Last time, this column was about my friend Rob’s new romance. After it ran, a concerned reader sent this tweet:
“Yr column shows a complete lack of faith n yr friend’s ability 2 fnd tru happiness, based on nothing bt his entire dating history. Dnt u believe in luv?”
I was shocked. I had no idea Rob Twittered.
I do believe in love. What I believe is that it falls into two categories — the kind that’s guaranteed to last forever and “not so much.” The second type may look like this:
1. Puppy Love: This may be defined as any romance involving two people who think the fact that they have the same music on their iPod means they’ll “like totally, totally be together forever.” Usually, this is limited to the younger than 15-year-old set. I recall my daughter, Becky, then 14, and I having this conversation:
Becky: I’m so upset. Jeremy and I broke up.
Me: (practised at suppressing comments like “Whoohoo!” or “Who’s Jeremy?”) Oh?
Becky: Now Devon’s asked me out. I said I’m just not ready.
Me: You need time to heal … maybe until you’re 40 …
Becky: I said maybe next weekend.
The reason older, more mature people don’t engage in the revolving door romance of youth is obvious. We can’t remember that many new names.
2. Beach Vacation Fever. When the weather’s hot, romance sizzles. Scientists claim it’s about smell; we can detect the scent of desire on each other. But not through a parka. Vacation romance, however, is like a sombrero. It’s exotic, it’s colourful, you have to have it, but bring it home and you’ll have no idea what to do with it.
3. Relationships based entirely on looks. No good can come of this. We all know it. We all plan to avoid it. Right after we’ve dated a personal trainer.
4. Dating the wrong person. This is the relationship that’s destined to be mad, passionate and blessedly short-lived. Everybody knows it. Except, of course, the two people involved. It’s the kind of romance that leaves you thinking either, “Gosh, that was fun.” Or “What the heck was I thinking?” Or both.
We all hope to find a love that lasts. In the meantime, the good thing about a “not forever” love is that it’s … well, not forever. Which means there’s only one way to handle it. Enjoy it entirely.