one of those things my dad said that I’ll never forget: “That, boys, is the kind of woman you should marry.”
My Dad’s Life Lesson About Marriage
My dad isn’t the kind of guy who sits his sons down and says, “I’m going to share with you a life lesson, so be sure to pay attention.” But, from time to time over the years, he would say something about life in an offhand way,and because it didn’t happen very often and never seemed forced or planned, I’d remember what he said. This is what he had to say about marriage.
The Run on the Savings and Loan
We were watching It’s a Wonderful Life; I was probably in my early twenties and home for Christmas. In the movie, George Bailey wants to travel and see the world, and he and his new bride Mary have scraped and saved to make it possible. It’s their wedding day, and George and Mary are about to leave Bedford Falls for their honeymoon when George gets word that there has been a run on the bank his family owns, Bailey Bros. Building and Loan. (It’s during the Great Depression.) Banks are closing right and left, but if the Savings and Loan closes it will be a social disaster, because Bailey Bros. Building and Loan is the only bank in town not run by greedy Mr. Potter. Mr. Potter wants to keep the poor and the immigrants in debt; Bailey Building and Loan offers the poor and the immigrant a way out of poverty and into home ownership. If the old Building and Loan goes under, Bedford Falls will be a worse place to live
Here’s the Scene
Watch the whole 6:44 clip–it’s worth it.
“That’s the Kind of Woman You Should Marry”
Mary Bailey spontaneously offers their honeymoon funds for the purposes of keeping the Savings and Loan open. She displays a beautiful, simple, great-hearted generosity.
After that scene, my dad said to us, in an off-hand way, “Boys, that’s the kind of woman you should marry.”
And I did.