I’ve been described as a free spirit, a flower child, a bohemian. My heart runs wild and free. Hollywood has definite opinions on who I am and how men can capture my heart (Garden State, you’re the bane of my existence in more ways than one).
There are songs on songs on songs written about me (“Scarlet Begonias” nailed it). And the books? I think half of all romance novels of all time are about men learning they will never tame me.
Here are a few things you should know if you fall in love and want to end up the Rhett to my Scarlett.
1. There’s no greater sin to us than being boring.
Of course we’ll need to chat about day-to-day stuff, and I’m happy to listen to you talk about your day at work, but if you think for one second that it’s going to fly to watch TV every night, have dinner at our regular spot, and maybe see a movie on Saturday night, you best walk on by.
Adventure is the only thing that holds my interest, big and small. Adventures are dance parties in our living room on a Tuesday; adventures are going to a new museum or trying stand-up paddle boarding; adventures are exploring a neighborhood we’ve never been in before; adventures are planning wonderful vacations a few months down the road.
Adventures are everything in between, but they’re never “same-old-same-old.”
2. We don’t always make the best decisions.
This is a combination of a lack of planning, a devil-may-care attitude, and a genuine interest in what’s going to happen if I just go ahead and do this thing. I like to think these decisions usually result in a funny story, an unexpectedly amazing time, or an important learning experience, but sometimes they’re just bad, bad decisions.
You should probably try to guide me away from all large machinery, for example. Also, I won’t always make decisions that are entirely based on sound logic.
3. But we’re functioning adults.
Because sometimes I forgo bras and use my paychecks on spontaneous trips and long lazy brunches instead of planning for retirement people think I’m an overgrown child.
Pal, I pay my bills and taxes same as you. I make my bed every morning, do laundry once a week, and know how to use an electric drill. I just prioritize enjoying life over everything else.
4. Sometimes we’re accidentally jerks.
I get very caught up in my daydreams and plans and sometimes I forget you have your own or that you might not care that much about what I’m doing. It’s rarely on purpose, so call me out on it. Tell me I’m being a jerk and I’ll do my best to get my act together.
5. Don’t call us Manic Pixie Dream Girls.
Don’t call me quirky or fiesty. I’m not a caricature of anything. I’m me.
Don’t forget this, because the Hollywood machine and the thousand million think-pieces it generated wore out my patience with “manic pixie dream girls” —and more specifically the men who are looking for them (goddamnit, Garden State).
6. We’re extremely independent.
To the point of my own detriment sometimes. It doesn’t mean I don’t need help sometimes — or that I don’t want you to help — it just means that I’d rather walk over hot coals than admit my weaknesses.
I’m strong and I’m proud, and sometimes you’re going to have to ignore my incredible ego and just do the thing you know I need you to that I can’t ask you for. (Yes, I realize that’s frustrating but I’ll appreciate and love you for it.) Oh, and also: If you ever see me cry, it should never be spoken of again. Ever.
7. We’ll never settle.
And don’t try to make me. I need acres of space to run and go and do and see everything. This is part and parcel of loving me. If you try to lock me down, I’ll very quickly grow to resent you, and I’ll fly away at the first available opportunity.