Sunday, July 13, 2014

Differing Opinions

For those of you unfamiliar with me in my personal life, I have a strong sense of skepticism with regards to a number of things.  When I was in high school (grade 10 or 11, it was 1998), we were given an assignment to write in detail about three different science articles. My dad took me to Chapters (which was very new then), to grab a couple of magazines, and among them was a copy of the Skeptical Inquirer with Harry Houdini on the cover.  "A magician on the cover of a science magazine?" I thought.

I still have it.
I'd never really read anything like it before.  It's not in the shape it once was (for one, the article on Spontaneous Human Combustion has been torn out so I could hand it in with my paper*), but it's still really special to me.  Throughout the rest of high school, it was almost a religious fervor; Skepticism with a capital S.  That calmed down over time.  It introduced me to a way of thinking to which I keep returning, and recently my interest and convictions are quite strong**.

I told you that story, so I could tell you this one.

I'm experiencing a fair bit of cognitive dissonance lately.  Despite the above, I still hold out hope on one silly notion: the idea that there is one single person out there for me, and I just haven't met them yet.  As though I'm just sitting here, believing all the baloney I was ever fed about the "it'll happen when you least expect it," or "I know he's out there for you, and he's going to be awesome."  It can be comforting, but ya'll don't know that shit any more than I do.

As with any number of us, I turn into a moron when thinking about love.  This has probably done more damage on me than I'd like to admit.  In numerous instances, I'm sure I've not given someone a proper chance at dating me, and - on at least one occasion so far, I've given up on a relationship too soon. I'm constantly plagued with this: how can I know anything about my ideal partner, when I don't know what my life is supposed to look like?  The inverse could be true as well.  How do I build a life when I'm not sure what kind of a mess**** they're bringing to the table?

I know, in my brain of brains, that you don't need to believe in love as some magical woo-woo thing in order to experience it, I just don't think my heart of hearts knows it.  I had a fantastic conversation***** with a good friend the other day, and she told me (for the 5th or 6th time), that she didn't believe there was only one person for everyone.  She said this despite having a delightful husband, who is perfect for her.  I briefly wondered to myself (drunk, remember), if he would feel hurt to hear her say this, and then I remembered that he's as logical and no nonsense as she is.  A good match.

And those are two nice, warm people.  Imagine two calculating scientists together.  Is there an awkward moment during post-coital bliss, staring into each others eyes, holding each others faces, and they realize their souls have fully merged.  This, in spite of the fact they originally bonded over the dismissal of the idea of a soul, let alone one soul merging with another.

They're not allowed to be happy. Those bastards.

As mentioned, this way of thinking does me a disservice.  Being a veteran of the online dating world certainly doesn't help with the cynicism.  I've grown really tired of all forms of online dating, but I can't seem to give it up.  I go out and do activities, and all my friends are on the lookout for suitable gentlemen, but I'm just getting no bites that way. I'm still having conversations on the sites, but there majority of the messages are all "hi how r u" type things.  It's hard not to picture a guy loading the phrase "hi how r u" into a gatling gun and firing at everything on the site with a vagina, like resumes when you're looking for retail work.

"Um, dad said to drop off a resume here because I have poor taste?"

*the second article I'd written about was the rapidly declining numbers of the Orange Roughy, a deep sea fish that, since it's a deep sea fish, takes over 20 years reach sexual maturity.  The result of this is that a lot of them aren't having wee little roughians quickly enough to satiate the demand of human yuppies.  It's still pretty close to my heart.  I don't remember the third article.
**people responsible for this include, but are not limited to: Susan J. Blackmore, A.R. Wallace, Brian Cox, Neil Peart, Stephen Fry, Charlie Brooker, Penn & Teller, James Randi, Stephen Hawking (did you know he's friends with Jimmy Carr?), Ray Hyman...the list goes on.
***it's very comforting, but y'all don't know that shit.
****educated guess that he'll have some sort of neurotic tendencies.
*****I was so stinkin' drunk.

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