All The World’s A Stage

…said the Bard but what else would you expect from a playright?

You can just like looking at a person, even watching them do things, without wanting to do anything with them. I think we’re attached to some stories. Some people just look really good in those stories. Like running through the wheat fields of Punjab into the open arms of a leather jacket wearing man. I never liked that scene but millions do. But I know what it is to like a scene when I imagine falling in love between the aisles of a bookshop or library. I’ve even written about it. Yet in reality, in the presence of books, I’m annoyed by the sounds, smells & bodies of others. I find them intrusive & unwelcome diversions from the love I want to make to the stories between the pages. The library is a good setting & all else, like it, needs to be seen from the outside. Not experienced as though I’m in the story.

I think that’s why we find discontent in so many of our relationships that seemed perfect & yet. We like the idea of a friendship that looks a certain way, a romance that plays out this way, sex that looks the way porn shows it, a relationship that sounds like a – you guessed it – fairytale. We love stories. We’re each master storytellers in our mind for audiences of one.

The things we do in real life with other people though, like sex, travel, cooking – these only really feel magical when they happen unpredictably. Even then most of us don’t handle the dissonance between what we thought it should look like & what it does. And we wreck our experiences of these because they don’t match our preferred stories.

That’s okay too, I guess. Real life is a story we tell ourselves to cope with the randomness of existence. If guilty pleasures are your preferred storyline, sex with someone you don’t consider goodlooking or camaraderie with someone in a different social class or an unfashionable hobby would work well for you.

We are all just performing, after all. We don’t often get to cast the right person for our scripts but the show does go on.


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