ValentineNothing hurts like unrequited love. When I was a youngster, still at school, I had a crush on a girl called Sally. A very distant crush: I didn't know her well but I saw her every day as she walked past my form room to reach hers. She had curly hair and a sulky face. I'm a sucker for sulky girls who are hard to please; if you want to win my heart, pouting and carrying on make a sure route.
I used to write poems about Sally, whom I considered my secret love. I had an entire drama going on that no one else knew about and certainly no one else would have cared about.
I have a problem, a phobia, a desire to avoid confrontation and embarrassment. (I don't suffer from it so much when I'm anonymous, in case you were wondering how I could manage to so actively seek it -- and junior Freuds out there, yes, okay, I probably am making up for it in the cyberworld but so what? Isn't that what the cyberworld is for? Like many people, I'm freer online. I don't ever really think about why because I am confident it's a good thing, all in all.)
Even then I had it, although perhaps it wasn't so bad. Certainly, I didn't make a habit of asking girls out. Not that I didn't think they should be pleased to have me. I did, and I still do.
She said no, of course. Worse, she didn't say anything. She shook her head and ran away. I stopped writing the poems. I was hurt but that wasn't the thing. The thing was, I had ruined my own secret thing. I couldn't any longer fantasise about Sally. I had sold my secret out for the hope of a date and I realised, only after it was gone, that it was worth more in itself.
What use is a dream if you need someone else to make it come true? It is only any use as a dream. Eventually, you have to learn to stop empowering people who care less about you than you want them to by allowing them to shatter your dreams.
But I still write poems about Sally. She's just changed faces, changed names, changed bodies, but the spirit's the same.