Every now and again (read: all of the time) I stumble upon (read: generally, it’s more of a faceplant) things and topics I just don’t get. Hard to believe, I know, but there it is.
So, in the hopes of maybe finding a kind person out there who will explain these things to me, here are five things that I just simply don’t understand.
I think I’m missing something important here. And it’s something that I truly wish I understood.
But, seriously, what’s the deal with poetry?
Poetry is something that’s just passed me by. I’ll read it but, honestly, unless it’s particularly clever with wordplay or it tells a rockin’ story, I just don’t understand the appeal.
I think my problem comes down to the way I view language: as a tool. For me, language is the means by which we tell stories and by which we think and have ideas. But, to me, language has no beauty in itself. You could write the most beautiful, flowing sentence in the world but unless it evoked a gorgeous image or helped to further along a beautiful story, I just don’t see it.
And that saddens me. Poetry is this whole genre where people can get their raw feelings out on a page in as few words as possible and it’s a genre that has completely passed me by.
2. The Craze for Love Triangles
The humble love triangle. It seems that you can’t turn around without seeing a movie poster or a book cover with three people pouting prettily on the cover.
When did this craze start? When did we decide that the best romantic conflict was when our protagonist was indecisive and insists on stringing along two hapless love interests?
Perhaps I can’t understand the appeal of love triangles because I’m forever cheering for the losing side. Invariably, the person who gets left out in the cold is the one I’ve decided is the soulmate of the main character and that makes me both cranky at the author for choosing the wrong one and angry at the protagonist for being short-sighted.
Maybe it’s just me, but I love romances where the characters can’t be together because of circumstance and bad luck. Where there is longing but there’s also a glaring problem that the couple must overcome before finally ending up together in an ending that leaves everyone happy.
I think this may be related to my inability to understand poetry, if I’m honest.
I can’t understand descriptive writing. Recently, for university, I’ve been reading Edgar Allan Poe. For those who aren’t familiar with him, (How? I thought that once things got on the Simpsons everyone knew about them) Poe’s writing is a metric tonne of description with a tiny amount of plot thrown in just for good form.
For example, one of Poe’s more famous works, The Fall of the House of Usher, is about 20 pages long. I swear that at least 15 of those pages are just about describing the house.
Can I tell you what that house looks like? No idea.
I saw ‘run down house’ and I pictured ‘run down house’. Poe spent all of that effort trying to communicate exactly how the house was run down, all that time trying to make sure that his readers had the same picture as him in their heads.
And I just don’t get it.
So… sorry, man. My bad.
I spend my life wondering where all my time has gone, where those important pieces of paper have disappeared to and where the hell did I put my phone???
The other part of my time I spend consumed with envy while watching people to whom organisation comes with apparent ease. You know the ones. They have a diary (probably colour coded) and legitimately tell you that they have to slot you in to their calendar. The ones who have a drawer for everything and who can tell you to hold on two tics while they unearth a file from 4 years ago and it’s simply a matter of flicking down to some (possibly colour coded) folder instead of a search and rescue operation possibly involving a few sniffer dogs and dust bunnies that have started to grow sentience.
Sometimes I wonder if these Organised Humans are the same species as me. They obviously understand something I don’t (and have probably made a note of it in one of their thousands of notebooks) Every now and again I try to copy them, to mimic their behaviour in the hopes that I will assimilate into their culture. But I’m obviously missing something important. Though I buy calendars and make notes, it never seems to culminate in me being organised. It’s just more pieces of paper for me to lose in the pile of things-that-are-very-probably-important.
Most sports I understand. You run, you jump, you swim, you get the ball or puck or person into or out of the thing. There’s a logic to it and a certainty that if I had even a modicum of physical talent (which I don’t) combined with a ridiculous amount of practice (something I’m too busy tapping at my keyboard to even contemplate) then I could do it.
Golf is…not like that.
I understand the rules and, when given the chance, I can play a mean round of mini golf, but the proper kind?
They can’t even see the hole they’ve got to get the ball into! How do they do it? How can you measure strength and aim well when you’ve only got a vague direction and a million traps in the way??
I suspect witchcraft.
So can anyone explain these things to me? Am I alone in this? Is there anything in your life that you simply don’t understand?