Well, I’m pretty sure I know the answer.
Ever since Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire? I’ve had a morbid fascination with dating shows. It’s kind of like the sick compulsion to eavesdrop on a couple having a fight at the next table in a restaurant, or the glee small children have when they can watch a sibling getting in trouble, except there are no innocent victims because everyone involved actually consented to going on a reality show, for crying out loud.
Anyway, the latest round got off to a rousing start last night. (I do laundry in front of pulp TV. When I’m not solving differential equations and stuff.) What’s peculiar about the show is that the “Bachelorette” in question was, a few short months ago, proclaiming her undying love for The Bachelor Jason (himself a reject from an earlier session of The B’ette, DeAnna, who was kicked to the curb by Brad … it’s like a daisy chain of moronic exhibitionists) and yet now proclaims herself ready for true love (plausible enough) and expecting to find it on TV.
The 30 men competing, for their part, signed up without even knowing who the lady in question would be. So they’re coming on this show, purporting to want to marry at the end of it, when they don’t even know who their prospective bride is.
I’ve long thought that the Harlequin-ization of our culture of relationships, in which The One will send electricity sizzling through you and provide you with emotional, sexual, intellectual, social and psychological satisfaction forever and ever, or else he’s not The One, is really harmful. Arranged marriages don’t strike me as that great either, but given the two extremes, I’d say a considered attempt to match yourself with someone of a compatible background, with shared values and goals and beliefs who wants a similar lifestyle, is more likely to lead to happiness than letting your hormones decide for you in a matter of days. Certainly you’re more likely to find lasting happiness with a kind and good person who shares the above, whom you grow to love profoundly, than with someone who has all the right pheromones but has a divergent outlook on life.
So is it kind of nice, that there are people out there willing to say “I want a long-term relationship, and finding someone who wants what I do is my goal” when they don’t even know what the other guy/girl will look like? Or are these just a bunch of fame-hounds looking for booze-fuelled hot tub action?
On second thought, don’t answer that.
Andrea adds: Glad you added that last line, Rebecca. No answer from me then.
Brigitte wonders: You fuel your hot tub with booze?by