“I’ve tried every approach to living. I’ve tried it all… I’ve done everything in my life that I wanna do except just give and feel love for my living.” – John Mayer
I had a few too many adult beverages last Sunday. The sun was just beginning to die over Lake Michigan when I began to have a heated argument with a friend who had recently gotten his heart broken. On this day, he had me beat by about five Michelob Ultras and he could not for the life of him stop telling me and the rest of our group that love wasn’t real. And for a minute in my dazed state, I agreed with him. I’ve loved and I’ve lost so many times over now that I couldn’t count it on my fingers and toes. Love, as the Wedding Singer Robbie Hart will tell you, stinks. Love fucking sucks.
But I came to out of that drunken stupor right as the sun was setting and metaphorically slapped my friend with some knowledge. Love is very real. It can be fleeting, but it’s real.
I’ll let you in on a little secret: no one really ever wants to “go out.” It’s a hassle. A strain. A pain in the ass to get dressed up and pretend that you enjoy mingling with people you only know on a very superficial level.
Anyone who isn’t in a monogamous relationship goes out on a Friday night with one thing on their mind – love. We’re all looking for it. Most single people you talk to won’t admit that but it’s the truth. You can say that you just want to go out with your friends and not think for a few hours, but deep down we all know if the opportunity for a meaningful relationship presented itself you would jump at the chance. We all would.
Why were we put here on Planet Earth? Well, I believe it was to find love. We’re all in hot pursuit of L-O-V-E. Many of you have already found love. Some of you think you’ve found love. But the majority of us are all walking around with a blindfold covering our eyes hoping that we’ll bump into someone.
A lot of people claim that they aren’t looking for a relationship. And that’s true at a certain age. They may not be looking for someone at the time of that statement, but eventually, everyone gets sick of the Friday-night-get-dressed-and-go-out game. We’ve all talked that talk. “I wouldn’t want a girlfriend even if I could get one.” At 21, 22, 23 – hell, at 25 – I’ve found myself saying that exact phrase.
Being single is a game that we all willingly play because, eventually, we want it to end. And our brains all tell us at a certain point that we can no longer play that game. We just don’t know when that’s going to be. Some of us are told at 18, some of us are told at 40. But we’re all told. At some point, we all get fed up with playing the children’s game and just want a partner. Someone to love.
Nobody bats one thousand percent. Not in baseball and certainly not in the partner-for-life department. Think about all of the drunken Friday nights you’ve put together since you were able to get into a bar, nightclub, or house party that was willing to serve you alcohol. What’s your success rate look like? Less than five percent? I’d bet mine is less than that 5% I just quoted you. And I don’t mean success as some blanket term for bringing a girl home to have sex with. I mean how many people have you met on a Friday night out that you actually care about? That you fell in love with? In my time going out on a Friday or Saturday night? I’d put that number at 1%. That’s how many people I’ve fallen in love with doing this shit for seven or eight years.
There isn’t a person alive who wants to be single forever. It just isn’t how we were hardwired.
You may not want something serious this coming Friday night but everyone, at the very least, is looking for a warm body to sleep next to. They want to keep the other side of the bed from freezing over. We want someone to wake up to. We want companionship. And how can you blame someone for wanting to get close to another human being?
Our brains are bound in such a way that kissing, touching, fucking-it just feels right. If aliens were to ever touch down on this planet and ask me that formidable, mother-of-all existential questions – “why are you here?”– I’d know exactly what I would say. I was put here to find (and give) love.
Is this what you wanted to read about on a Thursday night headed into Easter weekend with your friends and family? Probably not. I didn’t feel like getting this deep, this corny, this vulnerable on a rainy day with a holiday coming down the pipe. Looking for love is a game that I’ve lost many times over. But I’ll continue the search and so should you. Someday, we’ll get there. Someday we won’t have the play the game anymore. Someday. .
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