Jane Austen: Modern Relationship Advice 101*

I’m currently reading Jane Austen’s Emma and yesterday I stumbled upon the following excerpt:

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Now, I am slightly irritated by Emma’s character in the book for dropping this otherwise very wise-sounding piece of advice at this point of the plot, since she’s trying to manipulate her friend out of a possibly favorable (?) coupling. [In case you’ve already read the book no spoilers, please.] Nevertheless, I think that if you take it out of context, it could easily apply to any modern relationship or dating dilemma.

And yes, it might sound slightly harsh or maybe one-solution-fits-all but it is also truthful: If you have to overthink whether you are actually interested in someone then you’re probably not. Hesitating is not a good sign.

(Unless it concerns a dark chocolate and Guiness cake. Which is unlikely.)

Roald Dahl agrees  – and you know how appreciated men’s perspectives are in this blog:

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This tiny excerpt hit home also because it reminded of a discussion with my best friend a couple days before.

“And what do you think of him?”, she types.

“He’s a really interesting guy”, I reply.

“Well, you’ve mentioned that already. Interesting alone just doesn’t cut it” (She’s ruthless, I know; that’s why I love her). “Are you going to see him again?”

“I don’t know. Too lazy to take it seriously.”

“What does that mean?”

“It’s when you’re too bored or unwilling to think about the future. When you’re truly into someone then you start playing out various soppy, saccharine scenarios in your mind, which feel so embarrassing that you do not want to admit them to anyone, let alone the person in question. That’s the sign.”

When you really fancy someone then you don’t hesitate; you’re already two steps ahead.

Even if it is only in your head.

Even if it scares you.

Way too many steps ahead (as always),

F.

 

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