The following is a preliminary report on our ongoing 19½ -year plus research project to study the interaction of two people who are always right, yet never agree.

The study began on June 6, 1986, when study participants Julie Wilcox and Chr’s Phelps signed a binding lifetime contract indicating their consent to participate in a never before attempted marriage of two people, who are always right, yet never agree. The study had previously been tested on laboratory grown earthworms and standard tree frogs, with disastrous results in which one party ate the other in a fit of temper, but the here-to-for-now named Phelps party insisted it could be successfully attempted with humans.

With only limited experience, and no corporate funding, the Phelps study was allowed to progress. Due to rising postal costs, years 1-18 of the study will not be published. The following is an accounting of the previous 12 months of the two married people who are always right, yet never agree, now joined by three low paid, non-voluntary research assistants, their daughters: Hannah age 12, and Elizabeth and Shannon aged 11.

The Wall: The wall began as a necessity for the yard, not a decision. When separate color and style choices are decided upon by the study participants, we see a classic example of two rights, and no wrongs. As both color choices were perfectly suitable, each staunchly declares their choice to be correct, and the builder is left to make the choice on his own as the study participants ran off to Washington D.C. leaving Grandpa in charge. The wall was built in a color that no one now remembers the name of. In another example of separatist thinking, although Chr’s and Julie did stay in the same hotel in DC, they arrived there following their own agendas. (In an interesting side note: While there, the participants visited the International Spy Museum where they were encouraged to take on new identities for the duration of their visit, and to not reveal their true identities even under torture. We were pleased to see that Antonio Silva and Caroline Chang survived the experience intact.)

The Steps: The wall needed steps. Julie rightly declared that she was not going to build concrete steps. Chr’s declared that it would be a snap to build concrete steps. Hence, Chr’s irritated Julie by building 12 steps, one at a time, separating each by days and even weeks. Julie irritated Chr’s by adding an interesting assortment of coins imbedded in the steps as she wanted to add the value that she would have paid someone to do the job. Again, we see the two rights, no wrongs, and ultimately the steps were completed to each’s satisfaction.

The Vehicles: A standoff has occurred over the make and models of vehicles that will grace the driveway of the research headquarters. Julie and the driveway prefer something with monster truck tires and 10 wheel drive. Chr’s and the girls prefer something that in 5 years, Hannah can commandeer to drive to school. At the present time, all vehicles remain the same as those used in years 16-18.

The children: As well as living as pseudo subjects in this project, the girls have been solicited for research projects more aptly suited toward them. Hannah helps Dartmouth University study the effects of media on teenagers in long winded phone calls where they ask about every movie made since the last phone call, whether you’ve seen it or not, and what kind of cereal you eat for breakfast. Elizabeth and Shannon participated in the University of Minnesota Twins Study, where it was determined that they are indeed twins, though they are 93% opposite. All the children will remain involved in their projects in that hope that some sense can be made of the makeup of minds and their thought process, and its’ concurrent effects on behavior. They hope to use this information to prove the insanity of their parental units when they truly hit their teenage years. Their opinions can be obtained for other projects pending adequate compensation.

International Review: An 11 year old Irish exchange student was selected for inclusion in the Phelps household this summer. It is know that she, Naomi Robinson, had quite a taste of life here and was often confused not only by the facts incurred in living in a household where the adults are always right, yet never agree, but by the strange language barriers. Han/Shan/Liz were her constant companions, and quickly learned to translate ‘post’ into mail, ‘crisps’ into chips, and ‘ring’ into phone. For all who met Naomi during her stay, she is doing well and in school after the death of her grandfather to cancer shortly after her return to Ireland.

Funding and Headquarters: Local funding sources and headquarters remain the same as year 18 of the study, as do contact email addresses, although a rift about paint color has caused one wall at the main headquarters to remain drywall, another wall to grow drywall, and one tree lies on the ground after a harrowing experience felling it with friends. Julie, opposed to the tree from the moment she saw it, agreed with the felling of said tree, but not with the time taken to remove said tree, nor with Chr’s’ apparent fascination in climbing trees to get rid of them. Of course, she is indeed correct in her thinking, and was quoted as stating that if he did fall out of said tree with a chainsaw in his hand, she would be posting a For Sale sign before attending his funeral.

Project continuation: It is expected that the main study participants will again be
re-signed for another year as of June 6, making this one of the strangest, but longest lasting marriages of the 21st century, far eclipsing ‘Brad and Jen’ or the soon to be expected demise of ‘Brittney and Kevin.’ No further permanent research assistants are expected, although temporary scientists are welcome at any time.

Validity and Reliability: These are all true-to-life occurrences in the study of two people who are always right, yet never agree. While it is well known that there are outside influences on the lives of the study participants, it has been established that they are indeed committed to the process, and are expected to flourish in the coming years, as are their daughters who will soon be living with a moat and armed drawbridge if suitable body guards can not be found by their father. What effect are the participants having on their external world? Time will tell, and while we are waiting impatiently for that impact – Julie wishes you Peace. Chr’s wishes you Joy. Merry Christmas!

Please remember that these are preliminary results and were derived in a controlled setting. We suggest that you not try to duplicate all parts of this study at home.

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