Friday, January 23, 2009

How to use your girlfriend

Having a girlfriend is great – it means that there is at least one person in the world contractually obligated to remember your birthday, it keeps your parents’ suspicions based on your childhood high-heel wearing proclivities at bay, and the automatic access to her friends means you don’t have to spend as much time looking at the unattractive mugs of the few acquaintances you managed to herd on your own.

Of course, the problem with having a girlfriend is – what exactly are you supposed to do with her? It seems that couples are expected to spend vast swaths of time together – sometimes entire weekends – but doing what? You can’t possibly expect to hold conversations with a mere woman for these durations – their intellects just aren’t designed for such encounters. Furthermore, whatever intersecting hobbies both parties have are incapable of soaking up such time spans, inevitably meaning that the hobby of one party must be focused on, breeding contempt, and thus ending the relationship.

This is a major concern of mine, as I do enjoy being able to stroll around urban centres with an attractive, pleasant-smelling member of the opposite sex adorning my arm, but it seems evidently clear that the genders seem designed to cross-paths for short bursts of reproduction, then retreat back to their respective non-overlapping circles upon realisation that the notion of a happy couple is an illusory one.

This may seem bleak, but do not fret, dear reader – for I have a not immodest beacon of hope to share with you on this very night. The realisation struck me last Thanksgiving, when it dawned on me that two years had effortlessly passed by, and I still considered my girlfriend to not only be tolerable company, but a person I actively desired to spend time with.

Before you dismiss such an outlandish claim as mere facetiousness on my part, I’d like to assure you that I was quite unnerved by this revelation, and retreated to my private quarters to reflect how such a situation could manifest itself.

The secret, dear reader, is education – but not of a scholarly kind. For the past twenty-four months, the time spent with the object of my affections has not fallen into the common pitfalls of most relationships – we have squandered little time on idle chit-chat, feigned no interest in one another’s hobbies, and not made a habit of attending social functions where dancing (and subsequent embarrassment) are destined to follow.

This ‘education’ I speak of? Cultural references. For two years now, we have striven to fill in the gaps in the other’s grasp of popular culture, making our way through the movies and TV-shows that we regretted passing on in a fashion that doesn’t feel like wasted time. Before this remarkable woman entered my life, I’d never have considered that I’d find time to watch the entire Star Wars saga in a fortnight, or have experienced the Indiana Jones stories before the latest film hit the cinemas and disappointed loyal fans everywhere.

Since embarking on this daunting quest for knowledge, the origins of innumerable catchphrases have revealed themselves, the once seemingly non-sequitur utterances from my friends have taken shape as rather useful cultural shorthand, and the joy that comes with knowing, rather that staring blankly, is attributed to the magnificent woman who gently coaxed me into watching an entire season of Heroes in four days.

The best part about this gruelling endeavour? When done in solitude, it is a sad reflection of a man with too much time on his hands; but when done with another, it’s the quintessence of quality time.

1 comment:

SeanH said...

Haha, erm... are you claiming Caitlyn is the equivalent of http://www.imdb.com/Sections/Recommendations/

.... because that could get you a slappin' :P