Last night, Earl and I caught that new show on HBO, “Big Love”. It’s a drama that basically follows a non-traditional family, a husband (Bill Paxton) and his three (yes I said “three”) wives and children that live in a suburban Utah town. The husband owns a chain of hardware stores and is juggling the stress of his job, his family, his ailing father and paranoid mother and his business “financers”.

The show didn’t really grip me but I found the premise interesting. For the first time in a long while, there was something different on the television screen. I don’t think there’s been a television series with polygomy as the backdrop before. I didn’t find myself engaged by the show though.

While we were watching the program I kept asking Earl, “Are there really groups living in compounds like that in Utah?” and “Do people really live like that?”, as if he’s the expert on social habits in Utah. I’ve been fortunate enough to see many, many different living arrangements in my life but I’ve never been to a compound where all the women were married to one man. That’s a new one for me. Discussing the show with my co-worker today I was surprised that such a compound exists not too far from here. She mentioned that it’s populated by a “three old women” now and they give tours of the place. In fact, one of her college classes went there on a field trip.

I believe that love is love is love is love is love and that it takes many shapes and forms and works in an infinite number of ways. As I’ve grown older, I’ve found that what works for couple (or group) “A” doesn’t necessarily work for others. I’ve seen couples with multiple sex partners. I’ve seen couples that wouldn’t allow each other the luxury of even looking at another person in a romantic way. I’ve met couples that thrived on arguing to the point that they threw kitchen knives at each other when they fought. I once met a couple years ago where one locked the other up in a cage for the night. All of this is good, because it’s diversity in people that makes the world go ’round.

Earl and I added “Big Love” to the TiVo to-do list simply because it’s something different to watch. Will I go crazy with anticipation waiting for the next show? Probably not, I’m reserving that for “Medium” these days. But I think it’s great that another small niche of society gets a little air time.