Tatiana Talks

The Science of Romance

So, after cleaning my apartment, doing all my dishes and laundry, clearing out the ‘fridge, scrubbing the floorboards and still feeling a bit antsy -- I decided to tackle my office/spare bedroom/nursery. Some people have a junk drawer or two in their apartments -- I have an entire junk room.

I never use this room which was suppose to be my office. For one, it isn't part of the original structure of my building so it is almost always too hot or too cold to be comfortable. Two, my kitchen table, where I never eat, makes a great desk.

The climate factor is why I hesitate to put an extra bed in there -- I don't think it would be very polite to makes guests sleep in this room. Plus, you have to cross through this room to get to my bathroom. Bridie thinks it would make a lovely nursery -- despite how cold it gets in there in the winter, so she calls it the nursery. My mom thinks this is funny and has also started referring to the back bedroom as the nursery.

I shudder at the thought.

So, first up in my junk room -- my piles of magazines. I collect magazines the way Britney Spears used to collect court dates. I have every intention of reading them when I buy them (or they come in the mail) but most of the time, I just page through them and then add them to the pile until my living room looks like a doctor’s office waiting room. Which is when the magazines get collected and moved to the back room until I can deal with them.

In this pile of good intentions was a Time magazine from the beginning of last year. The cover looks like a Lichtenstein painting and the coverlines read “The Science of Romance: Why we need love to survive.” I remember standing in line at the Whole Foods when I first saw this cover and thinking to myself, wouldn’t it be wonderful if it was all as easy as a science.

Seriously, what if people that are smarter than me figured out the formula for why we find some people attractive and pass over others? Why it works for some couples and not for others? If they could reveal that if you put on A, smear on B, give X look while standing in position Y, mix until smooth and creamy and bake at 450 degrees until warm and bubbly you will have love everlasting.

Okay, so I am mixing my metaphors, but you get what I mean. My interest in this magazine renewed and I set out for my sofa; this time I was going to actually read the article.

After all, information is power and I can use all the power I can get in this silly little game of love.

Sadly, there were no equations or recipes. Just a lot of hypothesizing as to why we put ourselves through the whole process and some really interesting facts about it. For instance did you know that strippers that are ovulating average more in tips then strippers that are menstruating or strippers that are neither menstruating nor ovulating? Mind you, I didn’t realize that strippers worked when they were menstruating.

There was also a section on flirting, but again, less a how to and more an everyone does it and here is why we do it even when we are happily married. Did you know the first how-to guide to flirting was published more than 2,000 years ago? That raised an eyebrow (which is a nonverbal flirting cue) as I may be able to use that as an ice breaker the next time I am out and near a cute boy. Of course I won’t. But it is good to have. Less I start racking my brain for something interesting to say and the tid-bit about ovulating strippers blurts out.

There is just nothing hot about a girl talking about ovulating strippers.

Otherwise, there really wasn’t much I could use as I embark to find Mr. Tatiana. Which is good in a way as I would have been really angry with myself if the secret to finding couple bliss had been sitting in my junk room for the last year and a half. Maybe I will run out to Borders and see if they have a copy of that 2000-year-old guide to flirting.

I mean, really, how much could have changed in the last two millennia?