Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Please pardon the following interruption from your regular HtLaGiOD content :)

I don’t know what I want.

There, Commenter Mark, I’ve said it. I cannot speak for women everywhere, nor will I try to, but I know myself and I know that I don’t really know what it is that I want.

When I was fifteen, I read Pride and Prejudice for the first time, and like many other adolescent girls and British chick-lit heroines out there, I said to myself, “This is it. Mr. Darcy is the man for me.” Many may argue that Mr. Darcy is the original “hot asshole”—I mean, come on, upon proposing marriage to Lizzy he tells her that everyone, his family, his friends, and even he himself, think that this is a terrible idea since clearly his financial situation and social standing are so much superior to hers; if this were modern times, I might write him off as another jerk rando in Monday morning’s post.

And yet women everywhere LOVE him. Go into any Barnes and Noble, or do a search on Amazon and you will find scores of novels written about or inspired by Austen’s Mr. Darcy. So what is it about him that arouses such admiration? Is it just the close-fitting breeches and top hat, or Colin Firth in a wet white shirt? Is it the money? Or is it something more? Mr. Darcy, as much of an ass as he could be, challenged Elizabeth and kept her on her toes. Maybe that’s it then.

According to Commenter Mark, women want to be challenged. They want someone to treat them as an equal, someone who views both of them on even-footing, rather than taking the medieval view that women should be placed on a pedestal and worshipped, but never really touched. As he said, that’s boring, and people generally don’t like being bored.

So what we’re looking for here is some sort of happy medium between a nice guy who is too shy to talk us over dinner or drinks because he’s afraid of saying something stupid or offensive and the guy who oozes confidence and sex appeal and knows that he has his pick of the ladies in the bar, and abuses that knowledge with abandon.

It’s a tall order to fill. Some people get lucky on their first or second try; some people like me are still looking. And so I date.  The really bad or awkward ones I write up here, the others fade away for one benign reason or another and don’t make the blog. And since I don’t know what I want, I keep looking, and will continue to look, trying different combinations or levels of asshole and nice guy until I finally do get it right.

And now, back to the show!


  1. E,

    I agree that Pride and Prejudice is a very good book for trying to get inside the female psyche. Although, my English lit class, being the male dominated class that it was, was filled with Graham Greene novels and other such gems like Angela's Ashes. I had to catch up on my Jane Austin in college on a buddy of mine's recommendation.

    It was my freshman year and I had gone off to New York. My girlfriend (the girl I took to my homecoming dance) and I had tried to do the long distance thing. Things were plugging along, until they weren't. It was two weeks before Thanksgiving and she called me up in tears about how much she missed me, and wanted me to transfer to her college. Now there were two things not in favor of this request. First, she was at t.u. and being the son of a Fightin' Texas Aggie '76, there was no way I would move to Austin. Secondly, I had worked my butt off to get into the school I was at, which she knew, and it had been my goal for a while to graduate from there, which she also knew. So, we talked it out, and decided it would be best if we went our separate ways...(actually I think she cried and I babbled every cliche thing one could say in that situation. That one was rough.)

    Well, I was pretty bummed about it. Thankfully, a new friend of mine, who was a year older than me but also a freshman, took me under his wing and said read this. Oh and by "read this" I mean he threw it at me from across the room and said, "here, it's the hand book to women." I picked it up off my forehead, muttering something about what he could do with that book and thumbed threw it. Since, I no longer had a girlfriend to call at night, i found myself with some spare time and began reading it.

    It turns out, the book throwing SOB was right. Desperate to find anymore help on the subject I went on to read the "annexes," Emma, and Sense and Sensibility. These three books give one a great perspective on life from a very feminine perspective.

    Armed with this new information, I was able to get off the bench again and life went on. Not too long after that I met, wait for it... my sister's daughter's pre-school teacher's daughter. (Say that three times fast.) This, my second relationship, lead me to another very important life be written about later.


  2. And this is why we are best friends.

  3. $10 says that E ends up dating Mark

  4. I think that a girl never knows what she wants until she finds it. The perfect guy, the perfect outfit, the perfect anything. We can have ideas about what our ideal is, but until we actually go out and try it on for size and see what works and what doesnt, it's a mystery.

    A perfect example is E's sister who repeatedly refused to date the man who is now her husband because he didnt fit what she thought was right for her.

    One day I hope I do meet my perfect "Mr. Darcy" who makes my heart go pitter-patter and challenges me in ways I can only imagine. He will be the perfect fit- the pair of shoes you never want to take off, a hot bowl of soup on a cold day, dark chocolate, and everything that just makes you feel good. And for that, I cannot wait!

  5. I wish I could like comments on here! Thanks, Annonymous above, I don't think I could say it better!