Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Shrek is my Prince Charming
Everyone is afraid of something.
Steven King has actually made what most would consider a fortune by spinning terror into stories.
I am not afraid of boogymen or monsters.
I am generally afraid of people.
I don't think this fear is altogether that unusual. We all fear judgment, ridicule, not fitting in... fill in the blank.
Tomorrow I get my first grade back on my first paper for my college English class. I am putting tons of pressure on myself about this dumb class. I have four books published, two more under contract and quite a few sitting on the burner. I know I can write. It is one of my great loves. But for some reason, this one mans judgment of my work has built itself up in my head to be worse than a rejection letter. Why do we do that to ourselves? Realistically, not passing a college writing class is going to have no long term consequence in my life. But I am honestly all worked up over getting that paper back.
We are afraid to care too much, for fear that the other person does not care at all.-Eleanor Roosevelt
Love is another one of those things I am terrified of. Which is funnier than the average bean... after all, I write romance. If I am so comfortable creating romance between fictional characters, why on earth would I be afraid of real life love stories?
Because, like just about all my readers over the age of 12, I got burned. I got burned bad. It is easy to write love where the characters say the right thing at the right time. I have yet to find a man willing to let me script his dialogue.
Love will find a way through paths where wolves fear to prey.-Lord Byron
And then today I was watching Shrek Forever After. How I have missed this movie for this long is beyond me. Usually if there is a kid movie out there... I have seen it. As a matter of fact, I usually have most of the dialogue memorized from repeated views. Watching it, I realized that I want Shrek in a man.
No, I don't want a green, ogreish, smelly man covered in mud. I have long said that Dan from Roseanne was my perfect man. I now, after careful consideration, want Shrek.
1. Shrek thinks Fiona is hot when she is green and tubby and willing to behave like an ogre.
Most real men want a woman who acts in a way that is contrary to her nature. Shrek (like my old love affair with Dan) loves Fionna for all that she is, flaws and all. Who wants a guy who only finds her thrilling when she has her hair done? I want one that loves me in my pjs and thinks I am lovable when I am sniffling with a cold.
2. Shrek realizes that Fionna has value because she loves him.
Not that he loves her. Shrek finds value that out of everyone out in this big, bad world, Fionna chose him. This goes both ways. If we valued the fact that we chose to be with the ones we love rather than take it for granted... how cool would that be?
3. Shrek is happiest when Fionna is being a kick-ass woman willing to save herself.
Often in the Disney Princess influenced world of today, women have to need saved to have value. Again, like Dan and Roseanne, Shrek values that Fionna can rescue herself... and him, if needs be. The fact that she doesn't need him to play the swashbuckling hero is kind of a turn on for Shrek. And who doesn't like a strong female character?
4. Shrek has his friends; Fionna has hers.
Shrek will never fit into the hills of Far, Far Away. But he doesn't have to fit in to have value. Ditto for the swamp. Fionna may live there, but she was raised in a castle and then kept in a tower. It isn't her world. But Shrek can have Donkey and Puss. It doesn't lessen their relationship... if anything, it strengthens it by having someone around who is there for each of them outside the relationship.
5. Although Fionna spent years being locked up in a tower, her old issues aren't used as an excuse for her to act victimized. She is strong enough to get past it and Shrek is strong enough to love her without treating her like she should be pitied.
Okay, that was a long one but, basically, we all have baggage. There have been craptastic things that happened to me and I am sure pretty much everyone else. But if we are strong enough to get past them, then we shouldn't be treated like a china doll. The past is the past. What we made it through in said past makes us stronger... but isn't a reason to think you have to protect us from the world. Ditto for Dan and Roseanne... Her family is wonky as hell. But Dan doesn't wallow in pitying Roseanne. He appreciates what she went through to get to this point without treating her like she is spun glass because of it. Which in turn makes the traumatized one even stronger.
Basically, I may still be looking for my Shrek/Dan. But as I get older... I have a better idea what I am shopping for. The trick now is not being afraid to take it when it comes along...