An essay I wrote and posted on my Facebook page last September. Chanced upon it again as I was surfing timeline and thought it worthy of tweaking and reposting here.
Prelude to the piece I hope to write soon, called “Our Love in Fictions.” Don’t worry–that one has nothing to do with the fantastic Mr. Westwick.
Because he’s gorgeous.
Because he’s immensely talented.
Because he’s British.
Because his eyes smolder even in the magazine photographs and what more in person?
Because every single newsbit and hearsay you’ve collected of him says he’s nice, very friendly, very charming, but still with that edge of bad boy to keep everyone interested.
Because he plays Chuck Bass, everybody’s favorite bad boy, and what more reason that you need?
Because he’s perfect.
Because he’s not perfect.
Because he’s unattainable.
Because it’s easier to hang your heart on someone you know will never know you exist, will never make you feel un-pretty, will never smile at you then turn away and fall for someone else, will never wave at you from across a crowded hallway, will never be just out of reach.
Because it’s easier to wear adoration for him like a pair of horse’s blinders, helping you ignore the handsome boys around you that your friends are brave enough to fall for. You would too, only you don’t want to because you know, you know that can only end badly–reams of paper wasted on scratched-out poems and sad songs and your poor eyes, already too small to catch a guy’s notice, shrunk and swollen shut with minutes-hours-days of crying and crying and crying.
Because as much as Chuck and Blair’s romance is intense and messy and all-consuming and complicated, at least it’s a romance. At least someone is saying “I will always love you,” with a kiss to the forehead, a benediction, a fairytale with a darker flavor for a darker generation. It’s better than nothing, because it’s everything, and for a second you can forget that you can’t have it, that you’re not there.
Because it’s better to ogle glossy publicity pics than look longingly at Facebook photos of the girls everyone knows with the boys everyone wants and crying because you would give anything, anything to be one of those girls. But you’re not, because to them you are never enough. There is never enough fire, enough spark, and so they walk away while you burn.
Because everyone will understand. Because being weird over a celebrity is forgivable compared to the twenty million other versions of weird you’ve been that have almost cost you your friends.
Because even if Ed Westwick himself would think you a freaky stalker weirdo, what would it matter? You won’t see him everyday. It won’t damage your reputation in the slightest. Eventually you can get over it and move on and laugh and tell people about how once upon a time, as a little girl, you scared a celebrity out of his wits by being such a fan you were a fanatic.
Because it’s easier. Because it’s simpler. Because by buying a magazine you can “have” him, all for nothing above two hundred pesos. And you’ll have him for as long as the pages don’t tear or get waterlogged or termite-eaten.
Because by being a celebrity he is so far away that you will never be able to fool yourself into believing in some fantasy of friendship and closeness and comfortable interaction. With him, it will be okay to be awkward and stumble over your words and blush too much and ask for a picture and gush that “You’re absolutely gorgeous.” because he’s probably heard that a million times from a million other girls and he’s already so used to it it’s gone from “weird and scary” to “vaguely cute how absolutely terrified some of them look.”
Because there is no chance of him ever talking to you. There is no risk of wishing for that green square to show up in the corner of his photo in your Facebook chat box. Neither is there a risk of the agonizing hours you will spend never clicking that photo, even if that green light–so Gatsby-esque–is on and beckoning. You never answer that call, because you don’t know what to say.
Because you don’t have to be beautiful to feel like you “deserve” him, since as a celebrity he’s somewhat public property and anyone can “have” a piece of his public face.
Because you don’t have to be beautiful, period. You don’t have to try too hard and fall short.
Because most of all, even if he gets married someday and has kids and lives a “normal” life (as normal as one can live in tinseltown), he can never ever break your heart because you always knew there was never a chance of his being yours. Because someone who isn’t really real–and we’re not saying Ed Westwick isn’t a real person, just that his celebrity self, on those billboards and in those magazines, isn’t really him and thus isn’t really real–can’t hurt you, can’t win your heart then break it just by ignoring you, by liking someone else, by making you feel…something less.
Because he’s safe, and the “real” (up close, in your campus, right across the room) boys aren’t and sometimes you feel never will be.