Monday, September 11, 2006

Helena is a determined woman.

She grew up in the same medieval household as Bertram, only she was a dependent of a dependent and he was the son of the house. They were living on very different levels of a tiny town. Her father was a doctor, which seems to be here in terms of class about like garage mechanic or chauffeur. Maintenance.

She decides she wants to marry Bertram. She loves him, she says. It would also be a huge class jump up.

He doesn't want to marry her. He doesn't like her. He may not have noticed her much before she starts to go for him, but now he doesn't like her a lot.

She engages in many manipulative ploys to get him to marry her. She does a huge favor for the lord Bertram owes obedience to by curing him of a dread disease with a secret medicine her father left her. The lord says, "I'll give you anything you want." She says, "Give me Bertram, make Bertram marry me."

The guy tries, but Bertram skips town and goes to war.

She follows him to war. War is medievel and is mostly hanging out in town and occasionally going outside of town to fight.She finds a poor woman Bertram has the hots for who doesn't want to have anything to do with him.

Helena pays that woman to set a date for them to make love. The woman says to Bertram, as per Helena's instructions. "Show up at this time, but because of secrecy we can't talk or have any light." Helena is the one he makes love with.

She gets pregnant at one try.

At the end of the play, they are in fact married. This play is called "All's Well that Ends Well." It's by Shakespeare, and reading it, I have to save, in re the title, Shakespeare, give me a break. It doesn't look like happily ever after.

** [cut] Helena knew what she wanted, set out to get it and, in a way anyway, got it. Helena is the central character in the play, does much, says much. Helena is a big part for a woman.

An actress who played Helena said, "Nobody ever asks if Hamlet is likeable." These kinds of questions are asked about Helena: "Do you like her? Is she nice?"

No. No.

Women around here tend to be raised to feel an eternal duty to be likeable, to be nice, to be friendly on demand. If anybody needs a bit of friendliness, many women will feel they have a duty to provide it.

Women may feel they can set a goal and go for it, but all the time is the background question, do they like me? Do they think I'm nice?

A woman out in public can easily err in two direction. She can by the very way she presents herself be asking for it. Her public display invites bad things to happen to her, it might be said.

Another way for a woman in public to err is to be unfriendly, stuck up. To not be instantly available with someone needs that friendliness hit. She might be thinking of other things. She might be avoiding the asking for it danger. It doesn't matter. People in general are not allowed to think at the same time of the demand for not asking for it and the demand for friendliness.

How much space is there between these two things--asking for it and being unfriendly? Is there any space at all?

We could try for a larger nice.

Some United States women are deeply imprinted with the idea that they have to be as nice as possible under all circumstances.

Wouldn't it be nice if children didn't starve to death? Wouldn't it be nice if almost everyone voted because they wanted to and felt like their choices made a difference? Wouldn't it be nice if every child felt safe and treasured?

Getting to a bigger nice might involve having some people affected by relevant cganges not think you're nice.

Also being nice as possible and being prepared to always be as nice as possible takes alot of energy.

That energy might be needed for building the bigger nice.

Helena could be seen as inspirational in willing to be unnice but what an old-fashioned woman goal she had.

She chose a relationship brick wall, a man who wasn't interested in her, and beat her head against it for five acts of a play.

Interesting if she had chosen to go for someone who was going for her, or who might be reasonably expected to go for her and then gotten a life of some kind--like healing, for example.

A lot of physicians of this time didn't know much, but Helena's father seemed to know something since he left her the secret cure for a dread disease--which worked.

Her only interest in it was using as a tool against Bertram to make him marry her.

Helena isn't nice, isn't likeable. So what? I want her to use her willingness to be not nice, not likeable to do something bigger than getting herself in a marriage where anyone sane would say, "How could this work?"

So much of the human world works barely it's shameful. If women who have been trained to be nice released to energy for other purposes, if women who go for high-maintenance, low-contentment relationships learned to be willing to design a life that feels good, redesigning the world feels possible.

A determine woman can mean a woman with strong will who acts on it. A determined woman can mean a woman whose choices and actions have been determined by someone or something other than her--her past, the movies she's seen, the larger societal set-up.

Some women are determined both ways. They are strong willed and active, but it isn't really their own will they are acting. I want that you should determine the best and most pleasant to you way for you to determine the best and most pleasant for the most people future for us all. Thank you.