They left out the starting bit and I am lost.
I have summarized the part at the end as having “happily ever after” in a heart. (I think there’s probably a bluebird in there too.) That’s what’s on the last page. Happily ever after isn’t actually the end of the story, but it serves as a relatively flexible yet still solid place marker. We know we got somewhere.
There is a whole book or play which comes before the happily ever after lines. That’s all the bits about where the girl falls in love and then out of love and there are diverse alarums and mistaken identities (Maybe that’s only in Shakespeare?) I know this part exists because a zillion dollar entertainment business exists to make the movies and publish the books.
You know what is absent? The starting bit. There are zero dollars given to detailing the starting bit. I am starting to think the starting bit is inherently problematic.
Consider. I am going on a date tonight. I know that it is a date because I am being picked up, he has a plan and he’s buying my dinner. (Please also consider that I am the sort of woman who uses yes/no elements to figure out what constitutes a date.)
This date was planned, well at least the location was chosen, on an earlier date. So, that’s actually two dates. There is also a date planned for next week. In a grammatical sense, I am dating this guy. We cover every tense of the verb date. Even I am confident that one does not use participles to define dating.
It’s all a bit fuzzy. I mean it’s me and dating, so there’s a level of fuzzy that exists (and this is why I have checklists), but also he was a friend and he’s still a friend, and now he’s a friend I go on dates with. I should tell you he’s working hard to make friends with my dog and he petted one of my cats.
So, we have the end bit (with the bluebird). We have the middle bit, with the falling in and out of love and mistaken identity (or maybe that’s just Shakespeare). But, before you get to the middle, long before there is any sort of end (which could just as easily involve sobbing into a tub of Ben and Jerry’s cookie dough ice cream) there has to be a starting point.
There’s somewhere beyond the part where he unexpectedly kisses me in the middle of a TV show we were both watching; somewhere around the time he tries to make friends with my dog (I’m waiting to see how long it takes him to just buy dog bones) and before any of the bits about telling your friends or showing up to work functions together and making plans for three months from now. There’s a whole starting bit. And it’s missing.
And it’s confusing.
Really, I can’t think of why Shakespeare couldn’t work this in.