何毓琦的个人博客分享 http://blog.sciencenet.cn/u/何毓琦 哈佛(1961-2001) 清华(2001-date)

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To my wife of 59 years on Mothers day

已有 731 次阅读 2018-5-14 00:07 |个人分类:生活点滴|系统分类:海外观察

 

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About intelligence Compatibility in Marriage

Recently there was some discussion about desirable quality in a wife (from  the male viewpoint) in these pages

http://blog.sciencenet.cn/home.php?mod=space&do=blog&view=com&order=mycom and http://blog.sciencenet.cn/home.php?mod=space&uid=203132&do=blog&id=1111128

and one reader and I agree on the title of this blog vs. the old Chinese saying “No talent in women is a virtue 女子無才便是徳”. Having been married for 59 years and have seen marriage success as well as failure among our friends, I can speak from experience that besides “LOVE”, intelligence compatibility is a crucial component of a successful long term marriage.

It was the year 1958, my wife and I were on a big date with others in NYC. Someone in our party put forth the following puzzle “You and your opponent have a square table and unlimited supply of pennies on the side. You each take turns placing a penny anywhere on the table. The winner is the last person who can successfully placing the last penny on the table without overlapping another. Do you want to go first or second?”. Various members of our party (most males are scientists or engineers) starts to come up with elaborate algorithms and solutions without success. But my future wife, a biology major totally no good at mathematics, came up with the brilliant observation that on a square table there is only one point which has no symmetrically equivalent point. Hence to be a winner she would choose to go first and occupy that point. Sure, I was smitten by her charm and beauty. But her solution really impressed me. Of course you can say that she may have heard of the puzzle before and simply expressed the essence of the solution succinctly. Our subsequent life together absolutely convince me that this was no accident. She is my intelligence equal even though she has trouble figuring percentages. Along some intelligence dimensions she is definitely even superior to me. Believe me one can get use to “beauty” and take “charm” for granted; but there is nothing more frustrating if you and you partner cannot communicate at the same intellectual level. Your joint living is so much more harmonious and satisfying since it is 同床同萝 (same bed, same dream) and心灵相通 ( hearts and minds together).We often blurt out the same sentence simultaneously or finish each others sentences or tasks without prompting. We each take care efficiently of separate domains of family living whether it is finance, social interaction, or donation/volunteering. I totally believe this compatibility contributed to our happy marriage of 59 years. Young men and women starting out take notice of this in selecting your life long partner.




http://blog.sciencenet.cn/blog-1565-1113839.html

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