Monday, January 19, 2009

Dear Applicant

Suitor screening? I don't know what I imagined my parents doing. Applications? Background checks? Water torture? Hmm.....

[Phase I]
Dear Applicant 0146897QJD,
We have received your preliminary request to court our daughter. Thank you for sending your most recent photograph with its Certificate of Authenticity signed by your mother, as well as the 20-page essay describing what motivated you to begin this application process.

We would like to thank you for your interest in our pride and joy. While some steps of this application process may seem inconvenient, you of course understand our caution in entrusting our sweet young thing to just anyone who happens to have a Y chromosome. Even from a purely materialistic point of view (cost of childbirth; cost of clothing, housing, and food; cost of dentistry and healthcare; cost of education, etc.), you must understand the type of financial investment we have here. Besides that, we love our daughter, and we want her to be happy.

Because of this, we cannot allow you to monopolize even a minute of our daughter's valuable time without a few preliminaries and precautions.

Please complete the enclosed forms, and return them to the address on this packet within 10 days. If we do not hear from you within 10 days, we will assume that you are no longer interested. Additionally, please study the reference materials, and be prepared to be tested over them, should you proceed past Phase I of the screening process.

Marvin and Jenny Schnauver

Forms to be completed
Personal Testimony
Detailing your conversion, and beliefs.
Scripture Memorized
Be prepared to recite this at any time.
Scriptural Study Method
Outline your daily routine for Bible study.
Personal Ministry
Detail the ministries you have been personally involved in through the investment of time or money in the past twelve months.
Brief Personal Account
Describe your life in 20 pages.
Outline of Friends
List the friend's name, length of friendship, method of meeting, and current pursuits.
100 Favorite Books Read Last Year
Three-sentence summaries of those one hundred books you most enjoyed reading last year.
Favorite Movies Watched Last Year
Same as above, except there is no stipulation at the number of movies you watched.
Academic History
Courses, GPA, and degrees earned from middle school to the present day.
Acquired Life Skills
Itemized list of tasks you are proficient at. Please be as comprehensive and detailed as possible. For example, list tasks as far-ranging as "pinning butterflies" to "open-heart surgery."
Automobile, Sink, and Lightbulb Diagrams
Detailed diagram of automobile, kitchen sink, and lightbulb, including as much detail as you can summon from memory.
Toolbox Contents
Describe the contents of your toolbox.
Publication History
Itemized list of all Letters-to-the-Editor, journal articles, book chapters, and monographs you have written.
Background Check
The results of a background check from your state of residency.
Credit Report
Showing your financial history at the present date.
Bank Statements
Bank statements from each bank you have used.
Monthly Budgets
Include your budgets from the last 12-month period.
Current Resume
Showing your places of employment from middle school through the present day.
Medical History
Results from a physical performed within this month. Include a full description of all allergies and current medications.
Traffic History
List of all traffic violations during your time as a driver.
Top 50 Role Models
List of those fifty people that have most influenced your life, and why.
List of those hobbies you find most enjoyable. Enclose photographs whenever possible.
Typical Daily Regimen
Outline your typical 24-hour period, listing physical workout, time at work, time doing hobbies, etc.
Perfect Day
Outline what would be your ideal 24-hour period.
Favorite Games and Time Log
List of those video or board games which you enjoy most, along with an estimate of how long you spent playing them during the last twelve months.
Favorite Jokes to Tell
Italicize all punchlines and phrases to be especially emphasized.
Biggest Strengths
Spiritual, or physical.
Biggest Weaknesses
Be honest.
Favorite Historical Epoch
Fully justify your selection.
Previous Romantic Involvements
From elementary school to the present day.
Survey of Family Tree
Include the photos/names/ages and brief descriptions of all those in your immediate family as well as all first-cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents. Include any interesting quirks, hobbies, and/or pastimes. Also include a brief medical history.
Cooking Abilities and Preferences
Include favorite recipes, cooking experience, and cooking preferences.
History of Plant Ownership
List the species and genus of each plant you have cultivated or killed, and why.
History of Pet Ownership
List the name, species, and genus of each pet you have owned. Indicate whether each animal was solely or jointly owned. If jointly owned, detail who performed which animal-related chores (nail clipping, litter cleaning, fang cleaning, etc.).
Music Preferences
Describe your favorite music genres, groups, and songs.
Alcohol, Gambling, Smoking, Dancing, and Card-Playing
Describe your view of these activities, and what, if any, guidelines should be imposed on them.
View of Marriage
Describe your view of marriage, God's view of marriage as revealed in the Scriptures, and whether your views and God's coincide.
View of Divorce
Describe your view of divorce, God's view of divorce, and upon what grounds you would consider divorce.
Vision & Worldview
Your vision for the duration of your life. Detail the level of involvement you wish to maintain in your family, work, ministry in current issues (abortion, euthanasia, homosexual agenda, etc.), and the specific goals you have in each area of your life and your justifications for having them. Describe your worldview as it relates to the ten (10) areas outlined by David Noebel, and which classification it most resembles: Marxism-Leninism, Secular Humanism, Cosmic Humanism, or Biblical Christianity.
Character Witnesses
Include the phone numbers/email addresses of no less than ten (10) character witnesses.

For your reference (be prepared to be tested over these materials).
The Way Things Work
Evidence that Demands a Verdict
Escape from Reason
The God Who is There
Band of Brothers
A Patriot's History of the U.S.
Far Side (selected comic books)

[Phase II]
If the paperwork perusal, battery of tests, and intensive one-on-one interview go successfully, within 3 years, it's time for the stepup to "Personal, Screened Calls."

"Suitor Screening Service. This is Jenny speaking. How may I direct your call?"
"Uh, I just wanted to talk..."
"Let me transfer you to our automated voice messaging system."
[Electronic beeps, and a delay of 45 seconds.]
"You've reached the Suitor Verification System. Please speak your ten-digit identification number and reason for calling after the beep. *BEEP*"
"Uh.... 0146897QJD. I wanted to talk to Stephanie and see if she'd, uh, befreeon Wednesdaynight. Uh, that's it. Um. Call me?"

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