Last night I drank wine and watched On The Waterfront. I’d never seen it before and was only vaguely aware that it contained the phrase, “I coulda been a contender.” I’m just as impressed as anyone else by explosions and talking robots and the fact that Nicolas Cage is still somewhat employable, but there’s something to be said for Marlon Brando in black and white. Some people just radiate amazing.
(Side note: I once dated this guy who I’m now pretty sure was gay, but he looked just like young Marlon Brando so naturally I kept seeing him. He dumped me because I didn’t want to go to some supergay movie with him. Then he moved to LA to pursue acting, and I really hope he got a part in Birdemic.)
After On The Waterfront, I drank more wine and watched some of Rescue Me, season 2. Around 10:30, I went to bed. I did not see Graham. I won’t see him tonight, either, because he doesn’t get off work until at least 2am and the bar I’m going to closes well before that. I won’t see Graham until tomorrow, and after that, not until Wednesday. Thanks to my corporate schedule and Graham’s restaurant schedule, Sundays and Wednesdays are the only days we get to see one another.
This isn’t ideal for either of us, but it’s tolerable because that’s the way it is. If we want paychecks, we have to work. If we want to work, we have to wake up and get there on time. If we want to wake up and get there on time, we can’t rearrange our schedules to allow for 2-hour sleep intervals just because some people don’t understand our relationship.
Recently, someone close to us told Graham that he needed to “get control over that relationship” and make me “stay up late a few times a week” in order for us to see one another more. Apparently, this person’s marital status and time management skills make them an expert on how other people should run their lives.
Anytime I feel the desire to comment on someone else’s relationship, I stop myself and consider the following:
1. Did this person tell me they were unhappy?
2. Do I truly have intimate knowledge of this relationship, or am I merely projecting based on an assumption and my own buried issues?
3. What the fuck do I know, anyway?
Because relationships are weird. They’re a strange animal of their own, and the only people with real insight into how they work (or don’t work) is the people conducting them. So unless one of those people straight up tells me they’re miserable or I’ve personally taken them out of some domestic abuse situation, I have to assume that they know what they’re doing. And even if they don’t, it’s none of my business to assume otherwise.
So why the fuck do people think they can tell us how to conduct our relationship? Specifically, why do people think they can tell Graham to tell me how much sleep I’m allowed to get, especially when I wake up at 5:30am five days a week and he works until the middle of the night? How does that make any sense?
Look, it’s fine if that sort of thing works for you. If showing up to work comatose makes your personal life better, go for it. Knock yourself out with domestic bliss. But just because someone else does things differently, that doesn’t mean they’re unhappy. Mine and Graham’s relationship isn’t very conventional and for now the schedule isn’t ideal, but it works for us. We don’t need to be together every single day in order to feel secure. We don’t need to be in one another’s face all the time, bitching and fighting and escaping to work just so we can be left the hell alone for a change. If we did, we’d work something out. But until then, keep your idea of the perfect relationship to yourself.
Because although you apparently think you’re an expert at this sort of thing, you obviously haven’t yet realized that YOU’RE NOT THE BOSS OF ME.
If you haven’t been to The Val Kilmer Project lately, I recommend checking it out again. The introductions are done and new stuff is added daily. Also, even though Zuckerberg is clearly envious of Val Kilmer and this is why Facebook has re-classified us as a community page which means we don’t get an icon (whatever that is), we’re still shooting for fandom and it would be really nice if you could like us on Facebook.