Sunday, April 23, 2006

The Fly On The Wall Presents...

the fly on the wall presents...

entry 4: april 22, 2006

it’s deeper than espresso

on one cooler than usual los angeles afternoon, i was sipping on my usual nonfatextrahotwithwhippeppermintmocha (red sprinkles optional). as i was waiting for the ‘extrahot’ part of my afternoon delight to abate, i came across this quote on my grande cup:

    The Way I See It #76

    The irony of commitment is that it’s deeply liberating – in work, in play, in love. The act frees you from the tyranny of your internal critic, from the fear that likes to dress itself up and parade around as rational hesitation. To commit is to remove your head as the barrier to your life.

      --Anne Morriss
      Starbucks customer from New York City. She describes herself as an “organization builder, restless American citizen, optimist.”

i looked around to see if anyone else had heard it. starbucks had just dropped a bomb on this just barely turned 23-year-old.

commitment = freedom? whoa, whoa, whoa. maybe anne morriss had had one too many mochachocalattes when she decided to fill out this particular comment card. i mean, the emphasis we put on “commitment” in this culture is too overwhelming to ignore, or even argue.

consider the statements commonly used with said word:

this is a VERY big commitment

i have a fear of commitment

commit and DIE

ok, the last one i embellished a tad. but you can just feel the weight of negativity attached to this word, like velcro on hair. it hurts. and it is something that begins to haunt us as early as our teens.

relationships and dating have evolved (or devolved, rather) in the past few decades. we could point the fingers at the conservativeness of the 40s, the baby boom of the 50s, the feminist movement of the 60s, oil crisis of the 70s or michael jackson’s thriller album of the 80s. but in the business of pop* dating in the 90s, we made the full transformation from being courting clients to player presidents.

not that there weren’t the exception-al ones who still believed in ‘true love’ and monogamy (but that’s for another time and cyberspace).

how do i know? helloooo, i was a teen in the 90s. i saw eighth graders exchange partners like pokémon cards**.

as i got older, i realized that although it was “cool” to have a boyfriend, i also observed that that commitment was often short-lived. a speedway of hormone driven youngsters (ages ranging from 13-33) changing lanes and changing minds before you can say, check, please!

is this all in the name of sexual liberation and emotional freedom? are we really keeping our options open to otherwise avoid being tied down? or are these statements just as ms. morriss says, a dolled up rationale for truly irrational hesitation...

in some cases, the resistance to commit stems from a deeper fear known only to that individual.

but HOLD ON a sec people, what about the other 99% (give or take)? why can we all but say the word when involved with someone we REALLY like? hey, i admit, i am not innocent of pulling the commitmentphobe card once or twice in the past. but i also pulled the i’mjustsobusy card and the iheardaboutyou card. but that’s all they were, cards out of a deck of excuses that would leave an open space for the right person to fill.

the PROBLEM lies in the player that pulls the commitmentphobe card, but refuses to end the game. they want it all but...that. they like you but they’re not ready for...that. and the absence of that, is what keeps us in an emotional limbo, unable to move in either direction (either into or completely out of the relationship).

is this commitment theory really deeper than espresso, or is my cup simply a bearer of cold milk?

i think back to the times when i chose to commit myself to something (move to LA, pursue writing, get paid practically nothing while living in LA and writing) or someone (one serious sweetheart in high school). yeah, maybe ms. morriss has got a point. because if we lay the right cards out on the table, you never know, we just might win.

*the word “pop” here is open to interpretation

**pokewhat? also see:

dating ‘drobe no-no of the decade: stiletto, pumps! (come on! you’re not beyoncé and he’s not flying you to st. tropez. it’s no fun treading astroturf in heels. four!)


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