Gather around people and come on down the front anyone who’s ever wondered how the hell you maintain a big, fat, healthy relationship. Is everybody in? Good, now throw all your self-help books, astrology charts, aromatherapy candles, emotion journals, lucky rabbit feet and even your Card Captor Sakura body pillow into the bonfire before you. You won’t be needing all that rubbish anymore, because while in deep-thought mode, scrubbing a bathroom tap this morning, I discovered the key to cohabitation. Please note, I’m not claiming to be an all-knowing expert in the field, know anything about true love, hold the secret to inner peace or even the promise of domestic harmony (let alone understand why buttered toast always falls face-down). Heck no, I’m just enlightening you all on a simple technique I’ve worked out in which will stop you from wanting to garrote your partner on a daily basis. I call it my “you’re buggered, I’m buggered” theory, and if you can bear with me for another 500-ish words or so, I’ll attempt to share these pearls of relationship-wisdom.
First, the one and only rule is as simple and as complex as this – you have to square up to the mirror and face the fact that you’re an imperfect human being with at least three traits that a potential partner is going to find almost unbearable. Now whether this trio of troubles (Ooo alliteration!) are blatantly obvious, swimming just below the surface or entombed deep within your soul is for you to determine, but the quicker you identify them, the quicker we can be on our merry way.
Now, the good news is that you are not alone. Everyone has at least three things that are guaranteed to make you cry, weep and make you want to curse them to the deep darkest of pits of hell; especially when they’re magnified by the pressures of living under the same roof. There’s nothing romantic about it, but the secret really is accepting that “you’re buggered, I’m buggered” and then getting on with the business of finding the person with the three things you hate the least.
In my years of searching for this perfect fit of flaws, I’ve found potential life-partners with a variety of habits, mannerisms, obsessions, characteristics and fetishes (pronounced: FEE-TISH-IS) that, in the end, I found deeply disconcerting and highly annoying. There was one who decided that eating with his mouth ajar was the new black, yet only ended in him appearing to be a malnutritioned pony with a chaff bag. 88% missed his mouth and was sent straight to the table surface. There was the one who picked his scabs whilst watching Neighbors (funnily enough, I don’t quite remember whether it was the scab picking or the fact that we were watching Neighbors that bugged me). The one who didn’t wash his hair for two whole weeks because he was going through a deep-set EMO-TRASH moment. The one who didn’t speak. The one who literally got lost looking for a toilet and thus was late by 45 minutes because he refused to ask for directions. The one who kept on saying that Coldplay was the best band in the world. The one who didn’t own any music. The moody one. The sulky one. The smelly one. The nasty one. The one who never put the lid back on the toothpaste.
Sure, some of those short-comings were small, I concur. But in the end, I have decided that I will settle with a bloke who never changes the empty toilet roll, kicks and talks in his sleep and is prone to long periods of sniffling instead of short bursts of blowing his nose. A set of triplets I can easily live with, especially when you stop to consider that here’s a girl with some pretty huge chinks in her armor. My own imperfections include an obsessive desire to keep everything in order – cans of preserved cabbage with cans of preserved cabbage in the kitchen cupboards, a strange requirement to purchase at least one “CUTE!” item on eBay every week, keeping little bags for little bags of little bags; being unable to commit to anything without have at least 2 days notice (unless I’ve organised the event myself) and a need to eat anything and everything with cheese on it, only to breakout in either a hive-like skin rash or sneezing like an elephant with dust up it’s nostrils about 2 hours later.
So, there you have it. While there will always be three things you hate about your partner, given time you’ll eventually love to hate those three things.
JAYNE’S WORDS OF WISDOM. ISH.
ALSO: If you haven’t heard THREE IS THE MAGIC NUMBER before, the lyrics are really quite nifty (or nauseating, whichever suits your world view).