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Serge Bielanko spent nearly 15 years living in a van and cheap motel rooms as a guitarist/songwriter in a rock-n-roll band called Marah, before turning to marriage, parenthood, and writing. For the past several years, he has written about the humorous side of being a dad and a husband on his personal blog, Thunder Pie. In addition to writing daily for Babble Dad and Babble Voices (He Said/She Said), his writing has appeared in places like Esquire magazine and The Huffington Post. Nowadays, this 41-year-old dude spends way too much time working on his first book in his garage in central Pennsylvania, where he chases trout, drinks beer, and lives with his wife, the writer, Monica Bielanko, and their two kids, Violet and Henry.

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The Road to True Romance: A List of Bullet Points For Your Fridge

By Serge Bielanko |

True romance is never easy.

True romance is never easy.

If you could spend a few hours rewinding my life (not that you would ever want to, God forbid), you could chomp away on your bucket of buttery popcorn and tilt back your box of Goobers til the cardboard edge became damp with your lip puckers, and you could watch me make a perfect mess of a lot of romance. You could laugh and frown at me pissing all over more things heartfelt and lovely than you would probably ever be able to stomach.

Down through my love affairs scattered across the last two plus decades, I have managed to screw up, amongst other things:  picnics in the park, late Sunday mornings in bed, walks down streets in a bevvy of world-class cities on several continents, impossibly sensual outdoor kisses, train ride cuddles, motel room snuggles, Christmas eves, Christmas mornings, tender moments eating ice cream on benches, dinners in dimly-lit restaurants… Oh hell, I’ve pretty much screwed it all up at one point or another.

But why, you might ask?

What is so hard or tough or difficult to understand  about romance?

Maybe you can mess it up once or twice but how the hell can a person mess it all up again and again again?

Well,  I’ve been asking myself that same question lately and the best answer I can come up with is, quite frankly, that I was a selfish asshole.

In all of my relationships, including the marriage I’m in now, I was very, very good at putting myself before anyone else. Even when I was really going out of my way to do something nice for one of my girlfriends, I tend to think that, in reality, I was actually trying to do something nice for them so it would make me feel good and look good and all.

It isn’t easy to admit that, I guess, but then again: yeah it is. See, these days, at 41, I am continually discovering that it’s never too late to learn about real romance, to gain The Force, to become a romantic; it’s never too late to begin to understand and respect the ancient and sacred practice of simply putting the person you share your life with ahead of yourself for a damn change.

Do that, and you’re on the road to true romance.

Good luck.

 

—————-TRUE ROMANCE (PUT ME ON THE FRIDGE)——————

 

> If you tend to think of romance as something you were never very good at, then you’re right.

> When you open the mall door or the car door for your guy or girl, other people wish they could be that awesome.

> There are, like,  fifty people within a half-mile of you who wish with all their heart that they had all the chances you have everyday to be romantic with someone.

> Night after night, you keep ignoring all of these chances to give back rubs. Why?

> Watching reality TV together on the couch is the new ballroom dancing.

> Holding his or her eye for just a split-second longer than usual can lead to real magic. Try it out.

> Today’s bad breath kiss is tomorrow’s thing you miss.

> Laughing at how hard your better half is laughing is the best laughing you will ever know.

> Love is a battlefield. “I’m sorry” is the Medal of Honor.

> Trust, tenderness, thoughtfulness, honesty, humor, and support. That’s the only six-pack you’ll ever need to be sexy.

>Renting a sky-writing plane is embarrassing and expensive. Take him or her out for ice cream instead.

> Kissing in public isn’t for everyone. Please don’t let that stop you.

> Giving flowers to a man says you ooze sexual confidence.

> Guys who really enjoy getting flowers ooze sexual confidence.

> Trying to include romance during sex might seem tough at first, but it can also elevate you to Greek God status in no time at all.

> Little love notes left under pillows and on dashboards and by toothbrushes are silly; and silly is divine.

> We are born romantic yet we spend a lifetime trying to deny it.

> Tell yourself that your romance is dead, if you need to. But don’t believe it unless you want to.

> In that movie in your head, you star in the most romantic film ever made. That says a lot about your potential right there.

> The male equivalent to sexy lingerie is being a great listener. Or male lingerie. Both are very cool.

> Remember this: despite your dynamic sexual prowess, it was actually deep conversation that started this whole love affair you’re still in.

> You can only be romantic with one living person at a time.

> When you get jealous of someone else’s romance: you’re not loving hard enough.

> Romance survives on todays, not tomorrows.

> Being romantic with someone really familiar to us is so hard sometimes, but so worth it.

> Romance has absolutely nothing to do with money.

> Describing yourself as ‘romantic’ is not necessarily romantic.

> The same romantic words and gestures that worked wonders back  in 1713 will still work just as well  in 2013.

> If you think of sex right away when you hear the word ‘romantic’ you have gone ten or twelve miles down the wrong dirt road.

> Whenever someone brags about their sex life you can be pretty sure that they are romantically challenged.

> The brain is a downtown skyscraper where crafty workaholics run the world. The heart is a backwoods honkytonk where happy people dance all night.

> If being in love ever bores you, you should probably hop a freight train to the end of the Earth.

> The story of your love affair could outlive you both by a thousand years.

> Whenever you see old people holding hands, that’s good luck.

> In a relationship, you can be either Friday night or Monday morning. You choose.

> Perfect romance is unobtainable, but pretending it ain’t is pretty romantic.

Image: everydayfunnyfunny.com

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About Serge Bielanko

sergebielanko

Serge Bielanko

Serge Bielanko writes about fatherhood for Babble Dad and about marriage stuff for Babble Voices at He Said/She Said. His writing has appeared in Esquire and The Huffington Post, as well as on his personal blog, Thunder Pie. He lives with his wife and two kids in central Pennsylvania. Read bio and latest posts → Read Serge's latest posts →

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3 thoughts on “The Road to True Romance: A List of Bullet Points For Your Fridge

  1. Natalie O. says:

    Great list, this is going on our fridge! Thank you Serge!

  2. Kristina says:

    I never comment on blogs, but I have to say “The brain is a downtown skyscraper where crafty workaholics run the world. The heart is a backwoods honkytonk where happy people dance all night.” has got to be one of the best things I have ever read. Ever.

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