If you don’t know what I’m referring to in the title, then this blog might not interest you much, except for the personal stories I will detail for you. If you do, then you and I are already friends. I love to read, and I probably spend too much time in the world of pages and printed words, but I really love it. It started when I was younger, and as I got older, I grew into older books…and I don’t just mean for more mature audiences. I went back in time. I had to read Northanger Abbey in college, but somehow I refused to read and still managed to get a passing grade on the tests. I’m sad that I did. Sometimes I boycott things just because I want to be difficult…and everyone was raving about Jane Austen at the time, and I like to be different. So, I ignored any Jane Austen novels or movies…until I saw Pride & Prejudice with Matthew MacFadyen and Kiera Knightly and fell in love with the complexity, sweetness, and propriety in the story. So, last year I read through the top five Jane Austen books: Pride & Prejudice, Sense & Sensibility, Persuasion, Mansfield Park, and Emma. I didn’t get to Northanger Abbey…I still have a bad taste in my mouth with that one, but I will try again when I get home.
Anyway, back to the point of this blog. I have decided that most people I know can fit within the characters of these books. I mostly spend my time, like Eliza Bennet, drawing likeness between real people and the fictional characters here…but it’s just a silliness and I don’t put a ton of stock into it. I have taken to studying the guys that I’ve dated, and I’ve decided that I mostly end up dating the villains. Maybe if I eventually dated a guy who matched one of the heroes, I would be fine (although, Col. Brandon and Captain Wentworth don’t really suit my taste…and Mr. Darcy, though he is an amazing character, I myself am prone to being introspective and stay-at-home, so would need the encouragement from my husband rather than being depended on it from myself. But, mostly, the guys so far have been a mixture of Mr. Collinses, Mr. Willoughby’s and Mr. Elton’s.
Now, the Mr. Collinses and Mr. Elton’s are strikingly similar, except Mr. Elton is prone to insulting when his wishes aren’t met, while Mr. Collins prides himself on being able to rise above disappointment by moving on to another object quickly. Mr. Willoughby is generous with his feelings until something better comes along, or he finds himself obligated to leaving the relationship for some reason other than sentiment.
One or two of these is no big deal. But when the bulk of your relationships (and even first encounters) have been discovered to be of these sort, it gets tiring. I’m not sure why Mr. Collins continually finds me in the faces of different young men (even older ones…yeah, I have some long tales)…and Mr. Willoughby is equally hard to face after a couple times. But I am not the sort of woman who can just give in and enter a relationship with Mr. Collins. It would be completely insensible.
Maybe I shouldn’t really include particular stories. I could, and they would be humorous, but they would be kind of detrimental to the reputations of some men I know. So, I will hold myself back from sharing them here and just resign to say that I am quite through with these grim characters. I have decided that I would be most suited for a Mr. Knightly, or an Edmund Bertram. If you are still in the dark as to who these people are and their characteristics, I believe wikipedia has a pretty good synopsis of each of them…or maybe you should just read the books and find out for yourself. You won’t be sorry.
I will conclude by saying that Charlotte Lucas marries Mr. Collins in Pride & Prejudice because she has no grand plans of romance or any hope of finding anyone better. I am not such a person. Though I am not prone to following my emotions first, I am still a very romantic person. Nothing pleases me more than the hero and heroine coming together at the end of a long dramatic tale. I also do not think that I should just settle for the next guy who comes along. That is completely wrong. Besides, even if there will be no one better out there, I have Jesus who is more to me than any other person could be. But I still have hope, and while I still have hope, I cannot resign myself to Mr. Collins, Mr. Elton, Mr. Wickham, Mr. Crawford, or any of the other silly men who Jane chose to make the butt of her jokes.