February 5th, 2007


Failing at romance is a pattern I know well. . .

MJD: So, for Valentine's Day, I'm apparently going the the ballet.
Tina: Does she know you hate ballet?
M: I don't hate ballet. I hated Dracula. I don't mind the classical stuff, and can even get excited about it. I don't necessarly get it, but there's good music and nifty things going on. I just can't wrap my head around the more modern styles at all. They make me feel stupid because I don't get them "conceptually," whatever that means.
T: Why don't you do something you'll both like?
M: Because that's not what Valentine's Day is about. It's about guys doing things they don't want to do just because women think it's romantic. I have a feeling that the most romantic things in life are things that no man enjoys.
T: *suddenly can't stop laughing*
Yes, it's true: the ballet is in my future.

I admit, I don't mind. I won't lie and pretend to be excited about it (though I might actually get excited about an excuse to put on a suit and have a pretty lady on my arm), but I'll sit through it and find a way to make it work for me.

Honestly, if it hadn't been presented to me before I caught wind of the show, I'd have probably offered to take her, anyway: I've been scanning the ballet schedule off and on for a couple of months trying to find something I might be able to work with. This is probably because my idea of romance is "stuff I don't like to do." Thus, when I find something I don't want to do, my first thought is often, "Hey, that'd be a great date!"

This could be why buying flowers doesn't seem "romantic" to me. . . I like to buy flowers for people. It's fun, and often unexpected. But it's not romantic in my head. But going to the ballet is. I understand, though, that there are certain actions that women find "romantic", and I try and do those actions from time to time.

Finding romance in stuff I like to do is hard. Collapse )

Now, flirting. . . that's a whole other story for some other time. . .

Huizinga, play, and criteria for it.

Huizinga mentions four critera of play, and generally my definitions of the same word (as well as "game" and a few others) follow from this:

  1. Play is free and voluntary. Play is never forced on a person. It is extremely important that we participate in play of our own free will, though we need to also remember the part of the straight-man, who does not participate in play, but still serves a vital role.

  2. Play is not ordinary. It is something separate from a normal or "real" state of being. Importantly, this does not mean that it is in any way inferior to being "serious". In fact, Huizinga shows that play often is extremely serious.

  3. Play is limited and secluded. It is separated out temporally and locativly and often does not last long or exceed a defined space. States of play will invariably come to an end, exiting their time and the space they are in. There is a certain moment in which play always stops, but it is always remembered. This is a strange thing about play: it is treasured, and thus becomes repeatable, and higher forms of play show this repetition often.

  4. Play is constrained by rules, and proceeds in an orderly manner. These rules may be broken, and the treason is often quickly forgotten. The parent who scolds a playing child, though, will not be quickly forgotten, for they break the world of play wide open, destroying it. Huizinga calls these people "spoil-sports", and insists that they are often dealt with harshly.

Definition of terms: always so darned important. Sometimes, I forget that people don't understand things the way I do.
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    "Something So Feminine About a Mandolin", -JB
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