Today's blog post is dedicated to my newest reader, Ryan. Ryan has described my posts as "slow-motion car wrecks" full of "crazy ramblings" that induce "watering eyes" and "inner ear-based balance problems." Finally! Someone who gets me.
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According to Dictionary.com, the word comparison can be* defined in the following way:
Rhetoric. The considering of two things with regard to some characteristic that is common to both, as the likening of a hero to a lion in courage.
* I say can be as there are also five other definitions of the word, none of which is as relevant to my point here BECAUSE AS FAR AS YOU KNOW I HAVE ONE and anyway this is just TOO DAMN MANY definitions for one word, so please make up your mind, Dictionary.com.
And thus begins our little lesson in comparison:
On the left? The Porcupine. Inspirer of this blog. Will jab you with his quills! On the right? Luke Skywalker. Inspirer of a legion of Jedi Knights. Will slice you up with his lightsaber! You will never see these two people at a party together. Why? Well, besides the fact that Luke Skywalker is just a movie character and isn't at all real (Do I really have to explain this to you??), neither one of them has any time to go to some stupid-ass party since they both are way too busy saving the universe. Which, of course, I would be doing too if I didn't have to spend all my time sitting here writing in this damn blog for you people. Although I am not yet convinced my doing so won't totally end up saving lives one day. BLOG M.D.
Let's do a quick review:
Luke: Humble beginnings on small-ish planet Tatooine. Two suns! Carcinoma as National Pastime! The Porcupine: Equally humble beginnings on small-ish island. Only one sun, but that's all this particular blogger needs to get carcinoma up the wazoo. Snow White stands next to me so she can look tan! I'm rendered completely invisible on ice planet Hoth! SPF 597 cowers before me! I will get a sunburn. On a rainy day. Wearing a turtleneck sweater. While I am inside my apartment.
Luke: Grew up into a great leader of men. Jedi Master. Fearless protector of worlds. Tragically bad hair. Which in no way hampers his ability to lead but is still majorly unfortunate. Use The Force, Luke. For a haircut. The Porcupine: Has also grown into a great leader. Honest. Principled. Intelligent and aware. Leads by example. Makes those around him better by his mere presence in their lives. Never fails to consider others first. Makes continuous sacrifices for the well-being of everyone else in his universe. Awesome hair. Sure, his universe may not be as vast as, say, Luke's – whose is, to be technical, the actual universe – but that doesn't lessen in any way The Porcupine's drive and dedication and determination to protect the lives and worlds around him. (Also? The Porcupine possesses two additional great leadership qualities known as "Mind-Numbing Hotness" and "A Traffic-Stopping Butt." Drooooooools.)
Trying to build a life with someone like this isn't exactly easy. Which is why – pay attention here – Luke Skywalker never got himself a woman. (This blog's favorite Chris, upon an earlier discussion of this post, said, "He never got the girl because the girl WAS HIS SISTER." Oh, like Princess Leia* was the only girl in the universe. STOP TRYING TO RUIN MY BLOG POST WITH "FACTS.") Anyway, can you even imagine how complicated things with someone like this would be?:
Luke Skywalker's woman: Hey, babe! Maybe tonight we can...
Luke: Sorry – gotta go have a lightsaber duel with Darth Vader. The whole universe is depending on me!
Luke: Ooh. Also bad. Then I've gotta join the Rebel Alliance and go blow up the Death Star. Millions of lives are at stake!
Luke Skywalker's woman: You never have any time for me.
Luke (practicing his lightsaber moves): I'm sorry, hon. Did you say something?
Luke Skywalker's woman (scowling): The Force sucks Bantha butt.
*Speaking of Princess Leia, let's take a quick pause in the spirit of today's post to note how she and I compare. Not in the "I'm like The Porcupine's sister" kind of way (THAT IS CALLED "FLOWERS IN THE ATTIC" or "GROSS"), but in the even more profoundly important way where we totally have the same wardrobe:
Anyway. Me? I don't have to imagine what the above complications are like, because I live my own version of them every day. And as if that wasn't already enough, life with The Porcupine is about to get even MORE complicated. There's a big, messy storm brewing, and I'm
worried about our ability to withstand it. He's worried too. Because he knows just like I do that all of his qualities that
serve him so well when it comes to helping other people – unselfishness, an overwhelming sense of responsibility, the tendency to always put himself last – are the very same qualities that often aren't so healthy for him. (And they don't exactly get us anywhere, either.) These same things
that make him an exceptional man are the things that often render him a handicapped one, too. He can't seem to draw a line. He will give and give and give of himself until he's so depleted he has nothing left for his own life. He will stop taking care of himself almost entirely in his effort to take care of everyone else. But what good is he to anyone if he ends up losing
his hand himself in the process? He does understand this. Intellectually. We talk about it at length. But caught up in the swirl of his current circumstances, he feels he has no choice but to keep doing what he's doing.
So all of this adds up to it not being easy to love him sometimes. There have been more days than I can count where I've been left feeling futile and wholly insignificant from knowing the helplessness he feels – from watching him put his life on hold for everyone else, which in turn puts us on hold – and knowing I can't seem to do anything about it. How do I do for someone who isn't comfortable doing for himself? How do I help him find a way to help himself? Because our future together hinges on his ability to do this. (And no, the Jedi Mind Trick doesn't work. DON'T THINK I HAVEN'T TRIED IT.) And it's an internal struggle for me too, wondering if I'm selfish, wondering if he thinks I don't understand what makes him tick. Because I do. I don't want to change who he is. I never have. I am his biggest champion. I just want to make some room for a little balance.
And this storm that's brewing? It's coming in the form of his responsibilities and the scope of his universe and what he's being asked to give of himself all increasing suddenly by about a hundredfold. Starting immediately. This is no small order for a man already struggling under the weight of his existing load of these same things. Any semblance of balance we might have still had is quickly going the way of my youthful optimism. If he couldn't see his way through everything before, how in the world will he be able to do it now? HELP ME, OBI-WAN KENOBI OR I SWEAR I'M GONNA KILL SOMEONE. On the one hand, I'm proud of him. But I'm always proud of him. He was born to change the world in ways I could never hope to. But on the other hand? Why am I giving one crap about the universe since the universe CLEARLY HATES ME? All of these things at once? And now another thing? Any one of them on its own would not be pretty but would still probably be manageable enough. But combined? Could anyone manage it all? Can The Porcupine? Can I? Can we?
In the end, I'm not sure how it's all going to go down:
And to stay on point (Okay. Seriously? You're almost at the end of this thing and you STILL believe I have one??), comparatively speaking, the first option is likened to my hope (fading), while the second is likened to my overwhelming sense of doom (growing exponentially). But regardless of how this ends up, in the meantime somebody better be baking me THIS on my next birthday:
Which has nothing to do with anything except that this whole damn situation SUCKS almost as much as THIS POST and I'm a nice girl and I like cake and this post is filled with Star Wars symbolism and so at the very least I should get some freaking DEATH STAR CAKE out of the deal.
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Luke Skywalker: I'm Luke Skywalker. I'm here to rescue you!
Princess Leia: Do you have any birthday cake?
Luke Skywalker: No, but...
Princess Leia: Get out.
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One more note to Ryan: If you never come back here ever again, I will totally understand.