Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Rhett Butler Marries Scarlett O'Hara and Other Unfortunate Truths

The following post is merely meant to be instructive in how my brain works. I'm not trying to make a point or get attention or garner pity. In fact, if this does attract pity from anyone, I will delete this blog and run off to live in a hermitage in the Himalayas.

(Okay - maybe I won't go that far. But I will rage at said-purveyors-of-pity with a tortured "YOU COMPLETELY MISSED THE POINT, ASSBRAIN!!" shouted out into the stratosphere. It's how I siphon off my rage ^_^)

~*~begin stream of consciousness~*~

About eleven years ago, I was a lowly staff writer for The Snowdrift, the student-run newspaper at Snow College in Ephraim, Utah. Near the end of the spring semester, one of the opinion columnists who was about to graduate wrote a column in which his only goal was to be an ass. The column was more or less a stream-of-consciousness of every controversial and mean-spirited thing he could think of. I don't remember everything he wrote in that column - it was pretty disjointed - but I do remember that he called every female student at Snow fat and ugly. I also remember him saying afterwards that nobody read the paper unless there was something controversial, and this experiment proved him right.

Indeed it did. After his column was printed, it seemed like every woman (and a good handful of the men) at Snow wrote in to complain. The opinion section of the next issue had to carve out a good chunk of space to devote to these responses. I'd say he achieved his goal. People were reading the paper and talking about it. He got their attention, even if it was negative attention. And he wasn't apologetic in the slightest.

Why am I bringing this up? To make mention of the fact that you don't get noticed unless you do something incredibly stupid - or if you do something that could be perceived as incredibly stupid.

This is why I thought of the episode with the newspaper. Yesterday I was looking for a birthday present for my nephew (who turns one in a little over a week) and I happened to notice this adorable piece of baby couture -

I laughed, snapped a picture for Instagram and captioned it with that if my niece was still a little baby, I would totally buy this for her! (and if they had a version with camo and tractors, maybe I'd get one for my nephew. Hey, a little advertising never hurts.)

After I posted the picture and the caption, that obscenely annoying Stupid Desperate Voice in my head said "OMG -YOU IDIOT! You don't post stuff like that on social media! What if some guy sees it and writes you off as some pathetic old maid who's too desperate for a date and then he won't ask you out!"

To which I replied - "Dear Stupid Desperate Voice - I haven't been on a date since the first Hobbit movie came out. I don't think a picture of a onesie on a clearance rack at WalMart is going to affect that too much. And even if it does - it's a hell of a lot more attention than I've attracted in the last three years! I'll take anything at this point!"

(Yes, I have conversations with my mind chatter. I'm probably certifiably insane. But I somehow manage to function in the normal world).

This got me to thinking about how my attitudes and outlooks on dating have changed. It's been on my mind a lot lately. Ever since we had that idiotic "Dating Box" lesson at church a few weeks ago (it's some high school hold-over that these kids have that lit the fire under the boys' asses to ask girls out to prom or something) - I've decided that I'm taking on the Dowager Countess Violet (you know - Maggie Smith's character on Downton Abbey) outlook on this aspect of life. I've been in the game so long and am so tired of it that I might as well say whatever comes to my mind about it. Just like when your grandparents saw rude and offensive things and nobody bats an eye because Grandma's just crazy like that. That's what I'm going to do. Actually - I've already been doing it.

Some time ago, I was at a church activity for my Young Single Adult ward (which is an LDS congregation made up of single people ages 18-31. I'll be 30 in a little over a month, so I've got one foot in the grave as far as the YSA's are concerned).  At that activity, there was a guy that was about my age and he was completely surrounded by 20-22 year olds, just giggling and flirting with him like he was the last piece of meat at the buffet. I stood back and watched the scene unfold, like I had hundreds of times before, shaking my head at the idiocy on display.

After a while, we chanced to be at the Rice Krispy treat table at the same time. We introduced ourselves to each other and asked the typical "Where do you live?" "Are you working or going to school?" "Where do you work/What are you studying?" etc. Somewhere in the conversation his age came up and the comment just fell out of my mouth - "Ah - that explains the gaggle of fangirls you had earlier." He asked me to elaborate and I said "You're older, good-looking, have a good job, you're new(ish) in the ward - it's like throwing a bucket of blood in shark-infested waters!" He laughed and I threw out my Countless Violet comparison as a joke. Later that night, Stupid Desperate Voice came through and said "Oh, good job you idiot. He probably thinks you're a complete bitch for saying those things!" And my next thought was - "If he does, let him! That was damn hilarious!"

Here is my point - too many single women look at being single as a total hardship. Even when they're looking for things to be happy about, it's more akin to Scarlett O'Hara looking out at her family's plantation that has been made desolate by war and devastation and proclaiming through gritted teeth as she shakes her fist to the heavens - "I'LL NEVER BE HUNGRY AGAIN!!!!!"

Does anybody remember this movie in its entirety? Do you remember Scarlett O'Hara. She was a complete and total bitch. I defy you to find me a protagonist in any medium of fiction who is more heinous, awful, selfish, bratty, and whiny than her. She is patently unlikable and you're almost rooting for her to keel over dead at ANY point during the movie. And yet - she is the one who wins Rhett Butler - who is arguably every red-blooded female's dream guy (him or Mr. Darcy - take your pick), while all this time that wretched whore is pining after that complete and utter twit Ashley. So, I guess it helps to be the "Mean Girl" because guys like that? I have no freaking idea -  don't ask me to explain the male psyche. Actually - don't ask me to explain the female psyche either, because and they're just as batshit insane.

So, we've got all these young women claiming that they don't need a man and they don't need marriage and they're defiantly yelling out into the world that they ARE LOVED, DAMMIT! But really, they're just saying that to diffuse the stigma (or whatever) of being single. They are DETERMINED to feel loved and valued no matter what!

It's hilariously sad to watch.

These are just my observations and musings on my generations' modes and methods and attitudes of dating. They're asinine and completely ridiculous, but it's what I have to work with. I'm not bitter or resentful at all. On the contrary - I'm happy to make jokes at their desperation and insanity. I'm not going to close with scripture or any kind of motivational speechifying, because I think we get enough of that and it's not like it helps. And I'm not here to help anybody. I'm here to point and laugh at it all. Because I have reached the point in my dating process that everything is either going to be hilarious or it's going to be depressing. And I've had enough of depressing. Everything is so serious nowadays that I'm going to take my utter discouragement and make a joke out of it. You get attention by making fat jokes. Scarlett O'Hara is a bitch, but she still wins the hot guy in the end. I may be loved in the metaphoric sense, but it doesn't do me a damn lick of good in any other quantifiable ways.

And I've made peace with that.

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