I’ve discovered, perhaps, the most revolutionary form of dating ever conceived. Maybe not so much “discovered” but “realized”. It’s happened about a dozen times in the last few months but I wasn’t consciously aware of it until today.
You can, for the most part, date someone for about two or three years and have the relationship take place entirely in your head.
Case in point: I was at the beach before work, relaxing and enjoying the surf. Naturally, there were a lot of pretty girls there too. One such girl caught my eye, particularly because she wasn’t laying about, but walking in the water where the tide was coming in. She walked right in between the sand bars regardless of the depth of the water (NJ and it’s sideways beach erosion, how I missed thee). I thought, “Why is this girl not staying in the shallow end? She probably doesn’t like to take the easy route in life. I could go for a girl like that.” When she turned around and I saw her face, this is what ran through my mind:
She walks by me and notices that I am wearing my gray park system t-shirt and asks when the park starts charging for daily passes. I tell her we start charging on the 15th, but she should just come after 4 p.m. when it’s free. We introduce ourselves; she tells me that her name is Emily (I think I picked this because I once had a guinea pig named Emily when I was 12, so it was the first name that came to mind). Emily is a good looking girl. She’s 22-years-old with bleach blonde hair (which is fake, btw) and is somewhere in the neighborhood of 5’9″. She just moved to Red Bank from Lancaster, PA because she was sick of the Amish. I tell her that I could show her around the area and we agree to meet later that night.
It turns out that we have a lot in common. She likes indie music that isn’t pretentious, Woody Allen, and has been a closet Giants fan her entire life.
The next six months take place in about six seconds. We meet each other’s parents (they hate me right from the start), she familiarizes herself with “Kevin Smith’s NJ”, and she finds my toneless body endearing. I make her mix tapes with at least one Morrissey song on each one, carefully choosing the least depressing songs. At six months, I’m pretty much in love. But I don’t tell her… not after the last two times I said it before.
Between six months and a year we go on vacation to California, and I move in with her because I’m commuting to NYC. I can easily pay my half of the rent. She tells me she loves me. The feeling is mutual.
Everything is Kosher until the second year. She is tired of me; My quirks have gone from endearing to annoying. I have no aspirations to become more than I am at the moment, and it drives her crazy. Despite my best efforts, she cannot be with me any more. One day, she tells me that she isn’t in love with me any more and lists the reasons why, while trying to be nice. She says she still wants to be friends. However, having heard that line countless times and knowing that it’s the polite way of saying, “Get out of my life you pathetic piece of shit”, I pack all of my belongings (which I inexplicably fit into my car) and drive back to Colts Neck. We never speak again.
By the time I finished running this scenario, the real life “Emily” had vanished. I looked to my left and my right, back at the ocean, then trudged over to the maintenance building to get ready for work.
I think it was upon reading a story from Klosterman’s “Sex, Drugs, and Coco Puffs”, about how he made up a girlfriend in his head, that got me thinking about the faux- girlfriend idea. Hell, I’ve even got back together with old flames (if only for a short while). The incredible part is that I actually feel as if I’ve experienced an entire relationship within two or three minutes, minus real emotions.
In every scenario I’ve run, it always ends with a break up. I was going to propose to this one girl a few weeks back, but it turned out she was a lesbian. Breaking up is just so normal that I can’t even get married in a fantasy environment.
eHarmony and Match.com are not worth the money. Why spend months, even years searching for your soul mate using arbitrary personality matches when you can attain them instantly? And they find you attractive! All you need is a good imagination and a slight disconnection from reality.
And to answer your question: Yes, I am fucking pathetic.