From her dark purple lips hangs a cigarette with pink smoke, and headphones with no music play a tune inside her head, and she paints bright red words loud as a FRAGILE stamp on her skin, and maybe on yours too, but only when you seem particularly insightful. She knows every word to every song of a band you’ve never heard of, and when they play and she’s driving the car, she will literally pull over and close her eyes to absorb the sound into her bloodstream, which seems to be composed of tiny bits of the galaxy and maple syrup and diary entries she never lets you read. She will kiss you in the movies, but only in parts heavily dripping of gore and violence, a metaphor she’s explained countless times but you will just never understand. She will paint her nails with your name sprawled across the *******, hold your hand in the gas station while shaming glossy magazine covers and everything that’s just soooo wrong with societies expectations of women today (despite the fact she’s somehow maniacally maintained her perfect body in the three weeks you’ve known her), and tell you that you’re her favorite season, a thought that your mind will spin around in its head like you ran around your 3rd grade classroom when your teacher was introducing concepts of matter and announced “now switch from a solid to a gas!”
But she will never tell you she loves you.
She will curse under her breath when you climb your courage without a harness to break the cold silence of the night, while laying on your back on the street under the stars. She will whisper “I’m so sorry” and speed off into the night, running with an elegant skirt she found in a thrift shop- made in 1956 or some other far-off year- flicking like a black-and-white movie behind her, the last thing you see before she disappears into the night, before she disappears from the audience’s cares and back into your mind.
She was everything I wanted to be for as long as I could remember, a terrible destruction of the human mind, a horrific enigma that perfection was so messed up that perfection itself could never learn how to love. Manic Pixie Dream Girl was my role model, Manic Pixie Dream Girl wore shirts from France hand-painted with Swedish fables, Manic Pixie Dream Girl knew every Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros song on the xylophone but only played with her eyes closed, Manic Pixie Dream Girl hated her sister and her parents and told everyone she was a mess they didn’t want to clean up. A disgusting idea that a woman only exists to make a man happy, to cure a man of his dark cloud of spinning inhibitions, and if she dares become real then she no longer is deemed entertaining. Manic Pixie Dream Girl was my goal, and with this in mind I embarked upon puberty with a music taste straight out of a Wes Anderson movie and teal eyeliner and the idea that being broken was desirable.
Until I actually was.
Manic Pixie Dream Boy refused to listen to the radio, wanted to be a famous actor, planned days to simply lay in bed all day, and smoked over a pack a day despite asthma so bad I worried every time we went up the stairs. Manic Pixie Dream Boy wore clothes with animals on them, but said he didn’t believe in giraffes, Manic Pixie Dream Boy hated school but loved to learn, Manic Pixie Dream Boy was perfect. Until he became the thing I so desired, telling me relationships weren’t for him and he couldn’t possibly ever fall in love, he was too broken.
But now I was Manic Pixie Dream Girl, wasn’t I? Broken, just as she was? Just as I had so desired to be when re-watching The (500) Days of Summer over and over again in middle school?
I hate you Manic Pixie Dream Girl. I hate telling the kind boy with the good grades and nice intentions that I couldn’t possibly love again, I detest the enigma I now am.
But when new boy with blue eyes darker than the Pacific coast tells me to lay down with him in the gravel and tells me that he hates the number 63 more than wheat-brewed beer, I say yes and give into manic dreams again.