Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Expectations Vs. Reality

There's a nice scene in 500 Days of Summer when the screen splits in two.


If you haven't seen the film, it's when the main character, Tom, goes to his ex-girlfriend's house for a party. On one half of the screen, you've got his expectations playing out and on the other, what actually happens in reality.

It's nicely done, and if you're anything like me, it'll send your stomach lurching for him whether it's the first or fiftieth time you've watched it.

I think it's the way the expectations and reality converge at various points and then split off, just like they do whenever your thoughts have time to wonder each day. Whether it's playing the lottery and realising you haven't won (again), or just sitting opposite a nice looking bloke on the tube, catching their eye once, and building an entire situation in your head where they follow you off the train at your stop and ask you for your number.

Of course, they don't - you get off the train without a word and never see them again. But the happy scenarios are always there keeping us entertained on a boring journey, and occasionally - very occasionally - playing out in real life in the most spectacularly perfect way possible.

It's a bit like when you've been thinking about a bloke who caught your attention the other week and what would happen if you bumped into him, then you get to the top of the stairs at Kings Cross Station and - bloody hell - there he is. Standing right there.

This is it, you think, that moment when the stars align and you catch each others eye and end up giggling on the concourse, sharing a backwards glance when one of you eventually drags themselves away, phone number in pocket. This is the start of something grand.

You look over, try to meet his eye while running your fingers through the front bit of your hair. You keep looking to check it's him; that you're not about to go "Oh hello, it's Bloke From Last Week, isn't it? Nice to see you again!" to a complete stranger.

You pause your step and your eyes meet, your mouth opens and the very first inkling of an almost-"Hi" comes out of your mouth - but his phone is held to his ear, and he's looking around as if he's trying to find someone. He hasn't recognised or registered you. The moment is gone, and you carry on walking and look back, kicking yourself for not trying harder. Definitely him.

Bugger.

And just like that, it's back to reality.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Love love love everything about this blog.

From the anonymous poster who upset you a few blogs ago.

Sprinkledwords said...

I love that movie so, so much. How annoying that situation didn't pan out. Next time. :)

Brennig said...

You know, I was standing on the concourse of Kings Cross station recently, when a cute girl I hadn't seen before...

Blonde said...

Er, amazing. Is it bad that every fibre of my being wants this to be the start of an epic love story?! (You're going back to Kings Cross several times a week, right? Just in case?!)

pinkjellybaby said...

I LOVE a good love story, you have to find him.....

I think I should write my love story because it's a little like this but I'm scared I won't do it justice.

Katie Khan / Awkward Situations For Girls said...

Go back. At the same time each day. Or at least at the same time each day each week, for a few weeks. That's not weird, right?

Ellie said...

Yes that is it. Thank you for letting me know I'm not alone in this experience and even the young and hip play the mind games. Makes me feel less of a jack ass for something I have yet to write on. X

Please Don't Eat With Your Mouth Open said...

Anonymous - Thank you for coming back.

Sprinkledwords - I love it too. Never gets old. Maybe tomorrow, maybe tomorrow...

Brennig - Ha, nice try!

Blonde - Absolutely. All this weekend's plans are henceforth cancelled. (any excuse)

PJB - I think you should write your story too. Give us all a bit of hope :)

Katie - I was thinking of doing that but also holding some form of Golf Sale style placard that reads "HELLO, LOOK, I'M HERE, TALK TO ME"

Ellie - It happens every blummin' day in my book. Minds, eh? Who'd have 'em.

Mealie said...

I've had these weird ones before. Spotting someone in the street and thinking - I'm going to go out with them - and then doing exactly that a year later. Ok *sorry to disappoint* he turned out to be a boring bastard, but still - the idea is romantic, right?

Having very recently become single I think romance is a mindfuck. The it-was-so-romantic-when-we-met cliche got in the way of you-don't-actually-like-me-proper ... 2 years later I'm now trying to sort out a new place.

London-Lass said...

What you after?

(sorry that was in response to your `What you got?' sub-question under your `Leave your comment' title)

(but, anyway)

Yes, I've had these scenarios played out many times in my head. And, whilst I am definitely not a teenager anymore (just nipped off to the loo to check - yep, definitely no young bird here), I still get distracted from time to time.

I just like to think it's your brain letting off a bit of steam - us creative types are nowt but tortured geniuses after all ;)

JUST ME said...

This is such my fight - my imagination is insane and I can create a whole marriage before I've actually even said hi to someone.

I think it's all about walking firmly in reality with a few minutes allotted to beautiful daydreams. ...Of Joseph Gordon Levitt. ;)

 

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