June 4, 2007

“Oh my GOD. You’re SO Carrie Bradshaw.”

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No, I’m really not. Alright, so I’m living in NYC this summer (aka Camp Cornell) and writing about dating—but that’s it. I do not particularly want or aspire to be a one-dimensional fictional character. Plus, Carrie ended up with Big and ending up with an ex of mine would be like wearing jean shorts in public: something that was desirable once upon a time, but is now completely inappropriate and wrong on so many levels.

But back to the Carrie thing. Yes, the show has given me and the rest of our generation something to daydream about. I mean, what girl doesn’t covet Carrie’s single life in the Big City? When we trade in our Cornell ID’s for summer or post-grad jobs in the Big Apple, those of us in the Sex and the City School of Entirely Unreasonable Expectations envision a life replete with Sunday Brunch obsession sessions, money to burn, and gorgeous uptown digs where we can sit and write our very own self-indulgent dating columns in a world where people actually read the Times’ trashier, more interesting stepchildren. Although I have an apartment in New York City, a sex & dating blog and enough money to spring for Banana Republic over Forever 21 now and then, that’s where the Carrie similarities end. Carrie was older, had wrinkles and distractingly horselike features, smoked infinitely more cigarettes than me, ate greasy Chinese frequently (yet never exercised and remained at a comfortable 95 pounds), and had some pretty awful hair phases. Carrie never had a virus on her computer that sent out 561 email messages about penis enlargement nor did she have a breakup that shoe shopping and knocking a vase of flowers on the ground couldn’t remedy. She generally failed to arrive at conclusions or make any insightful statements in her columns, either, and I’m pretty sure that “I couldn’t help but wonder…” is not an acceptable way to introduce the main idea of a piece of writing. Every. Single. Time.

The big reason I don’t aspire to be Carrie: she ended up with the wrong guy. While I understand that this is a completely fictional show, it wasn’t very nice of Darren Starr to put the whole idea of Mr. Big into our heads. During my freshman and sophomore years at Cornell, I was in love with a boy in a way that made me believe nothing would ever replace it. When he dumped me on my ass junior year, I spent the next eight months unhealthily fixated on the idea that he was my Mr. Big. Not only did I believe that we were the love of each others’ lives and it would just take him a little while to understand this and return to me, but I also used the TV character to justify this guy’s behavior. He’d always talked down to me, had a too-close relationship with his mother, refused to deal with conflict and never really made me laugh. But it was okay because he was a lot like Big.

Several mini-relationships, many (MANY) hookups and hundreds of bottles of booze later, I at last realized he was indeed not “my Big.” He was never coming back and, frankly, I didn’t want him to. If I really were Cornell’s version of Carrie Bradshaw, I’d have gone out for $25 martinis with my girlfriends. I’d have sat down that night and penned a column about the joys of being liberated from a long, arduous period of grieving over my lost love. Instead, I briefly contemplated listening to a different Carrie’s advice: taking a Louisville Slugger to the ex in question’s headlights and slashing his tires for one last hurrah.

Of course, I reconsidered (as I am not writing from a jail cell a la Paris Hilton) and I instead chose to celebrate by putting on a slutty top and going out for a few (or eight) rounds of Bud Light at Rulloff’s. And then I got laid by the dude who’s been texting me all week. And it felt fabulous.