“I don’t care that you just broke my heart, I love you.” – Desiree Hartsock
I’m not a fun person to watch TV with. I toss expletives and spoil plots that are as obvious as toupees. When, on this season of The Bachelorette, there were three men remaining, I knew which one Des would choose.
“Let me see. Two men said they love her; one didn’t. She wants Brooks–the one who didn’t.”
“No, that’s human nature: We tend to value that for which we struggle over things handed to us.”
Naturally, my prediction comes true. Brooksie confesses he’s not quite “there,” and leaves Des with substantial face leakage. To save some face of his own, he blubbers and squeals about how conflicted he is.
Maybe I do love her. No, I can’t picture myself spending the rest of my life with her. But, she’s wonderful. I hate hurting her. Wow, she really does love me. Maybe, I should love her. Well, I’m certainly going to have access to a new universe of fine ladies. But, they’ll just want me because of my fame and flowing locks. Des is awesome. Damn.
Then, Des floods the set with nobody-ever-loves-me tears.
What’s wrong with me? Why won’t he love me? He acted like he loved me. What did I do? Did my brother get involved somehow? Why can’t I find love? I know, two other guys love me, but I don’t love them. I love Brooks. Well, I used to love him. Now, I hate him. He made me look like an ass on TV. No, he was just being honest. It’s my fault. I do love him. If he changes his mind, I can’t take him back. This is so difficult. Why did I sign up for this? Oh, that’s right: money and fame. Ugh.
Whenever there’s predictably questionable activity by humans, I look for evolutionary reasons. (It’s so much easier to be religious and say, “That’s just the way God wants it.” I don’t have the luxury of that excuse.) Why do we shy away from what we know we need, even when it’s handed to us? Are we jaded? Do we fear it’s too good to be true? Are we embarrassed because we don’t feel we’ve earned it? Why struggle to win someone over? Will your fight for him change how he feels? If something is handed to you, do you fear a hidden trap or catch?
Evolution taught us to prefer our own kills, especially the difficult ones.
If Brooks changes his mind after messing his hair, walking in circles, and squealing like a hungry piglet, should Des shrug off his initial rejection and allow him on bended knee? Hell, no, she shouldn’t. If she does, she’ll be doing it to make the producers happy. If she takes him back, she won’t be able to shake the memory that he didn’t want her until he hurt her. In fact, she’ll torture him by reminding him of his prime-time misdeed each time he missteps.
Let’s fight our obsolete evolutionary remnants. Not only should we look a gift horse on the mouth, but we should also accept it graciously.