Neil Peart was once quoted during an interview and his words stuck with me for a while: “I think that love songs are actively harmful. They invent this fantasy that people expect their own relationships to live up to and when they don’t they result in divorce.” It’s a quote for the ages.
He’s right, ya know. Think about it. You’ve all heard Air Supply and empathized with the song before. You know it’s hit a primal chord with you at some point in your love life. Maybe when you were in high school – maybe that first time a girl kicked ya in the proverbial dick. But it’s happened, to be sure. You’ve heard other love songs, seen pointlessly sappy movies, and have been forced to read at least one soppy novel between high school and college. Maybe Gone With the Wind, even which had its moments. It’s happened to the best of us. This I know.
And we’re all tainted by it. Guys, how many times have you been hopelessly in
lustlove with some chick, saw Say Anything… once too often, and thought that you too could win the heart of a woman, if you stood outside of her house with a boombox, playing a cheesy 80’s tune? I know you’ve thought about re-creating that scene – don’t lie to yourselves! You figured that if you did that, she’d like ya. And I know that you women think that you want to be the object of such affection. That is, so long as it’s John Cusack holding the stereo outside. Once they realize that it’s a lovesick puppy out there, the grandiose displays of affection becomes a nightmare… quickly it turns into a “it sounded good at the time”.
Should we not have fantasy? Don’t be stupid. We should just be better conditioned to it – we should see it for what it is: fantasy. When we see some dude in The Matrix bending spoons with thought or guys getting shot and not dying in Highlander, we know that’s fantasy. We know that can’t happen, in reality. Yet when we go see other movies – men as they are forced to go and the women that go knowingly, with tissues in tow – or listen to these love songs, women think that’s what life should be like and men sometimes agree. Women expect an unrealistic reality and men feel they have to deliver it, or at least are supposed to try to, so that they can “get the girl”. We, as a society, haven’t figured out that these romantic bits are fantasy. And that sucks.
Maybe I’m just locked up in a memory or something, thinking about all the stupid things that I’ve done over the years to get a woman’s attention. Or maybe this idea was spawned by a recent movie on TV or something. I don’t think so, though. I think it’s been brewing for a while and finally bubbled over. Don’t get me wrong: I have done some of the most inane and asinine things that you can think of – I was always a sucker for a movie scene – but that was all over long, long ago… probably just something new to write about, I guess. Oo, maybe we can get them to do a warning screen, like what they show before violent movies on TV or something…
Either way, Neil is dead on the money with his quote.