Monday, August 20, 2012

Summer Love and Other Buried Treasures

Summer love... long nights on the beach... holding hands while gazing at stars... kissing while the waves lap at our feet... clinging to one another in the shadow of the diving board...


I am so not making any of that up. That's all true. Not only is it true, but, the guy? Yeah, we stayed together after school resumed. Of course, he had graduated; I was the only one going back to school. And he had no worries about me meeting competition in the hallways (remember the nuns?). So staying together... that seemed kind of easy. He didn't go to college, instead taking a full time day job. I headed into senior year, doing homework right after school, so we still had nights and weekends. there was nothing in the autumn air to pull us apart. Except...


I have to confess, looking back over the years... the romance was doomed. From the very beginning, I wasn't being entirely faithful to him. My heart had already begun turning toward someone else, someone tough and determined, brave and smart. Resourceful. Charismatic. Someone... someone.... terrified of snakes...


**SIGH***




Indiana Jones....

**SIGH**

Okay. Wait. Before you judge, you  need to understand that back in the days of Indy's introduction I was working at movie theater (a single screen movie theater) and we ran that movie for SIX MONTHS. From June to December. Seriously. That's a relationship. I spent three nights a week with Indy, and all day Saturday. And he never, ever let me down. He was never late, always made me smile, and never made me cry.

Okay, so he wasn't real. So he was a made up guy with an irrational fear of snakes. So what my real boyfriend was 6'2", blonde hair, blue eyes, with a killer smile (also true). No matter how wonderful the real guy was... the guy I still love to this day is Indiana Jones. Man, Indy would just stand and glower, and the minute he settled that Stetson on his head.... *swoon* you just know he's going to help good triumph over evil.

So why do I still love Indy, when the blue-eyed-guy is relegated to dim memory status? Well, truth be told, it's for the same reasons the relationship with my boyfriend lasted past the summer. It wasn't the good looks - though that was there. It wasn't the conversational skills - I remember Indy's dialogue better than boyfriend's. It was the fact that both of those guys stood for something. They both had a strong moral center, a concept of right over wrong and the determination to make sure right prevailed. And that moral center? That belief in something bigger than the self, that's one of the key character attributes that shows they'll stick around when school threatens to get in the way. They'll understand when homework or studying has to take priority, and they won't resent your involvement in school sports (though they might get cranky over Glee Club, you never know).

Now as the summer draws to a close, those of you reading this may have a guy or a gal and may be wondering, will this last? Hey, I could be wrong. But my theory is if your current heartthrob is the sort to stand up for the little guy and has a solid sense of justice, you've got a good chance the relationship will last well beyond the first bell.

A healthy fear of snakes is also a bonus.

But hey, clearly if I fell in love with Indy way back at the beginning, I'm a seriously old broad. So you tell me: what characteristic do you think a person would possess that hints at a relationship lasting?

8 comments:

Kimberly said...

Jen,
Apparently I'm a pretty old broad myself because , too, loved me some Indy. The first movie, at that.
I have to agree with Lorie's post where she talked about "world-shrinking communication tools" and how that might have helped relationships back in the day. So, that's my answer to this riddle. I think teens today do stand a better chance of maintaining a relationship past the summer fling.
Way, way back in the day, I had to wait weeks for my snail mail communication, and by that time, my fickle heart had moved on. LOL.
But, those summer romances do last...in our memories. And they're usually good memories. :-)
I'm glad my Indy was there for you as well.

Lorie Langdon said...

Hi Jen,
I love picturing you sweeping up stale popcorn and being so transported by Indy's heroics that you stand in the same spot for half the movie! LOL!
I agree that strong moral character and believing in something bigger than one's self can be a positive predictor for a successful relationship. I think if a guy is transparent and honest from the beginning, that's a good start as well. ;)
Great post!

Melissa Landers said...

BACK OFF, JEN! HARRISON FORD IS MINE! (He just doesn't know it yet.)

Loree Huebner said...

I can see our age difference - I loved Indy when he was Han Solo...ha!

Jennifer McAndrews said...

@Kim, you will never be an old broad! you have far too much energy and love of life. And yes, I'm certain today's tech is making a huge difference in relationships (though nothing will replace real life togetherness, ya know?)
@Loris -- ouch! thanks for the popcorn flashback! lol!
@Mel -- g'head and grab Harrison. I need Indy. Something about that tweed and leather combo...
@Loree -- ahhh, Han. A whole different sort of love for the classic rogue. I've written one or two characters that fit the Han mold ; )

Beth Miller said...

I love this post, Jen! Now where do I find this upstanding guy with the pretty blue eyes who rescues kittens trapped in trees and likes stargazing on a quiet beach...?

Jennifer McAndrews said...

@Beth, if I find any more like him, I'll send him your way! (though I'm really not sure about the kittens thing.... puppies, yes, kittens... I don't remember. Indy would save them though!)

Micki Gibson said...

I'm with Loree. I loved him as Han Solo. (I could have totally taken a wrench to C3PO when he interrupted the kiss in ESB.) I like my scoundrels. Han Solo, Rhett Butler...sigh...those guys.