When I was younger someone asked me, “what is your favorite Disney movie?” You know what I said? I said it’s Pocahontas because the ending was realistic and believable.
I don’t believe in grand love. There, I said it. I believe in people making a choice to love, I believe learning to love someone. I don’t believe in that feeling of destiny, or fate, or that inexplicable pull that someone feels when someone is “the one.” I don’t think love happens, I think people decide to love. Sure, there can be intense attraction, and there can be infatuation. But for me, love is deciding to stay when leaving seems like the easier decision.
Think of all the movies and TV shows that are about love. They’re all the same basically – and believe me, I know what I’m talking about. Romantic comedies are my forte, and I’ve seem them all: the good, the just okay, the bad, and the Katherine Heigl. You know what my favorite one is? A lot Like Love. Because it’s realistic. Because love takes time. Because love takes action, and decision, and sometimes you need to wait six years before you realize that the person that you’re meant to be with was the dude that you slept with on the plane.
Think of Romeo and Juliet. I hate Shakespeare, and I think Shakespeare would have hated me right back. Everything he and his work stands for – the grand gestures, the belief in a love so epic that it actually, really overcomes everything – they all go against every fiber of my being. Romen and Juliet, for instance: two kids from opposing families fall in love, people get killed, people get hurt, and they realize that they can’t be together. Then there’s the whole mess with the stupid poison and the stabbing and the suicide, and basically in the end they die tragically and without any purpose.
I know I’ve probably pissed off a whole slew of theater actors by saying that, a bunch of which are my friends, but I really don’t get it. I’m all for the suspension of disbelief for the sake of art, but Romeo and Juliet’s got people believing that such a passion is all that love truly is, so much so that people become unhappy when they are faced with the sad reality that love is that which has to deal with the day to day dragginess of life and the irritating habits that their partners have. They seek fire and passion and adventure because they believe everything that they’ve been told in the story books. Prince Charming will come in a nice pinstripe blue suit and he’s got a gold credit card and good manners. He’ll make you feel a burning in your loins like you’ve never experienced before. He is not going to grow old, lose hair, and maybe eventually look at his secretary a little bit too long and leeringly. Nope, that’s not how it works.
A friend of mine showed me this video and she told me that to her, this is what love is.
Honestly? I couldn’t get it. I felt more touched by the song than the video and the story.
I think the only reason that Romeo and Juliet stayed to be such an “ideal” love story for people is because they never grew old. They never had to deal with aging skin and irritating monotony and not remembering where you put your teeth. Can you imagine what it would have been like had they had a happy ending? They kiss, get married, their families unite, and they live happily ever after. Seventy five years later, they hate each other and live in spite because they realized a long time ago that they have nothing in common and they don’t really have anything to talk about. Romeo snores like a grizzly bear. Juliet is a nag. They try to remember every day the crazy kids that were so in love and try to remember what it was that kept them going.
You wanna know what I think love is? This is what I think love is.
Call me crazy, but that to me sounds like a love story far greater than Romeo and Juliet’s.