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Monday, December 21, 2009

The Pursuit of Perfection


Ponita asked: “Where do I find one like you up here?” (Whoa! People “like me” aren’t all THAT marvelous to associate with...trust me on this).

Rahm Emanuel, Obama’s Chief-of-Staff answers: “We will not let the pursuit of the perfect stand in the way of achievable goals”.

I ponder.

An acquaintance of many years once fell in love with a lad. He was a tradesman. I never met him and I can’t recall his craft. Let’s call him a carpenter (‘cuz the imagery is just too righteous...hammerin’, nailin’, erectin’, etc., etc.). Yeppers, let’s make him a carpenter.

And she? She was a scholar. “Best in Class” from first grade through twelfth. She was gonna matriculate with a degree in business administration, dontcha know. She was...exceptional.

He loved her. She loved him. He proposed. She declined.

OK, allow me this: I don’t know the full story. I don’t know the in’s and out’s. All I know is what I heard: that she passed on a man who loved her.

She figured she could do/deserved better. She was a scholar. A woman of substance. She was smokin' hot. She was not one to sell herself short.

The carpenter lad was sent packin’. He eventually found another. Created a family. Lived...well...however he lived. I don’t know his story. Just his fate.

She? She dated quite a few well-educated, well-heeled professionals. She searched far and wide, did whatever she needed to do to probe her and their desires. Sadly, nothin’ much came from that. She courted wealth, fine pedigree and sculpted cheekbones. She actually found ample exemplars of all that. She experienced a full three decades of all that.

But she found neither love nor devotion. She never again revelled in loyalty, honesty or raw sweat.

She had assiduously attended to her explorations.

She ended up hopelessly longing for a pair of honest, calloused hands.

* * *

17 Comments:

Blogger secret agent woman said...

Is that her version of it or your thoughts on it? And by that I just mean that no one ever truly knows what goes on in any other's relationship. Even when they seem to be geting the full story. There may have been other reasons why the initial relationship could not work that are unrelated to his social standing. It's always so much more complicated than it seems.

Mon Dec 21, 08:45:00 PM  
Blogger Ponita in Real Life said...

The whole of the story is between the two of them... but it seems so sad that she passed on the one who loved her then, to search but to never find another like him. And I suppose, sometimes, there never is another...

The bits of your inner self that seep through your writings are what made me long for 'one like you', Jonas. We are complex beings and so multi-faceted, that glimpses can never reveal the whole of one's self. But I admire and respect the emotional intuitiveness you possess... and how you let it flow through your fingers and onto these webpages.

Mon Dec 21, 09:00:00 PM  
Blogger Fiona said...

I used to long for honest, calloused hands. For someone who crafted, created, gave birth to beautiful objects, or just made things work. Either would have done.

I ended up with a man who has hands softer than mine, but whom I love to the point of it hurting.

Life throws us all sorts of things, it's only important that we reach up and catch the right ones :)

Great post Jonas.

Mon Dec 21, 09:49:00 PM  
Blogger lu said...

and had she held onto the rough handed carpenter regret would have festered there too. That damn greener pasture is a needy bastard.

Mon Dec 21, 10:24:00 PM  
Blogger Jay said...

Perfection is always right in front of us. But only if we want to see it.

Tue Dec 22, 11:16:00 AM  
Blogger Mary said...

Kudos to her for not settling! Though I also would add that assiduously attending to love is probably a losing proposition.

Tue Dec 22, 06:16:00 PM  
Anonymous joanne said...

i don't know the woman or the man in this particular story, but what i've found in similar stories is that Anais Nin was spot on... We don't see things (others) as they are... We see them as we are...

what the lady in your story saw was someone she deemed not good enough... but really, in what ways was she herself insecure, not good enough ??... this man was a painful mirror for her to look in to... to relieve the discomfort, she wandered and searched for a mirror that felt more comfortable ... after decades of looking outside of herself she was of course doomed to failure because the heart's inner voice eventually becomes too insistent to ignore ...

Wed Dec 23, 12:03:00 AM  
Blogger L'uragano (The Hurricane) said...

I find many of the comments just as fascinating as the post, Jonas. I don't know. Lots o' factors here..too many variables to decide. But your romanticism shows through loud and clear....that maybe love--all by itself--need be enough. But someone loving you -- doesn't mean you love them back; it also doesn't mean that because you love someone, they're right for you. I loved many a man who either weren't good for me or weren't good to me. And if you asked them, i'm cetain they would say they loved me...i believe in the whole compatibility thing, the whole you gotta like 'em too thing...oh i'll just shut up now

Wed Dec 23, 02:16:00 AM  
Blogger Maria said...

You know..it is hard to say how it would have ended. I can tell you that often the things that seem unimportant in the beginning of a relationship, cause huge pot holes later on. Maybe this would have loomed over their relationship throughout.

But, yes. Always marry for love. Always.

Wed Dec 23, 07:18:00 AM  
Blogger Cheesy said...

And sometimes you are gifted with many to love. Maybe not always in a romantic way but love wears many jackets. I hope that most find at the least friendship love because at the most??-- It can at times is the strongest.
[ok it is early and I am in RV mind fog... pass up trying to figure out what I mean if it hurts the grey-matter lol]

Wed Dec 23, 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger Jonas said...

I gotta say, I find these comments thought-provoking...leading me down any number of rabbit-holes.

I tried to capture the essential truths of this woman's experience (as she relayed them to me). It's just one human's experience. Change the plot line just a wee bit and all new outcomes materialize.

We humans are most adept at transforming Romance to anguish.

It's not our finest trait.

Wed Dec 23, 09:33:00 PM  
Blogger deb said...

Off topic but have a wonderful Christmas Jonas.

Thu Dec 24, 11:29:00 AM  
Blogger Ponita in Real Life said...

Wishing you a peaceful and joyful Christmas, Jonas. May 2010 bring you love, laughter and good health.

Fri Dec 25, 12:09:00 AM  
Blogger Selma said...

It has been a pleasure to read your writing this year, Jonas. Much love to you at Christmas XXX

Sat Dec 26, 01:23:00 AM  
Blogger Scott from Oregon said...

I got calloused hands!

Sat Dec 26, 11:18:00 AM  
Blogger Jonas said...

It's a bit too late to wish you all a Merry Christmas. My bad.

But...a new year has begun. I hope the coming year brings all of you unexpected gifts and blessings.

You deserve them.

Sun Jan 03, 09:44:00 PM  
Blogger Christella said...

What a sad tale but beautifully written.

Wed Jan 06, 03:45:00 PM  

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