Single girls – especially independent single girls – are not supposed to want a significant other.

It’s written somewhere in the Independent Single Girls’ Handbook – “thou shalt be self-sufficient”.

I have rationalized this by repeatedly stating to myself the following mantra: If I can catch a fish by myself, then I obviously don’t need a man in my life.

There’s a serious flaw in this logic, by the way, and I’m not just talking about the fact that I’ve been fishing for close to six years now and I’ve only managed to catch 2 fish.

No, the flaw is much simpler than not catching fish.

It’s about human contact.

Practically every human being on this planet craves touch, affection, tenderness. Even the Maslow baby monkeys needed affection and touch to develop into adult monkeys.

Unfortunately, these are not things that come easily if it’s just you and your cat, Gunther.

Gunther is nice and all, but he’s just not your type.

Why, you ask?

Well, for one thing, his name is Gunther.

For another, he’s a different species and I’m not even going to get into how wrong that is.

So let’s move on to the point of all this rambling, shall we?

I’m falling for a guy.

Gasp!

Shock and awe!

The self-sufficient, happily independent girl is falling for a guy.

What’s his name, you ask?

His name isn’t important, mostly because I think that names can ruin a good story.

Like a sappy love story with a guy named Hansel.

It’s just plain ridiculous.

Or, better yet, who’s going to believe that a guy named Buster is the hero of some madcap, international spy adventure?

Names are just nonsense, anyway.

It’s not like you’re going to remember it or even know who he is, so what’s the point?

Anyway, I’m falling for him.

I have been for what seems like years, mostly because we’ve been really good at ignoring the Pink Elephant that moved into the living room when we met.

I don’t even notice the trumpeting anymore.

I’ve forgotten what a real relationship looks like.

I’ve also forgotten how to seek out a real relationship, which is, I think, even more sad.

It’s all as elusive as Bigfoot – I have a feeling it’s there, but I just can’t see it.

He’s not as hairy as Bigfoot, in case you were wondering.

I didn’t want you to get the wrong impression, that I might have fallen for the Wolfman, because I didn’t…and now I’m rambling.

Right.

Moving on.

The problem with all of this, though, is that this is falling in the good sense.

At least if you compare it to falling in the bad sense then it’s falling in the good sense.

I know it isn’t falling in the bad sense – the “Oh my god, my parachute won’t open and I’m going to – SPLAT!” sense.

And, in all honesty, it could be worse.

He could actually know that I’m falling for him.

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, I haven’t told him.

Maybe it’s self-preservation, a just-in-case scenario.

Like carrying around my galoshes, an umbrella, and a baseball cap – just in case the skies open and the next apocalyptic flood rains down upon us all.

I’m not a fan of full blown, in-your-face rejection.

You know, the kind of rejection where the guy doesn’t even have to say anything; he just looks at you and you feel like you’ve been sucker-punched in the gut by Andre the Giant.

I’ve been there before, when I was younger.

I’d rather not go back, thank you very much.

So, for right now, I’m content to stay in the holding pattern we’ve so quaintly established and maneuver my way around the Pink Elephant.

Of course, I’m hoping the elephant doesn’t decide to stampede and run me into the ground.

Then again, if it did, I wouldn’t have to tell him how I feel so it might be nice all around.

“I hear they’re selling houses in Denial and I think I’d like to sign up for a nice 2-bedroom with a garage where I can store my guilt when I’m not using it.”

Right, holding pattern it is, then.

I’d order a drink but I’m afraid the Elephant might resent the implication…

I’ve been hurt.

In the past my heart has been so broken that I, in fits of dedicated melodrama and self-pity, thought that I might actually die. The ache has been so deep, profound, prolonged and intense that just inhaling and exhaling cut my aortic tissue like the dull blade of a blunt bread-knife on crusty, stale rye.

Pain.

Grating.

Cutting.

Sawing.

Breathe. Breathe. Breathe.

Slice. Slice. Slice.

The fact that human beings are capable of feeling emotional pain so intensely that it becomes physical is a strange phenomenon. So strange, in fact, that scientists do not know how, or why, when we feel heartbreak, our hearts actually ACHE.

It is rumored that we can even die from this pain.

In 2003 Johnny Cash died within 3 months of his wife June. For some it is clear that Cash died of a broken heart. Nobody really knows. Broken Heart Syndrome is commonly attributed to the death of a person whose spouse is recently deceased, and is clinically different from a heart attack because the patient had few risk factors for heart disease and was previously healthy prior to the heart muscles weakening.

It’s one of ‘those things’.

You know.

“Those things”.

Like missing socks and unexplained stains on pale beige carpet.

Like broken down cars in desolate places.

Lately I’ve wondered if accidentally inflicting heartache is worse than feeling it myself. My thoughts are inconclusive, but the turmoil is steady and nauseating. I loathe myself but am powerless to end it. I cannot force myself to feel something I do not. I cannot will my heart to open when who-ever has the damn key has buggered off down the pub with his mates, the dog, and a couple of rent-a-scrags from the local lap-dance emporium that exists in a parallel universe inside a donkeys ass, with neon lights, chrome plated karaoke booths and busty, shrewish barmaids who lick beer foam from manicured fingertips and whisper throaty suggestions into the hairy, lice-infested ears of bored customers.

How’d you like them apples?

I realize that, if I want to get to the bottom of heartbreak, I must first get to the bottom of love.

That’s right.

Love.

‘Tis indeed a funny and elusive thing.

Like fairies.

And just as mystical.

It’s never around when you want it, completely invisible if you search for it, and smacks you over the head as soon as you decide you’re content and satisfied without it.

See? Just like fairies.

And, again just like those sneaky fairies, love is hard to hold on to. If you try to hold it close it’s little legs will kick and grind while tiny teeth bite into the fleshy palm of your hand and petite, gossamer wings beat out frenzied flutterings against your gripping fingers.

Love, like fairies, does not like to be trapped.

Love, and fairies, prefer to fly and flit and dance around your head and heart, like pesky gnats and flies on a summers day.

Free.

Love.

Some people go a whole lifetime without ever experiencing it. Others seem to fall over it, arse over turkey, every five minutes. Some of us find lasting love while others get brief spurts of it that spur them on to greater heights and bigger dreams. To others, still, it is a burden, something to be embittered and weighed down by, a heavy chain around a bowed neck.

But what is love?

I don’t mean the love we feel for our fathers, mothers, children, friends, pets or the fresh lobster pasta and triple vodka Bloody Mary’s at The Ivy, but the ‘falling-in-love’ love, the one that renders people stupid and leaves them dribbling in padded corners.

WHAT IS IT?!!!

I’ve felt it. I’ve given it. I’ve received it. I’ve even been lucky enough to have the giving and receiving of love occur at the same time, WITH THE SAME PERSON!!!! A rare occurrence indeed.

BUT WHAT IS IT????

I’ve felt it, but I can’t define it. I’ve had it, been uplifted by it, lost it and missed it. I’ve looked under rocks for it, seen glimpses of it behind mossy-barked trees in dappled glades behind waterfalls and rainbows…. but I’ve never been able to say, for certain, what it really is.

So lets give it a whirl, shall we?

Sigmund Freud once speculated that a man could be in love with a woman for six years and not know it until many years later.

Sigmund Freud was, in my opinion, a fucking quack.

Wikipedia defines love as “a basic dimension of human experience that is variously conveyed as a sense of tender affection, an intense attraction, the foundation of intimacy and good interpersonal chemistry, willing self-sacrifice on behalf of another, and as an ineffable sense of affinity or connection to nature, other living beings, or even that which is unseen. It manifests itself in feelings, emotion, behavior, thoughts, perception and attitude. It influences, underlies and defines major patterns in interpersonal relationships and self-identification.”

Fuck that.

The more I read the less I know, the less I want to know, and the less I give a shit about the question.

It starts to strike me that we, humans, are unable to define love, but are sometimes adept at expressing it, if we’ve felt it, that is.

I poke about on the Internet and finally discover a way to solve some of our problems with love.

I come across THE LOVE CALCULATOR.

Beguiled by the sheer brilliance of this contraption I type in my own name, and that of another. My chest flutters. I breathe. Trepidation fills the air. I press “calculate” and read what follows.

miss ass bandit loves attention deficit disorder




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“Dr. Love thinks that a relationship between miss (ass) bandit and attention deficit disorder has a reasonable chance of working out, but on the other hand, it might not. Your relationship may suffer good and bad times. If things might not be working out as you would like them to, do not hesitate to talk about it with the person involved. Spend time together, talk with each other.”

Apparently it’s as easy as that.

And somehow, no matter how silly that sounds… I am calmed by it.

Zoebrock14i

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