15 May 2010

Day 49: Smoke and Mirrors

Smoke and Mirrors by Neil Gaiman. ISBN: 9780380789023.

 The Wedding Present, pages 3-16.

This is an amazing Picture of Dorian Gray-esque short story about a couple who receives a short story as a wedding present.  The short story is the opposite of their marriage; the story couple getting progressively unhappier as the real couple continues living in bliss.

There's a lot of appeal in those kind of stories, those striking and enigmatic "what-if" stories.  It's particularly natural to play the what-if game in relationships, regardless of how good they are.  Part of me wonders if that's why so many relationships fall apart; one party always wonders if maybe they could just be happier with someone else.  I'll admit that I wonder which version of The Wedding Present I'm living.  Is this the happy version or the miserable one?

Well, it's not over yet, is it?  It's been difficult having the relationship I do with my fiance; on the other hand if we weren't together right now, I might be having an even tougher time without his emotional support.  Or maybe if we hadn't gotten together in the first place I'd be on my way to a doctorate's degree in library science and not worrying about the economy.  Or I could be living with my mother and yelling at her every day.  I don't know.

That's why I think it's so important to try my hardest to keep this relationship together until I know it's over.  I won't know if it was the good story or the bad one, so I work to make it the good one.  And I beat my fiance over the head to make him work at it too.  So far we're doing okay.  I do sometimes wonder how the other Amy Campbell and her fiance are doing.

This post was originally written on April 24, 2010 to give me a break, allow me to be sick, make time for packing and moving, or some other excuse where I can't sit in front of a computer all day.

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