Lies movies told me

I’m writing this the night before I skip town again. I’ve been told to pack for four days, but I could easily be gone for a week, so please don’t worry if this blog collects dust for the next seven days. Not that you would. You’re all so patient!

Anyway. This weekend a friend of mine admitted he was watching Hitch for dating advice. Obviously I was immediately like WHY ARE YOU DOING THAT, MOVIES GIVE TERRIBLE ADVICE. Because they really do! In fact, most of the time they flat-out lie to you. When you’re young and impressionable and believe umbrellas will make you fly, it’s cute. When you’re an adult, it’s…less so.

Here’s a list of seven lies the movies taught me were true.

1. Your best friend is the one for you.

“No.” “Ew.”

I’ve been very lucky with my hetero male friends. They’re all wonderful dudes who will totally make some girl very happy someday. That being said, the thought of sexy-touching any of them gives me THE SCREAMING ICKS. There are a lot of different kinds of love, and I love my guy friends in a totally different way than I love my boyfriends. And anyway, when you’ve known anyone for ten plus years, the mystery required for a romantic relationship kind of goes out the window, you know?

2. Weddings are the end.

Happily ever after…?

I’m not married, but even I know that this is a crock of shit. Getting married doesn’t mean you get to throw up your hands and say “Finally! The hard times are over!” because LIFE IS A BUNCH OF HARD TIMES. And if you tether your heart to another heart (not to mention giving birth to other hearts, which is a whole other thing) then simple math determines that you’ll have exponentially more hard times. But! You’ll also have way more awesome times! Because that’s how life goes, too.

3. Everyone thinks artsy girls are ugly.

Yeah. Hideous.

Sure, there’s a small contingent of people in the world who only recognise cheerleaders as attractive, but these people make up MAYBE 2% of the entire population. And that 2% isn’t the people you’d expect. I call this phenomenon The Juno Hypothesis after this line in the movie:

  • “Jocks always want freaky girls: girls with horn-rimmed glasses, and vegan footwear, and Goth makeup…Girls who, like, play the cello and read McSweeney’s and want to be childrens’ librarians when they grow up. Oh, yeah, jocks totally eat that shit up.”

The most straight-laced seeming people always want the freaks. I don’t know why, but it happens. This explains so much about my dating life, you have no idea.

But anyway. Sure, maybe in high school you alternative dudes and girls won’t get the attention you deserve, but afterwards? Suitors from all corners. Be tortured and artistic and wear a lot of black. It’s a classic look for a reason.

4. All bad boys/girls will immediately reform when they meet “the right one.”

Neither of these two stopped being jerks for longer than three minutes in a four hour movie.

It seems a little pessimistic to say that people don’t change. Instead I’ll say that people CAN change, but they seldom do. Don’t ever date anyone you need to change in order to tolerate them. You’re setting yourself up for failure.

5. Opposites attract.

Frying pans. Who knew?

They might attract, but do they stay together? If it please the court, I’d like to present exhibit A: my parents. Mama Malice is as highly strung as Papa Malice is laid-back. Mama Malice is super-emotional; Papa Malice is a Vulcan. These two spent ten years deliriously in love and then another ten fighting ALL THE TIME and scarring their oldest child forever. This makes me think that like + like is a much better match than opposites.

6. Everything happens for a reason.


Nobody wants to hear it from a cancer survivor, but sometimes things just HAPPEN. You didn’t get dumped specifically so that you could meet your husband, and you didn’t lose your job because there’s a perfect job out there JUST WAITING for you to take it. Everything always works out in the movies and serendipity plays a huge part in that. Not so in the real world.

7. Grand romantic gestures are wonderful.

Reminder: he’s saying this to his best friend’s wife.

They almost always come off as creepy. I’m just saying.

What do you guys think? Am I horribly off base? Let me have it in the comments, and I’ll see you when I’m home.

4 thoughts on “Lies movies told me

  1. I agree with some of what you say…like the weddings part…and the art chicks part….but I slightly disagree with some of it…some romantic gestures are wonderful…when they aren’t being creepy haha Only wonderful if they are from the right person, but it’s hard to know if you are the right person for the one you are gesturing towards.

    Some things do just happen. I’m sure my train was late just because it was. I think some things have a reason for happening, and even if they do “just happen”, the reasoning comes after. Not stupid things like my train, but bigger things. Major things. Things that had to happen. Those happen for a “reason”, but you decide what that reason was. Even if there is no fated reason, you still learn something from major experiences, which is the point of everything in life.

    Otherwise I agree. Especially the Juno theory. I got hit on by jocks all the time when I was “alternative”.

  2. I love this blog!!! I agree with a bunch of these, but some I disagree with or have a conflicted opinion about. Nonetheless, this blog was amazing and I want to do my own version.

  3. So true! Yes its funny how the romantic comedies are so off base – nice to watch for 2 hours but can’t actually learn anything from them. Hopefully the teens aren’t thinking the Twilight series is based on what a real guy is

  4. Agree completely except for minor tweaks to the first one. If mystery is required for a romantic relationship, that relationship isn’t going to last after the mystery is gone…and it probably won’t take longer than a year or two for the mystery to fade out. Then what do you have left?

    I’m not saying you have to start with the friendship where there’s no sexual chemistry — that doesn’t work either. Despite what the movies show, this: is a much more likely scenario than Happily Ever After when “friends” get together.

    I am saying this: strong, lasting, healthy romantic relationships include sexual attraction, of course, but they’re based primarily on best-friendship. So it’s not technically accurate to say that “your best friend is the one for you” is a lie. It’s more the case that “the one for you” is at least *going* to be your best friend, even if they aren’t to start with.


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