Wednesday, November 28, 2012

UPDATED: Romantic Lazypantsness: It's a technical term.


Hot man, Scottish accent, AND coffee? Yes.
So I'm quite sick of the stupid "if you love her, buy her THESE diamonds" holiday commercials, and unfortunately they'll just keep getting MORE annoying until 1) the apocalypse on 12/21 kills the power or 2) Valentine's Day is blessedly behind us. So, let's discuss REAL romance, shall we? Because in my world every kiss does NOT begin with Kay (ok, technically the letter K does begin the word Kiss, but that's like spelling doughnut "donut" for marketing purposes, which irks me anyway), and fuck you De Beers.

A particularly cynical friend of mine thinks romance in concept is deception designed to get a partner into bed/relationship/marriage and is ultimately a big fucking lie because it's unsustainable.I find that attitude...depressing as hell, and so I checked with other friends (male and female, touchy-feely and not) about romance in relationships and as a seduction tool.

Flowers: Husband, CF, and a few other males I asked are unanimously against buying/picking/giving flowers to a woman. And I'm sorry boys, but your reasons are FUCKING STUPID. Worded in various ways, the basic cop-out is "why would I want to buy you/her/anyone flowers as a token of my affection when flowers die? Isn't that a temporary and not-nice symbol?"

Nice try, but fail. Flowers are pretty, they smell nice, they brighten a room/day/life for a time, and know what? They MAKE RECIPIENTS SMILE. Their temporary nature, if you must be philosophical about it, is a reminder not to take things for granted because everything is temporary.

The fact is, not giving your partner flowers because YOU don't like them is a selfish reason. If SHE doesn't like flowers you're in the clear. If flowers make her day it's romantic to give them: it shows you're thinking about HER feelings.

Candlelight: CF doesn't like candlelight because he thinks it's part of an ulterior-motive: creating a seduction. Well...um...FUCKING DUH. I'm sorry, when did being seduced become a bad thing?

Soft lighting is the equivelent of make-up, lingerie, high heels, a dress, shaving, suit-and-tie, perfume/cologne or any other "dressing up" mask people wear to make themselves look appealing to their partner. Of COURSE you want your partner to find you sexy, and low lights are an easy way to 1) set a mood of quiet attentiveness and 2) instantly airbrush some of the flaws about which a person may be self conscious (stretch marks come to mind: they're fucking ANNOYINGLY obvious in harsh light). Do you notice the flaws? Maybe not, and finding your partner attractive with all his/her flaws is part of what makes you awesome. But it's not about whether YOU notice them: it's about whether HE/SHE feels self-conscious about them. Is a partner who feels attractive not a better date than one who is distracted by self-doubt? Yeah. Thought so.

Compliments/Cards/Mushy Talk: Seriously, this isn't romance, people. This is part of loving someone. If you aren't randomly complementing your partner after X years, why the fuck NOT? If you like something about him/her, TELL THEM. Your partner isn't a mind reader, and everyone likes to be told in no uncertain terms that they're appreciated, loved, liked, admired, that their boobs look awesome that day.

Jewelry: I admit I'm not a very girly girl when it comes to traditional presents. It irks me that jewelry commericals insist so strongly that men ONLY love their women if they buy fancy-pants cold stones. However, if that's what gets you all mushy and gooey about your partner I say go for it.

It's not that difficult: choose the gifts that your PARTNER will love. For example, for our anniversary this year I got my husband a pistol. Because he's an avid gun enthusiast and his plans of saving for it were dashed in the accident that stole a few months of his time. It meant something to him, even though I don't necessarily find a gun a romantic gift. *shrug* If you want to romance ME with gifts, buy me books. Get me a MN Wild jersey (my most EXCELLENT anniversary gift from Husband last year) or tickets. Clean my house so I can write. Make me dinner. BUY ME FUCKING FLOWERS*. Ha.
Effort, people. EFFORT: If "Romance" is effort put in to woo your partner and left at the wayside after a few years/marriage/kids/etc then maybe it was a deception. In that case, I guess I can agree with CF's assessment, but it makes me sad. But mostly I think it's laziness, not intentional jackassery that locks romance in a closet.

I've been guilty of romantic lazypantsness. It sucks: resentment and unappreciated invisibility are sneaky bastards who weasel their way between people in relationship: they must be executed. No matter how long a couple has been together, a little effort to set a scene, to purposefully seduce, to ROMANCE their partner is always an appreciated and cherished gesture. Ultimately, romance is never a waste if it makes you both feel appreciated, wanted, and valued, right? The trappings are utterly subjective, but they're still an important part of a loving and long-term relationship.

*in the interest of not making my husband look like a dick, he HAS given flowers on multiple occasions after we had that exact discussion about the worth of floral gifts early on in our relationship. Win.

UPDATE: I've been told Husband DID buy flowers before the conversation. However, I maintain we did HAVE that conversation at some point. Since I don't recall whether it was before or post-flowers, I concede the point.

Enough mush. On to the most important point of this post:

Let's discuss the total bowl of awesome it would be to give me Gerard Butler (preferably naked but not required) for any occasion, shall we?

8 comments:

  1. Anonymous11:57 AM

    Cough cough cough...

    I have bought you flowers without said conversations being had.

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  2. i've never been impressed with that romantic stuff. the way to my heart is electronics and anything that tickles my geek boner. oh and vodka; lots of vodka.

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  3. LOVE this. And although I am not a big jewelry lover either, I do not discriminate against diamonds, preferably large ones. Diamonds are forever, after all.

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  4. Amen! I think romance isn't about the traditional symbols and chivalry. It is about really listening and paying attention to your partner and then show them you're listening by doing things for them that they need or want. My ex-husband was an unromantic wanker, but I was ok with the un-romance. In 7 years of relationship he sent me flowers once and they were hideous. But the stuff I loved was him detailing my car as a surprise, taking out the trash without me hassling him, cleaning the house while I was away on a business trip (rare but appreciated), or simply knowing when I was done in a social situation and making the excuse to leave so I could stop being miserable. And for him I chose to give him experiences (indoor skydiving, concert tickets, camping trips) instead of gifts because they have a more lasting impression. I guess what I'm badly trying to say is that romance is different for everyone and trying to force a Hollywood romantic ideal on someone isn't fair and probably isn't going to help anyone.

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  5. You said "cold stones." And my inner twelve-year-old laughed like a loon.

    Seriously, though, I once had a guy try to woo me on his terms--he bought be gifts all the time, was extremely touchy-feely, and talked about his feelings all the time. It squicked me out, and I told him so. He didn't stop. I dumped him.

    Romance is watching Doctor Who just so you get my references and telling me that my dog is the greatest dog to ever dog.

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  6. Romantic lazypants sucks... I love bold actions of affection. But, as the partner of a 6 year relationship I do accept that life gets in the way and sometimes you go through lulls. The nice thing? Once you REMEMBER you enjoy romance, it's very easy to try a nice gesture--doesn't have to be big. I don't care if it's wrong, I like flowers and cards and candlelight once in awhile. Guess what happens when a man is too "cool" or "evolved" to try things like this? He ends up alone. So, enjoy your frozen dinners, bitches. Nice post :)

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  7. Men don't want to pick flowers because it makes them feel like sissies. All that other crap they told you was pure evasion. I love picking flowers myself, but only if they taste good.

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  8. My boyfriend is the epitome of romantic laziness. In order to get a birthday present out of him, I had to have a total meltdown, which was exhausting and irritating. He's good with compliments, so I guess that's a plus. And he bought me socks one day because he remembered I needed them. Thank gawd he's cute.

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