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December 5th, 2004
01:12 am
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"Romanticism ought to one day strike a person as chilly. I think the movie 'Sleepless in Seattle' did the trick for some people, but I'll approach the task a little more abstractly. Let's take the classic romantic story of the knight slaying the dragon to get the princess. Remove the dragon and you do not have a romantic story, you have -- I don't know -- a society notice.

"Romanticism is a trick; it seems to hinge on sexual devotion, but really hinges on the presence of an obstacle to the union that needs to be destroyed. When there's no obstacle, things turn unromantic and we don't know why."

-- Scott Miller

(Also reminding people that I'm posting again at Tomorrowlands. If you're a lazy LJer, you can simply add tlands_dot_org to your friends list for the RSS feed notification of new posts.)

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From:raki
Date:December 5th, 2004 02:19 am (UTC)
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I think that's a pretty simplistic depiction of romance, or affection. People don't need to suffer before a situation or a relationship is romantic, they just need to care about each other.
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From:baxil
Date:December 5th, 2004 02:26 am (UTC)
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I think the point was that it isn't a description of "romance, or affection." It was trying to draw the line between the two -- which are good things -- and "romanticism," which is the empty desire of the thrill of the chase.
From:raki
Date:December 5th, 2004 02:31 am (UTC)
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That's just a semantic game, then.

Because the statement "When there's no obstacle, things turn unromantic and we don't know why" is clearly false.
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From:baxil
Date:December 5th, 2004 02:39 am (UTC)
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Huh?

I don't see that conclusion as clear at all. NRE is pretty well defined. And I see framing the "romantic" (second sense) spark and the dying thereof, in terms of overcoming the "obstacles to conquer," as a similar or parallel construction.
From:raki
Date:December 5th, 2004 02:55 am (UTC)
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Maybe it's that my experience has been rather different. In the only relationship I've been in, time actually intensified my feelings, it didn't diminish them because things became stable. But then, I'm insane. ;-p

I mean, we watch Sleepless In Seattle, but the narrative ends when the couple finally meet. The dragon is slain. They all live happily ever after. You don't get to see the subjective experience for each person as they go about the business of being in a relationship and dealing with real feelings and experiences. The thrill of the chase may be over, but IMO that's where the romance begins.
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From:baxil
Date:December 5th, 2004 03:14 am (UTC)
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Exactly. Detach from the word -- he's not speaking out against "romance", he's speaking out against the "Sleepless in Seattle" interpretation of it.

(The remainder of the paragraph I didn't quote goes right back to "Sleepless" and carries the dragon analogy over.)
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From:baxil
Date:December 5th, 2004 03:12 am (UTC)
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I probably should be explicit here and say that I'm not trying to disparage "romantic" things. Romantic gestures, those which transform one's love into a visible and touching gesture, are very sweet and necessary things. But what's being spoken out against is the way that's conflated with a sort of conquest attitude toward love.

Romantic gestures should be driven by an act of caring and rejoicing in your partner's happiness. Not, to jump back into Scott's phrasing, to "slay the dragon."
From:raki
Date:December 5th, 2004 03:27 am (UTC)
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Well, I don't even think that was the Sleepless in Seattle version of romance. SiS was about two people being driven to be together by cosmic forces, and that was what made the story supposedly "touching" and "romantic" (although completely unrealistic, IMO, and it used cheap sentiment rather than the very un-cinematic notion of togetherness, or the banality of an actual relationship), rather than the thrill of the chase being romantic. The thrill made for a good story, as much as any suspenseful story, but it didn't make it 'romantic'.
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From:kinkyturtle
Date:December 5th, 2004 04:16 am (UTC)
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I don't wanna slay the dragon anyway! Dragons are cool.

I think there should be a story where there's a dashing knight, a beautiful princess, and a dragon, but the dragon is, like, a friend of the happy couple or something, and he comes over for pizza every now and then. That would be a cool story!

Also there should be a nice warm bed. Oh, I mean for me. I'm tired and it's late and I'm sleepy and
From:raki
Date:December 5th, 2004 03:13 pm (UTC)
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Have you read The Paper Bag Princess? It's about a princess who gets kidnapped by a dragon, and a young prince goes to save her, but it turns out that the dragon isn't so bad after all, just a bit lonely. So the princess takes up with the dragon and tells the prince to shove off, and they live pretty much happily ever after.

If I were a princess, I would definitely want to hang out with dragons!
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From:kadyg
Date:December 6th, 2004 02:41 pm (UTC)
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Speaking as a princess who does hang out with a dragon, I think I need to add that book to my library list.
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From:baphnedia
Date:December 5th, 2004 08:39 am (UTC)

Oooh RSS!

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I'll completely miss the point of your post and jump right to the question: How did you get RSS to work with LJ?

I'm still re-building my site, and getting RSS to work with blogs, might be a good way to distribute news and such. Speaking of which, we may be able to add your RSS feed to my mix as well... whatdyasay?
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From:baphnedia
Date:December 5th, 2004 08:54 am (UTC)

Re: Oooh RSS!

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Ok ok... I got the answer to my question... now I just have to add your feed to my site or something, if you want to.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:January 24th, 2005 09:27 am (UTC)
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http://www.mopsy.com/d/19981219.html
http://www.mopsy.com/d/19990916.html

Nice demonstrations of romanticism. A little late, but I was re-reading the archive.
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