The Swedish Countess, the CEO and their "extreme differences" that ended in divorce

March 23, 2009: Be ye evenly yoked…. When modern day people try to interpret the Biblical statement “be ye evenly yoked”, they start getting “racial” and make pronouncements that it means that “White people should marry White people and Black people should marry Black people…”
That is certainly an easy interpretation.  But I am starting to think that it was the very last thing that was on the mind of the Biblical character who made the statement.  Because, simply, those Biblical folks did not have race problems as we understand that issue today. They were all of the same “race.”  Back in those days, people were more into religious persuasion –Jews vs. Gentiles–for example, and not the fact that someone is African in origin vs. Scandinavian our South American….cause, I don’t know about you, but I have never even seen many, if any, reference in the Bible to other societies in Latin America, Europe and even Africa. All I see are Middle Eastern people who wanted to make sure that they maintained religious and cultural “purity.”
Ok. Fast forward to 2009. UTC Chairman George David and Swedish Countess Marie Douglas David are getting divorced as I have blogged, ad nauseum. And I was just reading in an article by Dave Collins of the Associated Press that was published in the Chicago Tribune about their divorce proceedings which are still going on in Hartford Connecticut.
And according to the article, Mr. David was questioned about some rather extravagant trips he had taken his wife on, even though he had filed for divorce (back in 2004) and while the actions were still pending in the courts. It seems Mr. David was spending like crazy, trying to make Marie happy. Says the Tribune:

David acknowledged Friday that the most lavish trip was a $200,000 yacht cruise along the coast of Italy in the Mediterranean, complete with $9,000 worth of caviar for the couple and some guests. “It was an extravagant trip,” David said, adding that the experience was a “privilege.” David said he and his wife at the time “were still trying to work out our extreme differences.” Emphasis added.

And, of course, being the person I am, after I read that, it got me fixated on the last part of David’s comment. The “extreme differences” part. And I thought, “hme…is that what the Bible meant by “be ye evenly yoked?”
To my way of thinking, being evenly yoked has everything to do with COMPATIBILITY and almost nothing to do with skin color. As I mature, that is what I am starting to think. I mean, to the extent that one spouse’s skin color matters (even on a subliminal basis) to the other spouse, then, yes, there can be issues of uneven yoking there. But more important than the external skin, I think, is mindset, values, personality, experiences, likes, dislikes, humor, education, financial status, goals, BELIEFS, politics, age, and sexual energies, even religion cause let’s face it: More people have been murdered or been prosecuted over religion beliefs than race the world over. So I think religious difference is way up there as far as being “evenly yoked.” It just is one of the most volatile issues mankind has had to come to grips with. I mean, maybe the Davids were not even religious, so I am not saying that religion was one of their issues. But they were clearly “unevenly yoked”, and their race had absolutely nothing to do with it cause they were both White.
Listen, again, to what Mr. David said: He said, “We were still trying to work out our extreme differences.” That is a very heavy statement, folks. And you want to know the biggest irony?  George and Marie were probably more unevenly yoked than if either one of them had married someone from a totally different ethnic or racial group!
One way in which I think they were definitely unevenly yoked is age. I don’t want to sound like I am an “ageist” because I am not. But I think it does matter that a couple is as close to the same age as possible if we are talking about a successful marriage. This creates more balance in a marital union. I think that the closer a couple is in age, the more likely they will be able to keep up with each other and to understand each other’s humor, politics and even their sexual wants and desires. This does matter, I think. A couple with a 30 year age difference is simply not going to possess the same energy levels. I don’t care what pill or aid they are taking.  Somebody is going to have trouble keeping up and it’s more likely to be the older person.
Plus, there was the whole issue of the country vs. city thingy. Marie apparently wanted to live in the City and George, having had his fill of the city, was more than happy to veg in Avon Connecticut. I mean, a lot of young people are quite happy living in Connecticut. But I would venture to say that if Marie had been older, even late 40’s, she might have been more amenable to that lifestyle than she is right now. Again, uneven yoking.
Marie complained that she wanted “more sex with her husband.” And she was cheating two years into the marriage. And according to the same article I referenced above, lawyers for the countess kept asking her husband if they had had sex during the vacations and he answered:  “I don’t have recollections of sex,” David said. “I just don’t make mental records of it.” I bet you if you ask Marie she can pin point the last time down to the minute, and certainly whether or not they bonked on the coast of Italy in that $200k cruise. (Vladimir Putin said this about the “down to the minute” and it cracked me up and I just had to use it, couldn’t resist 🙂
But. So. If I were a marriage counselor, right?  I would want to know about George and Marie’s likes and dislikes; their politics; humor, energy levels; desire for children; etc. In addition to other information like what were their expectations going into this marriage and the motivation for this marriage. Because, obviously, there was a lot of uneven yoking here. And while age factors in heavily (and race doesn’t factor in at all), it probably goes even beyond just their ages. 
But you have to wonder if during the dating process if these differences did not come to light? I mean, before you marry someone don’t you figure out whether you are compatible or not? Whether you are the “same” in enough ways? Whether there aren’t “extreme difference” which would serve to make marriage unworkable? I don’t get it. It’s not as if this is George’s first marriage. He was married before and has grown kids. And he is clearly a very intellectually savvy and agile man. He should know better than to marry a woman 30 years his junior with whom he had “extreme differences.” A marriage that is described as such was void ab initio as far as I am concerned. No amount of extravagant caviar induced trips on any coast can undo what is not doable from the get go. Don’t you agree?
More on Marie’s divorce here: