Any one remotely observant has heard about or had opportunity to notice the ‘Twilight’ phenomena. Women young and old are veritably obsessed with the series. It may come as a surprise to some, but I actually understand this. I understand losing oneself in the fictional worlds encased within the pages of books. Throughout my life, I’ve spent countless hours in the imaginary worlds of Orson Scott Card, C.S. Lewis, Richard Adams, J.R.R. Tolkien....among many others. As a child, my parents would punish me by not allowing me to sit in my room and read because, given my choice, that’s where I would be.
There did however, come a point where I realized that I was trading in experiences and opportunities in the real world for those in my fictional ones. My fictional worlds were an escape; places that were exciting and adventurous but, always, much, much safer and insular for a shy and insecure child than the real world.
As a teenager, I learned to reach outside my shell. I continued to enjoy books, but forced myself to take an active part in the world around me. What a plethora of opportunities there are to engage in and to grow from in the world. There is a wealth of knowledge to be found in books, but that knowledge cannot take the place of the kind of learning that comes from life experience. One cannot truly experience life, its highs or its lows, through the pages of a book and it is only through truly experiencing life that one hones character and is able to develop empathy and integrity. We can learn about the kind of person we’d like to become in a book, but we can never develop great qualities without first living and experiencing them.
Let’s return to ‘Twilight’ for a moment...women are obsessed with vampires because they are the ultimate dark knight. They come, not only to sweep you off your feet and take you away from the mundane trivialities of day to day life, but from life itself and all the pesky little inconveniences that mortality entails.
The tragedy is that women spend their time daydreaming about being rescued from life instead of grabbing onto it, immersing themselves in it and living it. Life is messy. It isn’t the picture perfect experience found in romance books. No matter how brave or handsome the knight in shining armor, at the end of the day, there will still be a house to clean, jobs to do, kids to feed, noses to wipe....this is just life. Instead of cherishing the moments of it, regardless how seemingly small and inconsequential, women abnegate and renounce it. They mourn and revile their common, mundane existences while missing irreplaceable and integral opportunities for growth.
Ultimately, there never was a perfect knight in shining armor...not really, because at the end of the day, our knight was just a man; a human being, equipped with the prerequisite agglomeration of human faults and weaknesses. He never could have saved us because he would have had to save us from ourselves and from inescapable aspects of human existence. Thus, women have abandoned their human knights for mythical, immortal beings.
But there are no vampires. There is only this one life that we have and all the messy inconveniences that come with it...because life is messy. It’s messy and difficult but it’s also wonderful and beautiful. We can waste life pining for things we’ll never have; things that never have, can or will exist, or we can jump head first into it and make the most of it....the most of ourselves.
What a shallow and ego-centric notion this whole knight/vampire business is to begin with; imagine wasting life wishing for someone to save you; to take responsibility for your happiness, when you could actually be out there doing something for someone else. You could be doing your best to help others instead of fruitlessly pining for something that will never happen. It is no one’s responsibility to take upon them the insurmountable task of saving us from ourselves. Happiness and contentment are things that are found within and not something that we can gain from others.
Once again, no matter how dashing, brave, noble and wonderful, the knight in shining armor will always fall short. This is how entitled; how detached from logic and reality women have become. If our knight in shining armor can no longer make the cut, what chance does the average, decent guy stand? Women are so immersed in what they want; the guaranteed perfect happy ending they are convinced they are owed, but they place no focus on what they are bringing to the table....which increasingly is little more than a myriad of impossible expectations.
As much as I love my fictional, literary worlds where I engage in epic battles against the powers of darkness, overcome incredible odds and have assisted in saving the world on several occasions....in real life, I can actually make a difference. I can fight against evils in the world, by speaking out against them, by choosing and defending right and by living a good and moral existence. I may never be a heroine that saves the world, but I can strive to be a great wife and mother, devoting my time to my family and in seeking to aid and uplift those around me. I may not be able to defeat terrible villains but I can do my small bit to defeat hunger, sadness and hopelessness in the downtrodden, defeated and destitute that I come in contact with. And, while I will never be spirited away by a dark and handsome vampire and imbued with immortality and eternal youth, I can have a real relationship with a decent man who I can love and who loves me back. While it may not be the great and fantastic voyage found within the fictional worlds of books…it is real; it is the voyage of life and it is infinitely more rewarding than any that can be found in a book.
Permanent Affirmative Action
5 hours ago