Sep. 23rd, 2009

joreth: (polyamory)
I am often accused of being "unromantic" because my sense of "romance" is not what they teach us in chick flicks. I don't much care for wine and roses and candlelit dinners and walks on the beach. I mean, they can be all fine and good, but the action is not what makes something "romantic" to me, the motivation is. And, frankly, I don't drink alcohol, roses are an unnecessary expenditure, it's hard to see what I'm eating by candlelight and if it's not a rocky Pacific Coast beach and I don't have a camera, I'll get bored just walking along a beach.

It turns out that I actually *am* romantic, but the things that spell "romance" to me are the things that tell me that my partner is paying attention to *me*. Not everyone is the same tastes in things, so someone who does something unique to my particular quirks is *way* more romantic than someone who watched a sappy romantic comedy and is trying the same old, tired moves that someone somewhere said that "all women like".

I also have no belief in things like "fate" and "meant to be". People tend to post hoc rationalize their situations and see that things could only happen this way. What they can't possibly see, since we experience time in a linear fashion, is all the things that *could* be but aren't because they happened this way. In other words, if you're happy in a relationship, you can look back to all the events that led to meeting. So it seems as though things were *leading* in this direction. But that's because you can only see the consequences of what actually happened. What you can't see is who you might have met if you hadn't met this person.  And, statistically, you would have met someone else.

And for some reason, that idea is not romantic. That, if I weren't with you, I'd be with someone else. People think that implies that people are replaceable, interchangeable. And it doesn't. I might have a relationship with someone else if I weren't with the people I'm with, but it doesn't mean that this hypothetical relationship could possibly "replace" the current one. It would be a different one, with its own quirks and benefits and drawbacks.  If things ended with the current love, I couldn't go out and find the one I wasn't with and just replace it like a broken timing belt in my car.

And, as my sweetie [ profile] datan0de said to me the other night, the sheer improbability of our getting together is part of what makes it special. The idea that someone else has decided who my partners will be and that I have no say in the matter, and nothing I do will change things doesn't make a relationship feel "special" to me. It makes it feels forced. But in a universe with an infinite number of possibilities, that something else entirely could have happened (both good and bad possibilities), *that* contributes to making the relationship feel special because it *could* have been something else, and isn't.

Now, this song is intended to be humorous, so the lyrics are intentionally written to feel awkward and increase the "unromanticness" of the concept.  But underlying the humor is the concept that it's not fate, and that doesn't diminish the love I feel in the slightest, and perhaps it enhances it, since love is not something that someone else causes us to feel, but is instead built upon shared memories and history and experiences.

And *that's* romantic to me.

Yep yeah
If I didn't have you
If I didn't have you to hold me tight
(If I didn't have you)
If I didn't have you to lie with at night
(When I'm feeling blue)
If I didn't have you to share my sights
(Share my sights)
And to kiss me and dry my tears when I cry...
Well I, really think that I would...
Have somebody else.
(If I didn't have you)
If I didn't have you, someone else would do
Your love is one in a million
(One in a million)
You couldnt buy it at any price
(Can't buy love)
But of the 9 point 999 hundred thousand other possible loves,
Statistically some of them would be equally nice.
(Equally nice)
Or maybe not as nice but say, smarter than you...
Or dumber but better at sport or...
I'm just saying
(I really think that I would)
(Have somebody else)
(If I didn't have you)
If I didn't have you someone else would do
(Someone else would surely do)
If I were a rich man
And did a diddle diddle diddle diddle diddle diddly
I guess I would be with a surgeon or a model
Or any of the royals or a kennedy
Or a nymphomaniacal exhibitionist heiress to a large chain of hotels
If I were a rich man maybe I would fiddle
Fiddle diddle diddle with the rich man girls
I'm not saying that I'd not love you if I was wealthy or handsome
But realistically there's lots of fish in the sea
And if I had a different rod I would concievably land some
Even though I am fiscally consistantly pitiable
And considerably less brad pitt than brad pitiful
And I'm really so poor and ugly that you reckon only you could possibly love me
And I
(Really think that I would)
(Have somebody else)
Oh yeah
(If I didn't have you)
(Someone else would surely do)
Look, I'm not undervaluing what we've got when I say
That given the role chaos inevitably plays in the inherently flawed notion of fate,
It's obstruse to deduse that I've found my soulmate at the age of 17
It's just mathematically unlikely that at a university in perth
I happened to stumble on the one girl on earth specifically designed for me
And if I may conjecture a further objection love is nothing to do with destined perfection
The connection is strengthened the affection simply grows over time
Like a flower
Or a mushroom
Or a guinea pig
Or a vine
Or a sponge
Or bigotry
... or a banana (banana)
And love is made more powerful by the ongoing drama of shared experience and synergy
And a kind of symbiotic empathy or something like that...
So I trust it would go without saying
That I would feel really very sad if tomorrow you were to fall off something high
Or catch something bad
But I'm just saying
I don't think you're special
I mean... I think your special
You fall within a bell curve
I mean, I'm just saying I
(Think that I would)
(Have somebody else)
I think you are unique and beautiful
You make me happy just by being around
(Being around)
But objectively you would have to agree that baby when I found you
Options are relatively thin on the ground
(Thin on the ground)
You're lovely but there must be girls as lovely as you
Or maybe more open to spanking or scrabble...
I'm just saying
(That I think that I would)
(Have somebody else)
I mean I reckon it's pretty likely that if for example
My first girlfriend Jackie hadn't dumped me
After I kissed Winstons ex-girlfriend Neah at Stephs party back in 1993
And our variables would probably have been altered by the absence of that event
To have meant the advent of a tangential narrative and which we don't meet.
Which is to say there exists a theoretical hypothetical parallel life
Where what is is not as it is and I am not your husband and you are not my wife
And I am a stuntman living in LA
Married to a small blonde portugese skier
Who when she's not training
Does abstract painting
Practices yoga
And brews her own beer
And really like making home movies
And suffers neck down alopecia
But with all my heart and all my mind I know one thing is true
I have just one life and just one love and my love that love is you
And if it wasn't for you
Baby you
(I really think that I would)
(Have somebody else)
Oh yeah
(If I didn't have you)
If I didn't have you someone else would do
(Someone else would surely do)

I also recommend watching to see Tim perform it live.  It's also a shorter version, he cuts out several verses (which I think the song can afford to lose, actually).

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