Two very, very good friends of mine hooked up today. Yes, to each other. And no, they are not of the same sex. Not right now, any way.
Although I am committed- happily- for almost four years now, I find the proces of two people getting together no less mystifying than any of the skeptics. I mean, taking the two aforementioned people as a case study (yes, you can take me out of a B-School, but you can't take the B-School out of me), I and the rest of the world were waiting with bated breath for about six months now for these two to FINALLY get together and give us the inevitable treat. Seriously, if you thought waiting ten years for Ross and Rachel to get together was a test of patience, wait till you see these two!
This situation is a very clear reflection of what happened with me- when I was discovering the joys and the initial highs of love four years ago (the lows would come later, and, honestly, I wouldn't miss them for the world: you can't have a better test for a relationship), everybody around me too as waiting for us to wake up and start going around. I always thought that this is a very interesting situation- isn't it weird how, when it's someone else's life, solutions and answers and paths are so spectacularly clear to all of us, and yet, when it comes to our own lives, we get miraculously enveloped in a fog, and take an astonishingly long time weighing out the nitty-gritties?
And while we are at it, why is it 'nitty-gritties', and not 'nitties-gritties'? Never mind. I digress.
I think, as people, we are shockingly lacking in objectivity. That, above religion, fraternity, love and greed is what unites us as humans- our total and absolute lack of objectivity. I have always thought that as one looks at someone else's life, all he sees are two adjacent rectangles, one black, one white, only separated by a very thin line. It is only as we get closer, that that line becomes wider and wider, until we realise that is an equally large rectangle made entirely of grey. And that is why, when it is our life we are thinking about, we understand the complexity of situations as we can appreciate life's grey-ness. Otherwise, of course, as far as we are concerned, everything is black and white- so why is it taking them SOOO long to hook up?
It is also interesting to see how similar the process of a business deal is to our thoughts when we are considering someone for a relationship. After all, that is also no less than a deal. I mean, think about it:
- You take an equally long time, sometimes more
- There are various rounds of deliberations
- A million negotiations ("okay, fine, I'll try and remember your birthday if you let me go out for drinks with my friends")
- Numerous different reports are released to the public from numerous different sources ("She told me nothing is official!", "But he said everything is!")
- PR plays a paramount role ("Listen, I think he is a really nice guy. You should consider him more seriously")
- When the two concerned parties finally "sign on the dotted line", there are both official statements released, and a big, joyous celebration.
- The share prices of both parties increase manifold- the guy suddenly seems safer and nicer, the girl seems more desirable (we guys have an inexplicable tendency to suddenly find someone else's property more desirable- psychiatrist call it an offshoot of the forbidden apple theory; I believe it is simply a case of "There must be something he saw which we missed!").
Yes, there goes the MBA in me talking. Management, you see, is a lifelong occupation.
But then, so is love. And this one goes out to everyone who has ever looked at someone sitting next to them and thought, "hey- my interest rate in you is rocketing upwards. How about a merger?"