Monday, October 19, 2009

No farting, please.

Or talking with your mouth full, or leaving the toothpaste open.

Small, nasty little habits we have, which can drill the small holes of annoyance through which happiness seeps out of a relationship. Everybody has them, the trick is identifying those you can´t absolutely bear near you. Like that awful smell that emanates from a day old gym shirt that´s still lying on the bathroom floor. Or putting on your makeup in the car. Although this may sound like we´re going into Seinfeld territory, there are some habits that really get you on the other side of pissed. And since they are habitual (hence their name) it is very possible that they will happen every day. Every day. For as long as you both shall live.

So, either be watchful and wary, running from them like a startled cat, or learn to accept and live with them. Because you have them too, and you may need some slack the next time those beans start making music.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The best day in your life

It´s been an average Wednesday. As your hand extends to open the door, your mouth stretches from ear to ear. Your steps rap joyfully on the floor, taking you to where you´ll find the hug that greets you. That night, your head rests calmly on the pillow, and you know tomorrow is going to be another best day.
Let´s face it, if you think your wedding day was (or is going to be) the best day of your life, you might as well die: there´s nothing left to look forward to.
Your best day has to be this one. Today. An average Whateverday that takes you from sunrise to sunset, waking up to and going to sleep with, the person you feel happiest with.
That´s the target. I´m not saying that every day should be ideal, just that it could be. You shouldn´t need a big production, like a wedding, or a birthday, to feel great about your relationship. Because life happens every day, not just on your anniversary.
So go ahead, have crappy days, that´s ok. But have wonderful, average days, too.
You just have to find the person to share them with.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Just a friend

And that´s the problem with that dagger: "let´s JUST be friends" means exactly that. Just. As in, there´s nothing else. Nichts. Because a warm coat of fur, big ears, and waggly tail can fill that space too, and you are not looking for a pet here.
Physical attraction is not the most important thing in a relationship, but it is (very) important. It tips the scales on the "I´m going to like waking up to you everyday for the rest of my life, side". It makes you tingle in that tender place when you suddenly see your partner. It´s the blow that forces that "wow" from your lips when you meet for a date.
Time does not fade it when you combine it with all the other things that make a good relationship turn.
So go ahead and look out for beauty in the form you can best appreciate it, and pair it up with other good qualities. Or just look for a friend in your nearest kennel.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Plastic or human?

Did you ever date the very good-looking dummy? How long before you were bored?
The shape of perfection is round, and just as a wheel rests on spokes, so does a relationship (I learned about the wheel-spokes thing at an incredible seminar
When looking for the person you plan to spend the rest of your life with (yeah, that long), you should consider four basic aspects: physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual.
Leave one out, and your wheel won´t turn. Don´t believe me?
Consider this: You are very attracted to somebody. Just thinking about him/her makes you fell like a toddler learning to walk. You get close, you want to impress, so you tell your wittiest joke. No response. Those beautiful eyes are glazed with stupidity. You say you´ll try the next belly-acher in your repertoire, the glaze deepens as that small, unused brain churns over what you just said. You delude yourself thinking, I don´t need him/her to laugh at my jokes, or even understand what I said, as long as I have that knock-out by my side (specially in a horizontal setting, of course).
Newsflash: There isn´t a plastic surgeon in the world that can make a 50-year-old look like a 20-year-old. Those looks will be gone sooner than later, and you´ll end up waking next to the not-so-good-looking-anymore dummy who still doesn´t get you.
By all means, go ahead and admire the dummies for what they are: bright decorations. Just remember to go home with a human.

Luisa F. Toledo

P.S. Next time we´ll go into the "Let´s just be friends" dungeon.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Making a mole out of a mountain

Whenever I introduced a new boyfriend to my mother she would say, “You think he´s perfect, because you haven´t seen the mole on his nose yet.” I, would call my mother ridiculous (very softly under my breath, in a dark room, in a house three miles away). The paragon of manhood I was currently dating most certainly did not have a freckle, let alone a mole on his chiseled nose. But, sure enough, towards the end of the relationship, there it would appear, a lump that deserved its own flag and national anthem, right there on the contestant-for-the-Quasimodo-look-a-like-contest´s nose.

Love is not blind. You would do well to remember that just because you do not want to be aware of a person´s faults, does not mean they´re not there.

Shutting your eyes to a person´s defects is the worse disservice you can do them. We are all human, and we all posses those fine little quirks that separate us from Vulcans.

In looking for your ideal partner, you should not think of a one-sided fantasy, all good, no bad. Instead, think which defects you can live with, and which are completely out of the question. Be honest with yourself, no matter how small and petty you think you´re being. I can´t stand hairy backs. Neither can I stand liars. These are both things I know I can´t live with.

If you do this, you will be able to stare that mountain of a mole right in the nose and answer, “Yes, I see it. Isn´t it adorable?”

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

It´s so simple, it gets complicated

Remember those fatefull words to that song? "I can´t help falling in love with you"? It´s no wonder so many relationships fail if we´ve been hearing this and other lies all our lives. Yes, lies, mentiras, Lügen. In a word, crap.

You may not be able to help finding somebody attractive. But "love at first sight" turns into "divorce in six months" if you expect a relationship to grow and mature based only on physical attraction.

And that´s why you need a plan. Thinking and willing yourself to love for ever, BEFORE you have a partner, makes you think more seriously about what kind of person you will want by your side for so long. Do you really think that you will be able to stand the little quirks you gloss over today, 10 years from now? No, really. The high pitched laugh, the snoring, the hairy legs (hers), the hairy back (his)... Feelings are not enough to get you through PMS once a month for years to come. Believe me.

So plan to win. In posts to come we´ll get into the how. Step by step.

Keep on reading and you´ll be able to sing "I can help falling out of love with you."

Friday, September 4, 2009

If you are so succesful, why are you still single?

Before you burn me in effigy, let me say that I don´t think single people are failures. What I am saying is that there are too many succesful people wanting a relationship that works, and not finding it.

Why is that? We are talking about mature, intelligent, independent people who have had one miserable relationship after the other. Why can´t they carry their success on to their personal lives?

Because they probably don´t use the same strategies to finding and keeping a partner that they use in other areas. It seems as though people just shut off their sound judgement and turn into a bunch of "feelings" with no impulse control. They seem to think that only feelings matter in love.

Well, that´s a warm pile of garbage. If the brain doesn´t follow the heart, the heart will not be enough.