It’s hard to be single this time of year. I went to Target on Sunday, which is usually my favorite activity. But my standard bliss was ruined by a million happy couples, holding hands in the cereal aisle and discussing the virtues of Crispex versus Wheatabix; romantically deciding to take up the whole aisle with their love. And there I am, just buying maple and brown sugar oatmeal for one, no discussion needed.
It seems like everyone has someone this time of year: Kim has Kanye; Kate Middleton has her baby; even the inflatable Santa emerging from and disappearing into the inflatable Airstream Trailer in front of my neighbor’s house has an inflatable Rudolph who sits in the front of the trailer. And then there’s just me, walking around with a hat rigged so that I am always standing under mistletoe, just in case.
Which is why the story about the Long Islander who shot his girlfriend in the back over her inability to believe in the Zombie Apocalypse as much as he believes in it hits me especially hard. Such a tragedy. All the good ones are either gay or taken. Some people might say that committing a violent crime against your significant other over something as purely hypothetical as the Zombie Apocalypse is insane. Like, literally batshit crazy. Those people are probably happily married. The rest of us can’t afford to be so picky.
Perhaps you guys remember a little musical by a couple of guys named Mr. Rodgers and Mr. Hammerstein, called Carousel. Some people think that musical is a gorgeous, lyrical glorification of domestic violence, saying Billy Bigelow’s slap “felt like a kiss” because Julie loved him so much. Some people think that is super fucked up, especially when he dies (Spoilers?) and comes back as a ghost specifically to abuse their daughter and then disappear into the clouds during a choral arrangement of the most beautiful song ever. Those people probably aren’t afraid of dying childless and alone.
Relationships are about compromise. If your partner has an insane apocalyptic paranoia, or wants to eat crackers in bed, or has the need to ghost-hit, you have to let him be free to feel those things. Don’t try to stifle who he is inside, even if that person is a dangerous, violent potential murderer with an insane distrust of the US Military’s activity.