Wednesday, March 14, 2007

One Half Is Better Than No Half At All

I just finished reading a Reuters story about a truly bitter divorce in Berlin, Germany that proved separate can be equal. As the divorce approached, the man sawed his house in half, loaded it onto a forklift and drove it away. I’m assuming here that it wasn’t much of a house to begin with if it could be cut completely in two so easily. If it wasn’t a modular before, it most certainly is now. I’m also assuming that without having the second half of the home that this man likes natural lighting and plenty of open windows, but maybe that’s just me. I was going to wonder aloud about why he thought it was appropriate to cut off and take his part of the house, but maybe after living in Berlin his whole life he found it perfectly normal to cut something right down the middle. After all, that’s how Berlin was from the 60s through 80s. Heck, after WWII, the city was actually split three ways! “Ich bin ein Divorcee,” I guess. Wasn’t it Abraham Lincoln who said, “A house cut in two will not stand?” Yeah you’re right, he didn’t…

I have never been divorced and God willing I never will, but doesn’t this man’s way of solving this thing seem so much cleaner? It’s perfect conflict resolution, I say. Each person takes half and that is that. It works so well that it’s been done on sitcoms for years, which of course as we all know is the measure of something’s validity. Isn’t that what Willis and Arnold did on ‘Different Strokes’ and the Bradys on ‘The Brady Brunch?’ Next time Lucy and Ethel argue about who gets to play with a piece of fake food or any other toy, I’m getting out the saw. Last time I saw it in the garage it was pretty rusty and dull so it might shred the heck out of it, but it’s better than buying a second toy or having to make a decision about who actually deserves to play with it or who had it first. Some aspects of parenting can be so taxing.

The only problem I foresee with this type of divorce settlement here in Southern California is the transportation of a half house (not a half way house, that is obviously different). I’m not sure you can get a permit to drive a forklift down a public road with a sawed off house hanging from the front of it. I guess any furniture or other family belongings located around the midway-cut point could be a tricky issue too. Can you sell half a recliner on E-bay? Did this particular couple have a pool, lawn furniture, BBQ, rusted old car or fire pit? Who got that stuff? Now that I think about it, the man who took half the house is probably losing out on the deal (aside from the obvious international embarrassment about what he did and certain prosecution or criminal charges). He only took half of a house while the soon to be ‘ex’ gets half a house and all of the property it was on, plus whatever was left behind on the land? Maybe “Ich bin ein oops,” is more like it!

I think I’m going to try this method of resolution out for the next week at work. Next time I hear two co-workers having an argument or disagreement, I am just going to barge in on them and solve it. If the problem concerns a report, I will rip it in half and walk away dramatically. If it is about who drank the office’s last soda, I am going to get a knife from the kitchen, cut it in two and leave while it drips everywhere. If they are fighting over a certain parking space, well guess what, I’m dividing it in two and if they can’t fit their cars into it, that’s what they get! I had better not catch anyone fighting over office space.

See, this solution should work pretty well across the board. Although I have to admit that I’m very glad the divorcing couple in Germany had no dogs, cats, kids or explosive devices.

12 comments:

Odat said...

I actually saw a house get cut in half and driven away...I don't know where it went or why it was done...oh well...like you said I hope they didn't have a lil dog or any kind of animals...

mist1 said...

Once upon a time, I eloped. Wait...let me cut this story short. Once upon a time, I got divorced. He got the cat. I felt like cutting him in half. I don't even have visitation.

Josie said...

Michael, where do you get this stuff!? It's too funny! I wonder which half of the house that is. I hope it contains the "important" rooms.

Lizza said...

What a crazy world this is, lol. I am fervently thankful that they didn't have kids too.

Dan said...

Yup, it could have been much worse. He could have sawed his wife in half.

Lee said...

I divorced, left him everything in exchange for my sanity. I still think I won.

you'dneverguess said...

This form of conflict resolution goes back for centuries. You may recall the story of Soloman cutting that baby in half. And then, of course, the drawing and quartering of early America. I know, that's quarters, whatever.

Tammie Jean said...

I bet he took the half that had his den or "man room" or whatever. He plopped it in the middle of a field, and he's sitting their on his recliner watching the game on his big screen TV while his buddies play pool and throw empties out the "big window".

thepinkangel said...

The problem in Southern California is that after you sawed the house in half you would have to figure out how to squeeze it out from it's almost puzzle piece like fit between all the neighbors. LOLOLOL!!

great post as always.

Natalie said...

I hope he took the half with the bathroom. That poor lady will have to poop outside like a dog. For some reason that makes me chuckle. I am a bad person.

thethinker said...

Well, if a divorcing couple had an even number of kids, they could just split them in half that way. But an odd number... well, let's just say that I hope my parents never decide to split up.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

We're on the same page. I also did a post about this couple and wondered if they had kids.

It's always amazing how peoples' minds work.