Romantic comedies are tragic, aren't they?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

And, frankly, depressing. They lack the bitterness under the tongue of real life. As a youngster I was consumed by the romance of romance, stories of love and strife, painted with an extravagant wash of drama. In these tales the story was almost always this: the man would first battle his own nature and then, in the end, fight for the woman. A woman, I might mention, that is inevitably a shallow and vapid figure, all-consumed by her unrequited passion.

It starts when The Man enters the picture and steals all of The Woman's meaning and purpose. In the middle, the story revolves around her pining away with longing and suffering, often while he's off gallivanting around with another woman (either in reality or perception). Finally, The (primary) Woman winds up being swept off of her feet by a Grand Gesture, just when she is at the brink of crossing the chasm into bitter spinsterhood (or {gasp!} into the arms of the Wrong Man!).

There is a lot that appeals about the classic romance - the desire to be worthy of being fought for, the primeval need to know that the Male of the species will battle another for your hand, the Grand Romantic Gesture that shows you how meaningful you are (not to mention the excitement and drama of all of this, and the martyrdom of suffering in between!).

And then you look at real life... Love is grand, but my experience of romance has never matched up to this (and, would I *really* want it to?). Romance, in the end, to be sustained, takes work, can become routine, requires compromise, and is rarely so dramatic. Many days of "chop wood, carry water" pass between romantic moments. You find the true, deep abiding love when you find yourself looking up and realizing how fortunate you are to be looking into the eyes of your partner across the table. It is a quiet, subtle thing, this love - but don't mistake it.

Sometimes, though... A Grand Gesture is ok too. ;)

Texas morning

Sunday, August 7, 2011

It's early; I am at the kitchen sink awaiting the final chorus of the coffee machine. In the corner of my eye I see what appears to be the tail end of a young black cat walking by against the sliding door of a house with no cats. As I turn to look she slips from view. I follow her onto the back porch (no cat in sight), and find a hummingbird sipping from the fire bush, flower after flower. The bird hums up into the air, inspects me briefly, and flies away.

My Humble Domicile - by Templates para novo blogger