Sex in The Cynic

The Chase As kids, playing games was a favorite pastime. Our afternoons were filled with kick the can, capture the flag, and freeze tag. As we’ve gotten older though, we have prided ourselves on finding more sophisticated means of wasting time and meeting that special someone. But, from our childhood we have taken with us the essential component to our youthful play: the chase. Ah yes, the one game in life that will never meet an age limit, nor a humility limit. For reasons untold (perhaps until now), there is something inside all humans that draws us to that ungettable get, especially when it comes to pursuing the love of your life. While the chase is beneficial in some aspects of life, like applying to your “reach” school, or going for that dream job, making the chase a part of your love life seems illogical and self-deprecating. But, the fact remains that we all play the game, and subject ourselves to this eternal childhood pastime. After considering this, I couldn’t help but ask myself why. Why do we choose to participate in this sport, and put our hearts as well as our pride on the line? The most obvious answer to this social conundrum, and the answer I received from most that I interrogated concerning the matter was simple. The chase is exciting. This grass-is-always-greener-on-the-other-side phenomenon in the dating world arouses us, gets our hearts racing, pumps our blood. Not only that, but the chase is seductive. It pulls us in, and doesn’t let go until it has sucked the last bit of sanity and humility from those very veins that pumped so voraciously for the person in the first place. Seeing that whom you admire flirting with someone else, or choosing friends over you somehow draws us in closer, begging for more. In any other case, we would walk away, and not look back. A friend stabs you in the back, a co-worker under-handedly screws you over, a classmate takes all the credit. Most would turn the cold shoulder and have little qualms writing the person off permanently. But, when it comes to that special someone, our skin is miraculously thicker, and our tolerance for pain increases ten-fold. We continue to go back over and over, letting the scar tissue build, and our pride slowly degrade. Humans are creatures of habit, and it makes sense that we would seek excitement in any realm of life to stir things up a bit. What I don’t understand is why we choose to stir the pot in an area of our lives that poses the most danger. When it comes to matters of the heart, there is no greater risk. A broken heart resonates in our psyches far more than any fracture or sprain, yet we continuously put it on the line. As I considered all this, it suddenly dawned on me that, in many cases, the chase has little to do with the person we pursue incessantly. While it may start with a strong attraction to someone, the pursuit begins to take on a life of its own, and our will to be sane is no match for the monster that is the chase. It is no longer a quest for someone else. It becomes a hunt for triumph, for victory, for the pride that is lost with every unreturned phone call. Ironically, the recurrent game of tag we play with our dignity results in a slow degradation of self-respect. The more we chase, the more we lose. I acknowledge that the chase will never end. Mankind will continue to play the game, and put themselves on the line. But, while you’re out there, getting your butt kicked, don’t forget that with every tackle, you lose a little poise.