I am reading an intriguing book titled Dematerializing: Taming the Power of Possessions by Jane Hammerslough and it poses a question that got me to thinking: “Does buying an expensive crib mean you love your baby more?” And it is not being asked in the vernacular slang of today. The answer is, of course not. All of which reminds me of wedding rings…
An age-old debate centers around how much is appropriate to spend on wedding rings, specifically engagement rings. For the record, I spent my first paycheck (hundreds not thousands) on my wife’s rings, which is far less than typical, and yet we soon celebrate our 29th anniversary, which is far more than typical. So I firmly believe that cost does not equal commitment.
And to add controversy to this tale, I recently quit wearing my wedding ring! No, Linda and I are not separating. Nor do I love her any less as a consequence. Interestingly, no one has even appeared to notice, or at least no one has said anything. I never thought I’d not wear my ring but I suffered a nasty injury to my ring finger that has made me think twice about continuing to wear it.
I’d like to think that others are able to sense my matrimonial bliss, with or without my ring, or maybe I am simply past my prime and thus not on anyone’s list of prospects. Either way, I am very happily married and thus not interested in anyone else’s advances. All of which brings me full circle to the issue of symbol versus substance. I think we all know people who wear the symbol of a ring but act with lackluster love or even betrayal.
And speaking of dematerializing, I have heard of married minimalists (namely females) who have gone so far as to sell their wedding rings and donate the proceeds to charity! Now, that seems a bit overboard to me, but I guess that is one’s prerogative. What I am trying to get at here is that the value of a symbol lies in its reflection of reality, not in its perceived value as reflected by purchase price. I think that has the ring of truth to it.