When I was a little girl I used to read fairy tales. In fairy tales you meet Prince Charming and he's everything you ever wanted. In fairy tales the bad guy is very easy to spot. The bad guy is always wearing a black cape so you always know who he is. Then you grow up and you realize that Prince Charming is not as easy to find as you thought. You realize the bad guy is not wearing a black cape and he's not easy to spot; he's really funny, and he makes you laugh, and he has perfect hair.
It starts so young, and I'm angry about that. The garbage we're taught. About love, about what's "romantic." Look at so many of the so-called romantic figures in books and movies. Do we ever stop and think how many of them would cause serious and drastic unhappiness after The End? Why are sick and dangerous personality types so often shown a passionate and tragic and something to be longed for when those are the very ones you should run for your life from? Think about it. Heathcliff. Romeo. Don Juan. Jay Gatsby. Rochester. Mr. Darcy. From the rigid control freak in The Sound of Music to all the bad boys some woman goes running to the airport to catch in the last minute of every romantic comedy. She should let him leave. Your time is so valuable, and look at these guys--depressive and moody and violent and immature and self-centered. And what about the big daddy of them all, Prince Charming? What was his secret life? We dont know anything about him, other then he looks good and comes to the rescue.
Maybe there aren’t any happily ever afters, or white knights who ride in on valiant steeds to save the day. Maybe, in real life, Prince Charming isn’t always perfect – he’s just as flawed as everyone else in the tale. And that princess, alone in her tower? She’s not perfect either. Birds don’t braid her hair every morning, she can’t serenade wild forest creatures into servitude, and she doesn’t even own a ball gown. But she’s also smart enough to know not to accept poisoned apples from strangers, or prick her finger on deadly spindles. She doesn’t wait around for a prince to charge in and slay the dragon. Maybe she saves herself and in the end, rides off into her own goddamned sunset.
I feel like men are more romantic than women. When we get married we marry, like, one girl, 'cause we're resistant the whole way until we meet one girl and we think I'd be an idiot if I didn't marry this girl she's so great. But it seems like girls get to a place where they just kinda pick the best option... 'Oh he's got a good job.' I mean they spend their whole life looking for Prince Charming and then they marry the guy who's got a good job and is gonna stick around.
Some would say it is madness to want a woman this way, but I think it must be love. Not the tepid, fickle love of which the poets sing—the love that forms or fades with kindness or cruelty. No, this love is something more divine—like the love of a god, both vengeful and benign. It is as constant as the sea. And as beautiful. As dangerous. As mysterious. She is the only woman to ever refuse me. And yet, I want…
Oh, if somewhere there were a being strong and handsome, a valiant heart, passionate and sensitive at once, a poet's spirit in an angel's form, a lyre with strings of steel, sounding sweet-sad epithalamiums to the heavens, then why should she not find that being?
I suddenly felt the way Cinderella might have felt if she hadn’t had that convenient midnight curfew: my feet were hurting, my hair was slipping free from its pins, and my makeup was getting all smudged from sweat. I was unbelievably tired, undeniably depressed, and I just wanted charming.
I haven't dated Clancy—God help me if I do—but he's tipping my all-men-are-jackasses theory completely over the edge of the scale. To add insult to injury, he looks like the damn cover of a romance novel. I hate those covers.