You and your friend are eating pretzels while standing at the kitchen counter when you accidentally drop one on the floor. “five second rule!” you blab and reach down to pick it up.
When people claim this piece of folklore it’s not because they actually believe it, it’s to prevent other people from judging them. If you drop a pretzel on the floor you might continue to eat it, despite the fact that it’s now potentially contaminated. So what about dating?
If we’re not sure where someone else’s heart has been- should we take the risk of biting into the relationship?
We know the risk of germs, that the dog licked the floor, and there’s dirt from our shoes- but I guess we think that if you can’t see it, it’s not there. Or maybe we don’t want to think about it. Is it the same with people? People don’t literally walk around with their hearts on their sleeves- “dated Jenny, broke up with Karly, has a crush on Lucy.”
But what if they did? Would we still take the chance? If reminded of the lurking germs right before… Would it stop you? Probably. But it would only be to save face… to keep to social standards. So often we ignore people’s pasts in hopes of becoming part of their future. We want to believe that somehow their germs aren’t going to hurt us and that if we pretend it’s ok it will be. Maybe we’re too scared to know the truth, or maybe we know that if we really knew the dirt on everyone there’d be no one left to date. Maybe it’s ok to have rules, rules to make us feel safe. After all, most of us are the dropped pretzels of the world to other people.
Maybe we’re all just waiting for the right person to pick us up out of the grimy backgrounds we came from. Find someone who cares enough and isn’t going to throw us away, despite the baggage that comes with us. That’s all anybody wants, isn’t it?