• The Lights and Shadows of (Trying) to Flirt at 37
  • Bisbal's ex syndrome: why the other succeeds... When you leave it

I envy even more than the unbearably happy couples who have a story about how they met that any Netflix showrunner would leer. "We met in class" or "we were introduced by a friend" are classics that bore me soporificly, and I think that the fault lies with romantic comedies and the way they make us believe that the moment we drop a folder full of papers, when we bend down to pick up those notes scattered on the floor our forehead will collide with that of a handsome man who has rushed to rescue the papers. papers at the speed of someone who jumps into the water to prevent their ring from getting lost in the depths. I remember the way in which an idyllic couple told me their love story in two voices in such an exciting and orchestrated way, that I stopped envying their complicity to want to steal the magic of their narrative.

That's why, ever since I returned to the world of singleness, I've been longing for a good story to tell. Yes, apps allow you to meet a lot of people, but starting the story by saying "We met on Tinder" seems boring to me, which is not to say that a date that starts with one of these apps can't have an unexpected twist that makes romance a mine of headlines. Maybe it's not just the romcoms' fault, but that one of the first literary memories I have is seeing the book "Vivir para contarla", by Gabriel García Márquez, on my mother's bookshelf, and I guess the title stuck with me. Let me clarify that the other one I remember is 'How to be unhappy and enjoy it', by Carmen Rico Godoy, and the truth is that I still haven't found a way to achieve it...

It happened in the museum

The thing is that I catch myself doing all kinds of pirouettes in my day to day to force curious love stories. Let us understand that when I speak of "love" I am not speaking of "love", because I am afraid that it cannot be forced. The clearest example occurred this summer, when in a museum, I noticed the security of one of the rooms and decided that it was a good idea to give him my phone number. In the same way that I couldn't drop a folder full of papers that caused an entertaining romantic story because in this digital world, we don't usually carry pages or folders, I didn't have a sad paper or a pen with me, so I went around the museum looking for these basics to write down my number. It wasn't easy. Finally, I wrote down my phone number on the museum's entrance ticket, returned to the room and gave the paper to the aforementioned man, aware that even if he didn't call me, the story was good. That's why, when he wrote to me, I thought he was finally in one of my beloved romantic comedies. "Here I come, Netflix!" I thought.

We met that night and during the date, I forced myself to believe that everything he told me fit perfectly with what I was looking for. I pretended that we were the perfect couple that night and we walked hand in hand through the streets looking at each other as if the stars had aligned. I don't know if he wanted his own romantic comedy too or if the exaggeration of the plot I had set in motion made him act like that, but from the outside, anyone would have thought we were a couple in love. Actually, we didn't know our last names and I wasn't even sure what his name was, because in my head it was "the one from the museum". We talked for two weeks every day and I let go of painful spelling mistakes and a myriad of obvious incompatibilities until he decided to come visit me.

The problem with talking to someone without seeing them for so long is that you are assailed by what I call the 'Love is Blind Syndrome', which of course, lacks any scientific validity and is due to the Netflix reality show in which couples fall in love simply by talking, without seeing each other physically. When they finally fall in love and get engaged, they meet and face the show of having to make the brain understand that THAT VOICE corresponds to THAT PERSON. In real life, what happens is that the mind fills in the gaps that are generated in those conversations with our desires, so when that person finally appears, not everything corresponds to what we have been building in that work full of physical voids.

But let's go back to the man at the museum. He was going to stay at my house for a weekend (I clarify that we met in his city) and knowing that life is not Hollywood, and that when it is in my case, it is more like 'Saving Private Ryan' than 'You Have an Email', I had been fearing a terrible outcome for a long time. The encounter was as disastrous as I imagined: aside from the elaborate magic of how we met, we were just two strangers with nothing in common, and I realized that this romantic comedy was a short film. At least, though, I have a story to tell...

The problem is that if finding someone compatible is very complicated, my insistence that the love story has all the elements so that precisely talking about "story" makes sense makes the search for a +1 more and more difficult. The trend of platforms like Netflix to make docuseries about celebrity love stories doesn't help either, as they make you see that Cupid not only gets creative in fiction, but also in real life... Although apparently, he has a certain aesthetic snobbery when it comes to doing so and prefers that those sentimental narratives worthy of mention happen to those who are so beautiful that they deserve to have their story narrated and recorded.

Don't be afraid of me

As if that wasn't enough, a few weeks ago a date told me that she was afraid to go out with me "in case I had something to say in an article." Wow, I've become the white-label Carrie Bradshaw who is able to narrate her intimate life for the sake of a good headline. I wish I had brought out my Miranda Hobbs side and told her not to worry, because I wouldn't think of telling anyone so boring at all. Oops: I just did it. "Oops, I did it again!".

I still hope that one day I'll sit on the plane next to my next partner (like in the Netflix romcom 'The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight'), that I'll go to the wrong floor and try to open the door of a handsome chef (yes: that happens in 'Emily in Paris') or that when I'm walking down the street glued to my phone, throw a poor cyclist and we fall in love in the ER (this happens in 'And just like that'). In the meantime, I'm still determined to give my number to whoever I like by means of notes without ever ceasing to see how the algorithm of the applications has a certain mania for me... Although maybe it's Cupid who doesn't like me, I'm still not sure.

  • Couple relationships