Stories have a beginning, a middle, and an end. They always start with Once Upon A Time, and end… not always happily, but always ever after.
That’s why I like them. Unlike my life, they’re ordered. Even amongst chaos. When I’m fighting with someone I love, Jane will always return to Rochester. When I’m stressing about money, I know that Lizzy will think Darcy a proud man. When I am about to make a life-altering decision, I know that Viola will lust after Orsino.
Their lives give mine order.
People like to say that books can transport you. To another time, another place, different people, different lives, however and whatever you want to read into it: It’s there. A good story will always bring you back, even though you know how it ends. Not because you want it to end differently, but because it can’t end any other way.
Romeo and Juliet frustrates me sometimes. I want to shake them violently and just say “Wait! Look around you! Slow down!” and then I realize that someone might be shouting that at me.
I wish my life were a book sometimes. I can tell what’s coming in a book. Plot lines are so predictable. My life is not. Will she get that job? Will she sleep with that man? Will she move to a different country?
I think that’s why the world loves a good story. Regardless of your favorite intake method (reading, watching, hearing, touching, feeling) our lives are one big novel, set up for us to play out and for others to watch. Does art imitate life? Or does life imitate art?
Does looking at a painting of a small girl tell you everything that a novel would? Does a novel tell you everything that being her friend would?
We weave ourselves so seamlessly in and out of these character’s lives. I want to know what happens when the book is closed. When the couple has finally kissed. When the illness is beaten, or the villain defeated. “What happens after “The End?”
Maybe their plots are ordered so that we never see the loose ends, whereas our lives are not so tidy. Our lives have a beginning, a middle and an end, too. They start and end the same way.
But the middles are so much messier.
-Admin R is feeling existential