Friday, June 19, 2009

advertising

It's possible that no one will like me after this post. But I have to take that risk. So listen up, because I'm going to say this as kindly as I know how:

A significant other is MOST LIKELY not going to apparate out of thin air. Or out of sheer desire to have one. Or out of tears shed. Or out of years waited. Or out of elaborate recipe combining any number of the following ingredients: luck, fate, dreamlife, prophecies or fortune cookies.

Like most milestones in life - high school graduation, driver's licences, university degrees, home ownership, building a family - finding a spouse takes some work. It should be considered a goal. YES, I SAID A GOAL. It should be preceded by preparation, fueled by vision, and celebrated with gallantry.

"But that sounds like so much work... I'm just looking for someone who will love me for me, someone I don't have to alter myself for, someone who I can spend the rest of my life with."

Oh, OK, young teenager with no driving experience, no driver's ed certification, no comprehension of the rules of the road: here's a licence. Just because you want one. Go wild.

I work at an advertising agency and, let me tell you, advertising is a science unto itself. And it works. It's the subtle art of revealing to a potential customer their own desire for a product or service.

"Don't you want this toothpaste?" advertising asks. "It tastes great and it fights cavities!"
"Hey... I do want that toothpaste. I want a great tasting, cavity fighting toothpaste!" customer responds. Boom. A sale.

Here's where the logic in many young (and old!) adults breaks down (and, sadly, the breakdown is even more obvious in the church where we're more liable to make the spouse-search entirely dependent on D-E-S-T-I-N-Y- which often translates into S-U-P-E-R-S-T-I-T-I-O-N): "I'm looking for a gorgeous/handsome spouse [enter various dimensions and attributes here] with a steady job, a kind heart, money, an education, a vision for their life, the respect of their peers, a future on their horizon, and a bounce in their step. I, however, am an unkempt, over/underweight individual, with no particular interest in personal higiene, decorum, or, God forbid, SEXINESS, a terrible case of finding the niche I should be in, no concept of who I want to be in 3, 5, or, God forbid, 10 YEARS, a vague hunch at where I'm going in life, few friends who mostly pity me, and a horrible chip on my shoulder from being single for so long."

Before you take this personally (my first question would be: what would make you take it personally?), let me assure you that I, again, most likely, do not have you in mind. Unless you are any boy I dated in my early 20s. Then there is a very good possibility that I am referencing you.

I don't like cutting down a tree without planing one in its place (no carbon footprint!) and since I've done some clear cutting today, let me leave you with advertising tips:
  • Gentlemen: groom yourselves. You don't see supermodels walking around with T-shirts that read "Klingons Do It With Honour" for a reason. Pick a reliable friend and go through your wardrobe. Ask your female friends which area(s) of your body require less hair. Get healthy. Get some funds. And, with those funds, ask a lady out for a coffee.
  • Ladies: soften up. Like attracts like, so if you're looking for The Ideal Guy to sweep you off your feet it won't kill you to become what men find ideal. When men approach you, take a tip from Arabella:
    Favours to none, to all she smiles extends;
    Oft she rejects, but never once offends.
    You can turn down a guy without castrating him. And, if he has a heart of gold but lacks the body of Brad Pitt, at least attempt a coffee with him.
If you make no effort, be prepared to be met with no effort. If it's important enough to cost you sleep and peace, perhaps you should stop meditating on the gift of singleness and wake up to the fact that marriage MEANS something to you, you earnestly DESIRE it, therefore it is a GOAL of yours and run after it as if it is!

Dear Abby out.

Oh, I am out of breath in this fond chase.
The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace.
Happy is Hermia, wheresoe'er she lies,
For she hath bless├Ęd and attractive eyes.
How came her eyes so bright? Not with salt tears.
If so, my eyes are oftener washed than hers.
No, no, I am as ugly as a bear,
For beasts that meet me run away for fear.
- Helena, "A Midsummer Night's Dream"





8 comments:

Andrew G said...

WELL DONE, LA!!

I COMPLETELY AGREE

Megan said...

Thank you for this. It is very true and takes intentionality and some time, as does everything worth doing/having/being.

Anonymous said...

Nice work chica!

beth said...

hahahahahahaaa....funny & true!

nice one.

Anonymous said...

This blog leaves me questioning what we teach on our youth and young adult encounters. I don't really like it.

Anonymous said...

"Ask your female friends which area(s) of your body require less hair." i am a male of the hairier verity and this actually offends
me i have strangle with getting teased and insulted about the amount of hair i have since i puberty. it has taken me years to accept that God didn't make a mistake when he made me hairy.

Anonymous said...

Sarah,

I'm worried that articles like this will create a group of "perfectly" weighted singles, trying to practice the not so subtle art of advertising by deceiving themselves and others into thinking that if they can weigh in, shave in all the right places, and look sexy, their insecurities will disappear.

Anonymous said...

there are few people out there that might read a post like this and find it beneficial. the rest will likely take it through their very broken filter and find ungodly beliefs re-enforced, and bad habits justified.

don't get me wrong, i totally see where you are coming from. if you want to attract a well bred man or women, you probably should have similar standards for your own life. it is just too simple...and it is an angle that (as a christian) can be destructive if it is not delivered with more substance. people who are overly self aware and driven to 'perfect' themselves physically (whatever that means) often end up working toward world standards of beauty which are unrealistic, and outside of Gods unique design for us.

Yes, we need to take care of ourselves. I don't think we need to do it striving to find our ideal in a mate. It should be done out of honour for our creator.

I have made a choice to leave the whole 'finding a mate' ball in God's court (christianeeze...so what). I will keep up my end of the bargain to the best of my ability. I will NOT allow jealousy and comparison take ground as motivators in my life. I am me, and that is okay...hopefully one day someone else will think so too;)