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Lessons From A Failed Romance – 1 December 23, 2005

Posted by espritnoir in Uncategorized.

‘Tis the wedding season in India, right now, and I’ve been scooting from one wedding to another the past few weeks. Tiring job, really, but hey, its better being on this side of the field, than the other. Anyway, weddings also have some unexpected benefits somewhere. A couple of weddings back, I chanced to bump into this old acquaintance of mine from college. We had been fairly decent friends back then, but had gradually lost contact over the years. As I had mentioned elsewhere on these pages, it’s always a pleasant surprise to catch up with people from the past, and we ended up with plans for a drink or two the next evening.

Most of the next day, I tried hard to recall the last few times we had met up. I think it was around the time I was in Pune doing my postgrad, during one of my frequent Bombay trips. I remember that at that time, he had been going strong with some girl from our college, they had been together for almost 3 years when I last met him. Possible marriage plans on the cards. I knew coz at one time, I was asked to resolve a debate on what they should name their first born. As I made my way over to Eightys that night, I wondered whether that debate had finally been resolved as yet. The timing would have seemed to be about right. I made a mental note to ask him that night.

A couple of beers down, and we had filled in the period gaps in each other lives over the past few years. “I am working…I did this…Did you know…?” He seemed a little out of touch with most people we knew in common, and it was mostly me, who was filling in the blanks. And, surprisingly, even after the second beer, he still hadn’t mentioned his girlfriend, which was quite strange, I thought. I really wanted to know, the name of the first born, coz I had a small private wager at stake. So, I quietly slipped it in conversation. And reality came as a fair shock to me.

She had left him. Walked out of his life, said she had fallen in love with somebody else. The night she told him, she had cried herself; said she couldn’t help it; and said she was sorry, but that’s the way it was. ‘We could still be friends’, he quoted her with such sarcasm, that for a second, I couldn’t recognize him. Cynicism was not his character.

There are times when you know how to deliver the perfect punch-line to the joke, and then there are the times when your tongue turns to sand inside your mouth. This was one of those times. When somebody tells you they’ve broken up with somebody they love, there’s very little you can say to them. Since I really didn’t know what to say, apart from the clumsy and so inadequate, “Oh, I’m so sorry to hear that. It must have been so hard on you…” and the usual bullshit platitudes, I just remained quiet, and let him do the talking. He must have been silent for too long, all these years, coz suddenly it just came out like a tidal wave. Apparently, five years later she had realized that she was in love with someone else. And I was amazed just as I heard it from him, how anybody could do this to someone. Just up and leave one fine day. And then he told me, something that really cheesed me off, – the bitch I thought (and I really didn’t even know her that well) – A year after she broke up with him, she called him up, and asked him to meet up with her. He did, and she actually had the nerve to invite him to her wedding. Said that she should have never let him go as a friend. Christ, I mean get a life, lady! The guy really worshipped her, and this is how she hands it back to him! What has the fricking world come to?

“I was a mess, man. Really didn’t know how life was going to end. I mean, crying is only cool when Tom Hanks does it at the Oscars. For six months, I was just plain ugly. One fine day, I decided to write something, just wanted to write “KILLKILLKILL’’…you know rage therapy or something. After six pages of KILL, I ended up with a list of things Do’s & Don’ts if I ever get into another relationship.”

He showed me the list, and although I wasn’t really sure I understood everything he meant in it, I was intrigued. And he gracefully agreed to me putting it up on the blog.

Here it is, more or less as he had penned it down :

1) Always give your 100%. Even if the other person doesn’t. The satisfaction that you tried your best to make it work, will be the only salve, however inadequate, to the excruciating pain you will suffer when you break up.

2) Be gentle, not tough; Be strong, not weak

3) Never be hopelessly biased towards the one you love. You are as important in a relationship as your partner is.

4) Know when to put your foot down. Learn to say No.

5) Always find some time for yourself. Never lose touch with reality.

6) Write her silly poems, and buy her balloons and flowers.

7) Make a commitment before somebody else whisks her away. Love, and your lover, may not wait forever. Make your move fast.

8) Accept it when you have failed, and exit with grace. Even if you get the other person after losing your dignity, it’ll never be the same again. If you won’t respect yourself, nobody else will.

9) Don’t expect to loved back forever. Sometimes, love works only one way.

10) Never be too emotionally dependant on the person you love. If you love her truly, you wont allow her to be dependant on you too.

11) Don’t get addicted to talking on the phone for hours every night. The night it stops ringing, it’ll feel worse than hell.

12) Act Strong. Think Fast. Die Hard. (I had no idea what he meant by this, and he refused to explain. He just gave me a sly smile and told me to think over it. I will put it down to Cinemania, and the fact that he was sozzled when he had written this.)

This was more or less it, as best I could rely on memory and hastily scribbled on paper napkins. I agree with some, am not sure of a few, and am completely lost with the rest. But, these revelations seemed to have given him the courage to hold on.

(This is the first part of this post. He told me something else which i will be putting up on the next blogpost, within a few days time.)



1. poemer - December 23, 2005

You left a message on my blog, so I’m checking yours out. I’m enjoying the reading so far!

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