Saturday, March 12, 2011

Once Upon a Time...

 In a faraway land, there lived a romantic young maiden who disliked happy endings. 

She abhorred them to such degree in fact, that whenever she read a book or watched a movie, she prayed earnestly for the death of the heroine. Her friends scoffed at this candid confession. To their minds, death and torment do not equivocate romance. But the taunted maiden would not give way to their persuadings. One day, as she sat savoring the scene of a rejected suitor, her adversaries threw open the door, seized the book from her hands, and dragged her away to a distant castle, where they locked her up in a tower and left her to rot in misery and utter wretchedness. There she spent many years, dreaming of freedom and the chance of returning to ordinary life. But it never came, and she died, tortured and alone, until her skeleton turned to dust and was remembered no more. The End

WARNING: This post may contain unsettling content. Author is not liable for readers' reactions including, but not limited to, nausea, post traumatic shock, psychological damage, and post-requisite depression. Author's views not subject to debate. :)

So the time has come to blog about my second life rule. The first, you'll remember, applied to PDA-ing.This next one has to do with that infernal, six-word phrase "and they lived happily ever after." 

Happily ever after. What does that even mean exactly? I've never been able to figure it out. It's not like anyone goes on being happy all the time...sometimes you actually get--"angry!" :)

Just look at Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy. They fought like cats and dogs before getting married, but now that they've exchanged vows suddenly they live "happily ever after?" Give me a break!  The reason happiness is so esteemed and valued is because we all appreciate what it's like to be mad/distrought.

But unrealism aside, happy endings are plain boring. It's just him and her gazing into each others eyes and professing a bunch of flowery "I love yous" as they ride off into the sunset. Is that really the best we can do?
How 'bout endings that give you something to chew on? The kind that, once you've finished the last chapter, make your head swim with the endless "what ifs." 
It's the almost-but-not-quite aspect of tragedies that  in my opinion, makes them so appealing. That and the fact that I like an excuse to cry now and again. :) lol
Psychoanalysis would say that my 98% perfect childhood has created a liking for not-so-perfect endings. Call it a case of one too many Disney princess movies. No, no, no! If one of the key characters isn't dead before the credits scroll, it's not a good movie/book. I'll tell you what. Cinderella should've died in a pumpkin-carriage wreck, Sleeping Beauty should've never awakened, and Ariel should've remained a mermaid. That's romantic! Spending a lifetime pining for happiness just beyond one's reach.
Now before I continue any further, I will say that I DON'T enjoy sad-ending stories in real life. Of course, I want myself and everyone I know to be happy. But if we're talking  fiction, then hey someone might as well spend the rest of eternity in the Bastille. :) 
I know. Heartless. But isn't that what writers are supposed to be? I mean, how else do they become great? Think of the Bronte sisters and Victor Hugo. All of their stories are pretty tragic.  And yet they are some of the most beloved literary figures of all time.
Nope. In my humble opinion, happy endings should be tolerated only in small dosages. Leave the castles and glorious sunsets where they belong--in the clouds--and pass the box of kleenex my way. :)

So...that's that.
Is everyone okay? *wink*

P.S. Progress report: was able to run 4.5 miles on Friday. Let's see if I can keep that up this week. *fingers crossed*


Sarah said...

Hmmm... I'm not sure if I agree or disagree. I LOVE dramatic and heart-wrenching scenes that make me burst into a flood of tears but ultimately, a good movie or book has to end with a wedding or a baby being born. The girl always has to get the guy. Period. They don't necessarily have to be happy for ever after, but at least happy for a year or two. ;-)

Love ya, Talia! Your posts make my day. =D

Cynthia said...

Hi Talia,
Sarah Pena sent me to your blog, and I agree with you wholeheartedly on this subject! I used to read "A Little Princess" over and over, hoping the happy ending would never come. The misery and heroism of the central part of the book was always so much more romantic!

Thanks for sharing.

Talia said...

"A Little Princess" is one of my favorite books! And you're right--the unexpected ending makes it SO much more meaningful. You must have been disappointed by the 1995 movie with Liesel Matthews, then eh? :) I'm actually undecided on that one. Even though it ends on a good note, you're still smarting from the previous scene. "Papa, please!" *sniff* *sniff* I'll cry just thinking about it. hehehe