Okay. I’m not one of those crazy obsessed Twi-hards. I’m not one of those creepy old ladies who tattoos herself with Edward Cullen’s hollow gaze. I don’t swoon every time Jacob appears shirtless (I’m not sure how you have time to recover from one swoon before moving along to the next). I’m not gaga over Bella’s trembling bottom lip. I was reluctant to the fandom (and I still don’t really like most of the Twi-verse).
But I still love it. I devoured the books (except the second one – ugh), and I’ve been looking forward to the release of the last movies. I think the story says interesting things about our culture and… well… us. So here are 5 reasons Twilight appeals to me. And maybe to you.
1. There’s something to be said about the allure of two mythical creatures fighting over your affections. Amirite? I mean… come on. Who can’t get into that?
2. Sometimes there’s more than one right choice. Team Jacob? Team Edward? Team Bella Sandwich? I think everyone can relate to the feeling of having to choose between two equally valid, acceptable, even desirable options. Especially knowing that a choice means devastation on the part of someone else. I’ve been here a handful of times. And I’m not just talking about love – we have to choose which candidate to hire, which employee to lay off, which the-same-as-every-other politician for whom to vote, which bill to pay, which music to remove from an iPod to make room for more, whom to choose for our kickball team, and on and on and on. Life is full of decisions that are exquisitely, excruciatingly painful, and we get to watch that played out on the big screen in Bella.
3. Bella is just like me: awkward, clumsy, mousy brown hair, nothing all that extraordinary to look at. But there’s something special in her un-special-ness, and people see it. Sometimes people just SEE us, and those are people with whom we want to connect. We want that. It’s part of that need for interaction and connectedness that makes us wholly, perfectly human. Something in me sparks when I see someone recognize Bella as special, because it means someone might see ME as special.
4. Even when something is terribly written, the content can still be worth your time. We live in a world where one typo on your resume’ can eliminate you from consideration for the job of your dreams (or any job, for that matter). I’m the most guilty of the bunch. If there’s a typo in the local paper (about 2341234124 times/day) I tune out. If a blog has a gazillion misspellings, I move on. Heck, I might not even read my own blog – my punctuation is terrible, I use parentheses entirely too much, and I have a million fragments. But the person behind the imperfect resume’ could be an extraordinary employee, the local paper still has news I need to know about my area, and blogs worldwide can have an incredible impact on our communities. The MESSAGE is still there. The content is still relevant. I just need to get off my high horse and learn to appreciate it.
5. The perfect guy is still kind of an asshole. People make mistakes. Sometimes people abandon us, heartbroken and helpless, in the middle of the woods for several days. Whatever. It was a mistake. Even several-hundred-year-old vampires who should know better are imperfect. Because everyone is. The perfect guy doesn’t exist. I think that’s an important message for our young people (and those of us who happen to be 28-year-old, divorced, bitter old hags). Everyone’s human, and we should extend the same sort of acceptance and forgiveness we want for ourselves.
And there you have it… The five ways I see a little bit of myself in Twilight. If you’re human, I suspect you can see yourself in there, too. If you’re a vampire or a werewolf, it’s even easier.