Thursday, 12 September 2013

40 Days of Dating: Review

I found out about 40 Days of Dating today. Click the link to read more about it. Perhaps I'm a bit behind on the times because it's been around for a few months, but better late than never, hey? I gather the last four days of the tale have only been released recently anyway so maybe I'm not that late. Anyway, I sat down for three hours today and read the whole website. I was glued to my laptop, totally enthralled. So I wanted to write down my thoughts about it, and I suppose it will turn into a review of sorts.

Two friends named Jessica and Timothy live in New York City and have been friends for four years. There's always been an attraction between them but they've basically put each other in the friend zone and have never really been single at the same time - until earlier this year. Jessie tends to fall in love quickly and demand too much too soon from a relationship, while Tim is a bit of a commitment-phobe and dates around a lot. They wonder if, just by spending every day for forty days with one person, you can start to feel romantically attached to them. So they decide to put this theory to the test with each other.

They come up with a set of rules: they have to see each other every day, they'll see a therapist every week, they'll document the whole thing for their blog, they'll go on three dates a week, they'll go on a weekend trip together, and they won't be romantically involved with anyone else for the forty days. I'll say it now: for me, their seeing a couples' therapist every week ruined it. What normal couple sees a therapist right from the word go? I'm pretty sure it's because Jessie has her own private therapist and Tim has had one before that they felt it necessary to have every thought and move of theirs analysed by a "specialist". And I got the impression it tore them apart. Whatever, anyone reading their website could have told them what their therapist did. Anyway, I digress.

Right from the beginning, I can't say I warmed to either of them. I thought Tim was, essentially, a bit of a dick, really bossy, and pushed Jessie into a lot of things she wasn't necessarily keen on. I thought Jessie was obsessive, jumped to ridiculous conclusions, and - I'll say it - weak. But I loved the project and the whole idea they'd come up with so I kept reading. For three hours. It takes a lot of time to read both Jessie's and Tim's account of each of the forty days and watch all the videos, but I'd say it's definitely worth it.

Their affair begins as you would expect - they're just two friends spending a lot of time together. After a week, they actually begin to see each other in a more romantic way, both admitting their feelings for the other. Is this because they actually like each other, or is it because of how much they've been seeing each other? I'm inclined to go with the latter but feel free to make up your own mind. About two weeks in, Jessie's already-frequent headaches take a turn for the worse and it negatively impacts on her relationship with Timothy. Don't worry, they get things back on track (or there would be no website dedicated specially to their affair) and start acting like a real couple.

I loved that stage of the project but, just like any chick flick film, you know the seemingly perfect period can't last forever and something bad is coming. And, well, they don't end up together. I would like to say it's a shame, but you know what, Jessie can do so much better. Although it wasn't her decision to end their relationship, things turned out best for her. She's only twenty six; she still has plenty of time to find someone and settle down and, while I resent people who jump too quickly into relationships, I resent thirty two year old men unable to commit to a relationship even more - Tim. If he couldn't make it work with Jessie, and hasn't made it work with any of his previous girlfriends (he's dated 64 or 65 women, I think) then I don't really think he has much of a shot. Maybe I'm being harsh, but I really didn't like the way he came across.

Let me know if you've heard of it, or read it, or are reading it now. I'd love to hear your views and what you thought of Jessie and Tim. Happy reading!

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