For the singletons of the cinema-going community, after two hours of a gooey chick-flick you can’t help but wonder where on earth all the Mr Darcys are hiding. They create an unrealistic hope of one day finding a man who will overcome the trials and tribulations of social stigmas/health problems/annoying friends/commitment issues, to make an impromptu public declaration of his love for you and sweep you off into the sunset in a shiny convertible. Sadly, off the film sets, that’s not quite how things happen. These days you’re lucky if you get a poorly written text asking you out for a quick bite at Burger King ‘cause he’s got some vouchers to use up.
After stepping foot into a film bursting with over the top, unrequited, flower strewn love, the real world has a lot to live up to. So when it feels like the Heathcliffs of the world are never going to find their way off the moors and into your neck of the woods, it’s hard not to think ‘what am I doing wrong? Why can’t I find that perfect person?’ However in reality, this warped idea of a ‘perfect’ man may not really exist. Maybe a perfect man isn’t a rich, fun-loving guy with a whiter than white Hollywood smile who’ll take you skiing at the weekends. Maybe he’s an average guy with stains down his t-shirt who prefers going to the pub on a Saturday night.
Meanwhile for those in a relationship, the cinematic whirlwind of rom-coms plastered all over Blockbuster make it all too tempting to compare them to your own relationship. You start to wonder why your partner doesn’t wake you up with bunches of flowers everyday or give up watching the football with his mates to watch the sun set on a deserted beach with you. But the simple fact is that the superficial relationships you see in films, are exactly that. Superficial. They magnify the sweet, romantic parts of being in a relationship, and obliterate the day to day normality of life as a couple. But it’s unfair of us to expect men to recreate the unrealistic and often over the top gestures you see in your average rom-com, when normally bringing you a cup of tea in the morning is as close to a romantic gesture as you’re going to get. But maybe we should be happy with that, because in reality that’s what romance is, when someone remembers you like one sugar, and not two.
Next time you’re out and about, hoping for that perfect movie moment when a tall, dark, handsome stranger offers to buy you a drink, remember not to overlook that guy sat at the bar with a pint and a packet of pork scratchings in hand. Forget the idea of beautiful, romantic perfection you see on the big screen and try to find the real perfection that might be right in front of you.