Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Anne Hathaway rocks

I've always been a big Anne Hathaway fan but I'm an even bigger fan after seeing her interview with Barbara Walters after the Oscars (relevant bit starts at 5:30 in):

What is so awesome is that she clearly makes a distinction between being in love and being married. Love her!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Economists are not the most romantic people in the world

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Self-confidence and He's Just Not That Into You

I saw the movie He's Just Not That Into You last weekend and basically hated it. CAUTION: there's sort of a spoiler ahead so if you haven't seen the movie but plan to, feel free to stop reading. On the other hand, I don't think anything I write here can really be considered a 'spoiler' because do you really not know how it's all going to turn out?

The only storyline I found somewhat appealing was the one with Jennifer Aniston and Ben Affleck - she basically issues an ultimatum and actually follows through with leaving him when he won't marry her after 7 years together. They get back together when she realizes that having a man who loves her and who IS committed to her even if he doesn't want to pin the label of marriage on that commitment, is more important than having that label. I would have felt the movie was actually worth my money if they had ended with that and shown a couple that was truly happy and committed without being married, but I guess that's too much to ask for.

Part of what was so disappointing is that I'm actually a huge fan of the book. I know there are plenty of women out there who think it's too simplistic but like Miranda in the SITC episode where the phrase first appeared, I find the idea liberating - forget the games, give up the drama, just accept that he's not into you and move on. In the book (but, I felt, mostly missing from the movie), Greg Behrendt makes the point repeatedly that we all deserve someone who recognizes our fabulousness, that if someone is not acting like he's into you, you deserve better. And the first time I read that, I did my impression of Carrie Fisher in When Harry Met Sally - you know, where she keeps saying "you're right, you're right, I know you're right" when Meg Ryan tells her that her married boyfriend is never going to leave his wife. We all know that we are supposed to be with someone who thinks we're fabulous and that we should walk away from anyone who doesn't treat us as we deserve to be treated. However, what Behrendt doesn't tell you in his book (and CERTAINLY is not shown in this movie) is how to do that, how to stop wanting someone who isn't into us, how to actually walk away and let it go.

The problem is that you have to have a certain level of self-confidence to shrug it off when someone (who you presumably are into) is not that into you. There's an irony here that took me years to appreciate: if you think you're awesome, it's a lot easier to accept that someone else doesn't think so. It's not personal, it's not damaging to your own self-esteem, so you don't need to dissect it, you can just let it go. And the even more ironic catch-22 is that the more you chase after people who are not that into you, the harder it is to find that self confidence, but actually BEING with someone who believes you're fabulous - or simply surrounding yourself with supportive friends who always make you feel great about yourself - can't help but make you feel more self-confident.

I wish they made more movies that showed that!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

News flash: I don't hate Valentine's Day!

Valentine's Day is just around the corner, which means that it's time for me to pull out every ounce of patience I've got to tolerate the nonsense that happy singles are about to be subjected to. I'm not talking about the overwhelming commercialism of a day dedicated to romance and the inevitable focus on coupledom. I'm talking about the well-meaning but completely clueless people who will assume that because I'm single, Valentine's Day must make me suicidal. For example, Allison on womenbloom.com (a blog supposedly about inspiring and supporting women) believes that the world is made up of only three kinds of people:
Category 1 is for those for whom Valentine’s Day is a BIG full blown deal they celebrate with their romantic partner. Category 2 includes those who are in a relationship but frankly, can take it or leave it. The third category is for those who get irritated and depressed about Cupid’s Day because it inevitably makes them feel that they are SINGLE LOSERS (emphasis in original) because they don’t have a significant other. It’s a day on which the entire freaking country conspires to make you think you’re an oddball of the highest order because you’re on your own.

Ironically, Allison goes on to say that she knows (and admires) plenty of singles who throw Valentine's parties for themselves and their friends, celebrating the fact that there's plenty of love outside of coupledom. I'm not sure what world Allison thinks these people live on, since they certainly don't fall into one of her 'three kinds of people'.

I get that some singles hate Valentine's Day; heck, I know plenty of coupled people who think it's stupid too. I also know singles who choose to use February 14th to celebrate their singledom - that's the whole idea behind International Quirkyalone Day. And I know singles who are completely indifferent about Valentine's and treat it like any other day. My point is this: don't assume that just because someone is single, they must be miserable this time of year. Personally, I love Valentine's Day - I think it's awesome to have a day specifically devoted to the idea of telling people we love them. When I'm in a relationship, I love to make a big deal about it, being romantic and gushy. But whether I'm in a relationship or not, I look forward to the candy I know my mom is going to send (and the fact that I get a believable excuse for having lots of chocolate in the house), and I usually wish everyone I see a happy Valentine's Day. I think Quirkyalone's description of International Quirkyalone Day sums it up best: "IQD is a celebration of romance, freedom and individuality. It celebrates true romance (as opposed to the fake versions presented to us in reality dating shows), independence, creativity, friendship, and all kinds of love--including love for yourself."