Valentines Day is coming, LOLCats, so you lonely hearts better get your best Tinder game on this week. Best advice from moi: Start swiping right for godsake! There’s no bone in the ether where you dismiss all the lefties! Me personally, I like to take my swiping moves out in the real life world these days. Like for example I’ve discovered recently that Friday night at my local Loblaws is an unofficial, unspoken singles night. I know this because a) they switch the jam from 80s Brit pop in the day to house music so it feels like a club not a grocery store and b) the produce section feels exactly like a grade 7 school dance. Everyone is like shuffling around with their awkward not-so-hidden agendas, lingering over radishes, wondering what are they for anyway, gazing over the selection of herbs, trying to come to terms over cilantro, and then furtively looking in each other’s baskets for signals. The sexual tension is palpable, particularly in the phallic fruit section. “Why are the bananas always so green here?” I asked a random dude last Friday, demurely swinging my basket of juicy figs and ripe papayas in my left hand. “Go left!” he actually answered, rolling his cart of cucumbers and zucchinis past me toward the plantains. And so it goes.
Speaking of bananas, let me just swing over to another tangent tree for a minute before I get on to the nitty gritty of today’s life lesson. Last weekend, my fam and I went to see “The Danish Girl” at the world’s most antiquated Cineplex in an uptown business mall that time forgot. This theatre had all that plush red carpeting and seats where the cup holder is on the chair in front of you where your knees are supposed to be and you have to practically hire a sherpa to get to the washroom which after going through a maze of twists and turns, is up two flights of stairs, holy god, and that particular day, the entire place was heated like a sauna. It wasn’t just hormonally-charged me, trust, everyone was sweating and stripped down to their undershirts.
Conversely, a few weeks ago, I saw “The Revenant” in a theatre where there are reclining leather seats and a butler brings you a pint of craft beer in an actual glass, a platter of charcuterie, a blankie, and a pair of slippers. The sound system and air flow quality was such that I could hear Leonardo di Caprio (yes! I would, shut up) shivering hot breath in my left ear and Tom Hardy’s unintelligible (but kind of hot if you like that sort of thing and I think I might) Southern accent in my right ear as though they were snuggled on the leather chair with me as their centre of gravity! And talk about my hormonally charged brain slapping together a pheromone sandwich. What depraved things I did with my charcuterie platter no one else in the theatre would have noticed because they were tucked away in their own wombs with their own thoughts. Genius design.
Anyway, this old Cineplex was one of those theatre scenarios where the audience was flesh on flesh from elbows to thighs stuck together like a Club Pack of vacu-sealed chicken wings IN A GODDAMN SLOW COOKER. And my anxiety level was high because popcorn is the disgusting scourge of all snack food, chewing noises and the smell of the “butter” topping blends with the low-note seepage of muffled farts, just gross. And having to endure the other symphony of the slurping of straws and constant rattling of ice cubes in the shitty plastic drink holders that your knees crash into made me wish I didn’t have to actually sit there and watch the movie and somehow it could just be implanted in my brain and the fam and I could just go to the pub ASAP. Beers, please.
Soooo…when the movie started there was hope for some pretty decent leg sprawl over top of the chairs because we had no one in the seats in front of us but then! 15 minutes in, three ladies sat right in front of us and no joke, they pulled out these electronic caption readers the size of that small iPad and they set them on top of the chairs in front of them. Yes, they were deaf peeps and I have compassion and shit but they came in late and their caption readers were going to be as distracting as any cell phone. If you ever had to suffer some bitch in front of you texting during a movie you know what rage towards strangers feels like.
But! Here’s what. Turns out these ladies and their captions readers were a godsend because Eddie Redmayne is in the Tom Hardy school of acting where if you have no idea what you’re doing, just mumble quietly and make them guess. In case you are living under a rock, “The Danish Girl” is loosely based on a true story about a man about to undergo one of the first sex change operation in the 1920s. In Denmark, obviously although they all had British accents. The captions came in handy for sure. Good movie, but! Eddie Redmayne as a woman, meh, and his chapped pillow lips at the melodramatic deathbed scene made me want to scream to put on some damn lipstick. Not an Oscar-worthy performance for sure and even though I agree that #OscarsSoWhite, I’m still going to watch because Chris Rock is one of my fave comedians AND the actress that played his wife, Alicia Vikander, is luminous in the film. She carries the whole story but she is only nominated for Best SUPPORTING Actress even though she has as much screen time as he does and is infinitely more interesting. So typical, right? Women, in films and real life, are the one who have to support, react, and adapt to situations where the men go through life swinging their balls and pointing their dicks in whatever direction they want, even taking the junk to the dump in this case.
Which brings me swinging back to the first tree, the hashtag relationship goals! Last week, in one of my seminars, ie. wine around the kitchen table, I was talking with some young women and whats up on the Tinder trail and they are all worried about the danger of losing themselves when they get into relationships. Like reading too much into text messages and getting paranoid when they don’t call, flipping out, this, that, and all that goes along with modern mating rituals. Good times. Same stuff I went through in my youth but with a Snapchat stories and electronic evidence.
When I was a teenager, one of my best friends told me that if you ever get boyfriend or want to snag a husband one day, it’s best that he is the one who loves you more than you love him. It was the tao of her crazy mom but I had no reason to dispute it. For the longest time, I kept this thought in the back of my head as I went through my handful of dudes. If they chase after you, then you have the power, is whatI stupidly thought. Be the bunny to the hunter was my modus operandi as I hid under bushes and buried holes in the dirt, reacting with feigned indifference, pretending not to care, but really I was afraid. And then the problem with this game is hunters get bored and want more bunnies. Then as said hunted bunny, guess what, you are left bewildered, and thinking what does that bunny have that I don’t have? Then before you know it, you’re getting a boob job. I mean, not me personally, of course, but I did go blonde once.
At least the young women are aware of this process and that there is a game that must be played even though no one really knows the rules. Hence the “drama” when someone missteps. What man doesn’t have it on his dating profile that he is “not looking for drama?” And also I question why does the man have to be the one who loves the most? Don’t men just want and need as their active verbs when they chose a relationship which somehow women translate as love? As in: they WANT blow jobs and they NEED their socks sorted, or visa versa. Do they actually “love” women? In “The Danish Girl,” before he transitions into a woman, Eddie Redmayne has only eyes for his wife as described by the hot ballerina played by Amber Heard…but really only because he WANTS to wear her dresses and NEEDS someone to help him with makeup. It’s a fucked up situation to have to put your wife through, and yet she is devoted to him until his character’s chapped lip demise. Fierce bitch is a like a bear, fearless in her capacity to love and protect, unlike most of us who would probably be re-activating our Tinder accounts the second we saw some dude wearing our panties the first time. It’s actually inspiring.
So my thoughts are to probably put that game of bunny and hunter to rest. I’m too old and tired to hop around anyway. I could handle being a monkey instead. Way better lifestyle: Blithely swinging through trees with another like minded monkey, picking the lint out of each other’s crevasses without judgment. Scratching. Lolling on the fat branches. Netflix and chill while waiting for the bananas from Loblaws to finally ripen. Get a puppy.