Jayne Cobb's Guide to a Happy Marriage

Author owns no rights to Firefly, and no copyright infringement is intended. Fanfic only.

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There's a few things I've learned since gittin' hitched. Just little things a man kinda picks up, 'long the way. They ain't all there is to bein' married writ here, 'course, on account'a I don't know it all. Unlike some folks who claim they do.

Anyway's, these here is just guidelines as might help a fella if'n he get's ta thinkin' on settin' up som'ers o'nother.

1) Don't get married.

2) If'n you feel like ya just hafta git hitched, then don't marry a crazy woman.

3) If ya's end up breakin' them first two, then make sure she ain't someone as can rip your lungs out, or knows 'bout twenty-nine ways ta kill ya. With a spoon.

4) Once you're hitched, that's it. Life pretty much turns kinda upwards on ya. Things that was okay to do before, like drinking and chasin' women, and doin' laundry once a month, them days is gone. Things that you wouldn'a ever done a'fore, like holdin' hands, and carryin' packages, and goin' ta the store to look at clothes, them's the new days. Might's well just get along. It ain't gonna change.

5) Take special care on what you agree and disagree with. It's 'portant to pay attention when the little woman's talkin'. Not cause you're interested, cause you most likely won't be. But 'cause a misstep durin' one o' them one sided conversations could be hurtful For you. For instance, if she says 'do I look fat?' the answer damn well better be along the lines o', 'I ain't noticed it'. Or, should she ask 'how do you like my new dress', it needs to be along the lines o' 'it looks good on you'. Sounds simple, right? Get'em confused, switch them answers around cause you ain't payin' no mind, and see how simple it is to haul your bedroll out to the couch fer a week or so.

6) Never raise a hand to ya wife. Man as'd beat his wife, ain't no man a'tall.

7) Don't never make the mistake o' sayin' 'whatever you want is fine with me,' no matter how bad you want her to be quiet. You'll regret it when you find all o' yer old clothes in the trash, and she's bought some go se lookin' core-boy clothes fer ya ta wear.

8) When she's talkin', don't act like ya bored, even if'n ya are. If ya get caught out, and hear 'are you even listening to me?', then try somethin' like, 'I am, but yer so much smarter'n me, I ain't gettin' it all,'. That's especially good if yer wife's a genius, like mine. Not so much, though, if she's a reader.

9) If yer wife's a reader, don't bother lyin'. Just makes it worse. If she catches ya lyin', don't lie 'bout lyin'. That's way worse. Remember the couch in rule 5.

10) Women don't always say what they mean. They send codes, like, and expect ya ta know, on instinct, what they mean. Such as, 'I have a headache'. She likely ain't really got no headache, just means she ain't in tha mood, if ya know what I mean. Don't know why they can't just say that. It don't hurt to run an get her a smoother though, on account o' she might actually have a headache, and expectin' you to know that she needs a smoother. Don't be stupid and ask her which it is, either. See Rule 5 for details about the couch.

11) Make sure when ya go and buy furniture, or make it if'n you're able, you get/make a real nice, comfortable couch. Expect ta see a good deal of it over the first five years or so that you're married. Sometimes it don't matter what ya do, it's gonna be wrong. Learn to recognize them times, and not to argue. Won't help, no way.

12) When she's cryin', suck it up, and hold her close till she gets done. If'n ya don't, you'll be cryin' later. Remember that couch?

13) When she's happy, you're happy. So it's in your best interest to make sure she's happy most all the time that's possible. When she ain't happy, you're miserable. Avoid confrontations durin' these kinda times, especially if you're in violation o' rule 3. This is very important when ya done broke rule 3.

14) Don't never say nothin' rude 'bout her family. Even if she says it. When she does, you just stay quiet. Don't ignore her, mind, on accounta rules 8 and 10. Never know when she's talkin' code, or when you'll slip up. When she corners ya 'bout whether you agree if her pansy ass brother is a hundan, remind her she's angry, and might want to make that decision once she's not upset no more. Do it careful like, so as not to distract her from bein' all mad at her prissy ge ge, suddenly be mad at you.

15) Women have mood swings. Funny how they don't seem ta have'em so much until after you're done hitched. Why that is, I don't know. Maybe it's bein' married. But learn to recognize them moods, if ya know what's good fer ya. You say something that works in this mood, when she's in that mood, and. . . .well, just make sure ya get a good couch, that's all.

16) Never, ever, refer to the little woman as fat when she's expectin'. It just ain't safe.

17) Don't ever refer ta ya wife as the little woman where she can hear ya. In fact, it's better if ya can just forget that phrase all together, case it was ta slip outta yer mouth by accident.

18) When your wife asks yer opinion on somethin', she ain't really interested in yer opinion. What she want's if fer ya ta agree with her opinion. If you ain't got a comfortable couch, it's best to do that.

19) Once in a while, give yer wife flowers fer no reason. Don't give her flowers and then tell her ya done did somethin' ya wasn't 'sposed ta be doin'. Waste o' money. And make sure ya don't give'er nothin' she's 'lergic to. Don't work out so well.

20) Finally, it's important in married life to make decisions, at least the important one's, together. Which means that she decides, and you agree with whatever she says. You'll see a lot less o' that couch that way.

Now, these here rules o' mine, they ain't set in stone, and you'll hafta adopt'em to your littl. . . .wife, accordin' to her moods and such not. The most important thing, though, when all is said and done;

Make sure that couch is comfortable.