The Best Man

The Best Man

“No one’s striving to be Miles Davis. Everybody’s striving to get paid. And, you know, I want to be like Miles Davis.” -Meshell Ndegeocello

One of my favorite quotes by one of my favorite artists, what’s said here is bigger and deeper to me than a statement about the misfortune of artistic commercialism. It reflects the attitude of many when it comes to most things–to reject (or even ostracize) the different and the innovative unless or until there’s an obvious and convenient payoff. Normalcy is King, and uniqueness is rarely pointed out in celebration and reverence, as it is pointed at in criticism or worse, ridicule. You could replace the words of the quote to apply to enumerable circumstances. Perhaps none more evident than the way we approach relationships–and by “we” I mean most of “us”–which means you.

The ideals that we seek to fulfill tell a lot about us. Which is why I get a lil’ nervous anytime a woman starts talking about her “type.” I don’t feel like I’m anyone’s particular type–nor do I particularly care to be. And yet I’ve been accused of being everyone’s type–or prototype (in the most uncomplimentary sense of the word mind you). What I can say with absolute certainty that I do not have a typical or prototypical template about women whatsoever. In fact if you were to line-up all of the women I’ve been attracted to or involved with, it would seem peculiar that the same man could go in that many directions of aesthetic, personality and so on–without a trace or hint of pattern. But much like the Robert Frost poem, ‘The Road Not Taken’ that so eloquently asserted, “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference.

Yet women on a hunt for the “best man” to make a groom out of often seem to have an established reference of what he will ultimately be like without appreciation for the idiosyncratic–the things that make him different instead of the same. [Side note: Shouldn't the best man actually be the groom and vice-versa?] The comfort we have in ideals and expectations are not terribly beneficial, in fact they are limiting, at best–and at their worst, utterly debilitating. Sometimes the answer, much like Miles, will take us in a direction well off the beaten path and move us ahead of our time, into a new way of thinking. Sometimes we don’t realize how much we needed to go there ’til we get there. And sometimes, it takes someone to break the mold to realize how worthless and pointless the mold was in the first place. If I’m right , then the best man is really just a simple equation of the one who is there at the right time, with your best interests at heart and willing to trust you with his heart, LOVE you with his (flaws and) all–unfailing and unceasingly.

I swear I just want to be Miles Davis…and he never had a problem gettin’ paid.

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