My best guy friend, the same that has incessantly told me a thousand times to start to write a blog, once told me and I’ll never forget: “What you need is Javier Bardem.”
He told me this with the calm certainty of those who just had the simplest epiphany and see perfectly clearly what you can’t see yourself.
He was sitting across from me, on a little wooden chair, in that shoebox where I moved for 6 months after I got separated from my husband and before I got divorced. It was six years ago. I was 31 years old, and I had no fucking idea what to do next with my life, and those words of wisdom hold as true today as they did then. Unfortunately, I haven’t found Javier Bardem. Or he hasn’t found me, however you want to spin it.
Obviously, I don’t know if the actual Javier Bardem is what I need, but he was then the most perfect representation of what I needed from a relationship, from a man, and my friend couldn’t put it better.
I was married for seven years to an extraordinary man; kind, funny, worldly, hard working, smart and adoring, and I had just decided I needed to get separated because I wasn’t completely happy. I couldn’t, for the life of me, figure out why I wasn’t happy, but I knew in the bottom of my heart, I wasn’t.
Sitting there at that shitty studio, having my friend patiently listening to me and my seemingly unsolvable dilemma, apparently brought up this simple revelation to him: “You need Javier Bardem. How could we not see this before? It’s not that complicated, really. You are a strong woman, who likes to call the shots and takes the lead role of her life… but you don’t want to do this all the time, because you are such a girl, too! You need to be the girl, and you need a guy that can be the exact opposite: strong and manly, but also soft when needed. You need Javier Bardem!”
Five years later, here I am still, and no Javier Bardem in sight. I have met men who have the strong, manly side (usually accompanied by other traits not necessarily welcome and characteristic of excess testosterone), and I have met men who have the soft side (ultimately succumbing to my innate ability to take the lead) but I haven’t found that combination. And I can’t help but wonder, where the fuck is Javier Bardem? In these five years of living the single life, after relationships, flings, dates, dry spells, and everything in between, I have accumulated stories that range from amusingly exhilarating, to painfully heartbreaking. And thus, following my best guy-friend advice, here they are. Hopefully, one of them will touch you, who read them, and bring a little bit of light to the dating clusterfuck we live in, if you need it. Or at the very worst, make you smile.
Here it goes, for Felix.