February 15, 2012 § 19 Comments
Valentine’s night was spent with a girlfriend who had gone to a lot of effort to cook a delicious supper before we went to the cinema, and that felt lovely. On the way, we saw couples through the windows of various restaurants, which managed to feel both lovely and unlovely at the same time. They all looked about seventeen, sitting there with single red roses between them on the tables and doubtless brimming with things to say to each other, unlike other sorts of couples in restaurants who are a little older and have fuck all to say to each other at all.
Carnage was what we went to see and, oh, how fitting it was on Valentine’s night, to watch middle-class politeness disintegrate before our eyes; the marriages of two couples exposed beneath the civilised facade of art books and coffee tables to be the mayhem of anger and misery that they really were. At one moment, a husband speaks bitterly of how little young couples know of what’s in store once they get married, once they have kids; how they don’t have a fucking clue. How it’s all a complete nightmare.
So it was, on Valentine’s night, I managed, for once, to feel good about being a paltry plankton after all.
Woke up this morning and the feeling hasn’t lasted, thank God, in a way, because while I do know carnage-marriages like that, I also have my Standard Bearers whose marriages I know fine well are not like that at all. But the film certainly got me through the business of seeing all those doe-eyed young couples with their odourless single red roses and dizzy hope and looks of love so laden, the kind of which I can merely remember and, even then, only sort of.