After creating man, God decides there needs to be someone to give him special companionship and be a team with him. Don't get the Bible wrong, all the stuff about parading animals in front of man to check them out and name them at this point in the middle of the creation of woman isn't meant as a tangent, or even as some might like to suggest humorously a hint of bestiality (oh wait, the SAB does that, too, just farther down the page). Being omniscient, God is already intending to do everything that He eventually does from the moment the universe is created. Some people have suspected that God is showing man that animals all come in male and female varieties so that man will realize that a human female is missing. It's an interesting conjecture, but I think it lacks something, especially since some animals like bees have something more complex going on than simply male/female varieties among the species. I think the purpose is similar, though; man is seeing that there are a lot of different animals in the world, and yet none of them are quite like him.
The SAB notes that in the N.T., the Apostle Paul writes that it's better to be single. I don't think that it's a contradiction at all, though. To a large extent, this is Paul's personal opinion; although I don't think it's outright stated, I think most scholars believe that Paul was probably married early in life, and at the time he writes 1Corinthians, he's divorced. (Perhaps because his wife couldn't stand him once he became a Christian?) Paul is pointing out that one can give oneself wholeheartedly to ministry if one does not have to worry about supporting a family. Notice in verse 7:6, Paul in fact says that nothing in this chapter before verse 10 is a command. Most of what he says here is about sexual relations, and that people who are married should be having a healthy, active sex life to keep their marriage functioning properly. The reason Paul says not to marry is in verse 26 of that same chapter, where he says that there is a "present crisis" during which people should do their best to refrain from forming or breaking relationships. In other words, it's largely a temporary thing, whatever is bothering Paul about marriage here.
When man does spend time naming all the animals, a person who knows a bit about biology and puts two and two together would of course point out (as the SAB does), "There are millions of different species of animals in the world. Assuming man was to name one species per second without stopping to take a break even to sleep, it would take weeks to get through them all." This is actually an interesting point I'd not thought of before I read it in the SAB. The first thing to note is that this is not technically a problem. I believe theologians hold that man was essentially immortal while he was in the garden, and had nothing better to do but whatever God had for him to do, so even if this took years, it's pretty much okay. However, I'm inclined to say that man did not actually have to name each and every single species on the planet. Sure, there are lions, tigers, cheetahs, pumas, etc., but it might have sufficed for man to simply name them all "cat". For one thing, as I pointed out before, the ancient taxonomic systems weren't much like our modern one, and while yes, God knows more about science (biology in this case) than the ancients did, that doesn't mean that even He classifies animals the way that we do. For another thing, something that virtually no one seems to ever note about this story is that man is naming the animals in a language that we cannot identify. A large portion of the millions of species that we have classified today have only a Latin name, but it seems fairly safe to assume that Latin had not yet been invented. Realistically, the naming process here is unfathomable to us because whatever it was, it was a very foreign process to us.
On a side note, (this being a side note, those readers who complain about these tangents can skip this paragraph) some people have suggested that some limited evolutionary processes has caused there to be more species today than there were at the time of the creation. Well, the thought usually comes up in the context of discussing Noah's ark, actually, but wherever you bring it up, it has some problems that are a bit beyond my knowledge of biology. The short version is that theists seem to be arguing against evolution when it's not convenient, but then when it becomes convenient, they suddenly choose to imagine it being a much swifter process than any sane biologist would ever suggest. My personal thought on this particular story is that if God is bringing animals as potential companions to man, there's a lot of animals that simply aren't worth considering, including most if not all animals that live in the sea, and insects. "Okay, Adam, you don't like the 'dragonfly' as you called it? How about this little guy future generations will call pulex irritans? He might make a good companion...oops, looks like you don't get a choice, so what do you want to call him?"
In any case, when this parade is all done, man finds nothing suitable ("meet"). So God makes man fall asleep and fashions him a wife out of his rib. There are a number of interesting poetic things about this concept. I've heard in many sermons that the lesson we should take about God using a piece of the man's body rather than starting over is that a man's wife should truly be like a part of him (v. 23). Also, the fact that it was a part from the middle of his body rather than the top or the bottom indicates an essential equality between man and woman. Lastly, the fact that she was made from bone rather than clay (as man was) might say something about the nature of a woman. Bone is more delicate and lighter than clay, but when clay breaks, it shatters, while bones merely chip, so women therefore have a sort of delicate strength to them that is absent in men.
The last point that the SAB makes about this chapter is a question about the nature of polygamy in the Bible. (Note that if properly understood, the last three verses in the "Yes" column are really in the wrong place. The last two are clearly anti-polygamy, and the third to last is a misunderstanding of cultural context: these women are not brides, but bridesmaids.) Here, God apparently institutes marriage as being a monogamous thing (Jesus says so, at least), yet polygamy is found pretty commonly throughout the scriptures. There is an important distinction between what the Bible shows and what the Bible teaches. Yes, many of these men were polygamists, but God never says that it's okay; in fact, quite a few of them were personally told by God that they'd done a bad thing. The fact is, polygamy is never said to be a sin in the Bible, and frankly, I don't think it is, but it definitely is a problem. I was told by a pastor once that you will find no example of a polygamist in the Bible that didn't have trouble come about from his polygamy, and from what I have read, it's true. Also note that aside from requiring church leaders to be monogamous, God also required kings to be monogamous along with a lot of other rules about kings in Deuteronomy 17:14-20 that apparently David and Solomon never read. The SAB ought to have some notes on that passage, it's a doozy.