"I've been in love 10,000 times
All I have to do is remember my lines"
-- ZZ Top
The orders of magnitude in that lyric may be hyperbolic, but most single adults know the feeling.
The advantages to being single are innumerable. There are no negotiations about the ordinary business of life. Our idiosyncrasies have free rein. There is no need to explain why exactly we are getting up at 3:30 in the morning to watch a DVD of Kolchak: The Night Stalker. There is no argument over whether to remodel the kitchen and, if so, how much to spend on it. The only obnoxious friends and relatives in the house are one's own. There is no discussion over what munchables to toss in the microwave (or whether to remove them from the box first). There is no struggle for a piece of the blanket at night. There is no question about the current checking account balance. There is simplicity and peace of mind. Add to this Mark Twain's grumble that love affairs end either of two ways, badly or tragically.
And yet… and yet… even the most curmudgeonly of us for some reason is sometimes tempted to complicate life, despite having been there and done that repeatedly. Some of this is hard-wiring, much the way a sated cat is hard-wired nevertheless to chase a mouse, without thought of what to do with it if caught. In the case of humans, what we catch almost invariably comes with baggage that no sane person actually wants. It may be worse if we are the mice.
Humans, unlike cats, have the option to ignore their hard-wiring – not easily, but we can do it. Then something eye-catching scurries by...