“You can’t always buy me a guitar whenever you screw up you know”,
she interrupts the kiss.
“Yeah, I know. But then there is always, you know, drums and bass and maybe even one day the tambourine”,
and he continues kissing with a mischievous smile.
This is a story of how we love to hate the person we love, but we still love them anyway. The reason is simple, because we love them in all the ways.
A true connect of two hearts is usually such a rare occurrence that even the most immoral of events become irreproachable beyond reason.
Here are two such anecdotes from the heart of teenage America in the 90’s, captured in the backdrop of classic English literary enamor.
Almost all the characters are often depicted in love with the classical literature and in agony over finding an innocuous word for every occasion. It is infact a modern adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew. But the most profound work of art that is presented as a tribute to the age old literature comes in a package of the simplest words of a love poem, titled ’10 things I hate about you’.
It is written by elder of the two sister protagonists of the story. She is Kat; she is annoyed; she hates guys and she is nothing like her baby sister, Bianca. Bianca happens to like being adored; she is the favorite daughter and she is out hunting for a date. Together they live with their father who is one of the rarely bred male Gynecologists. This makes him forever apprehensive of a teenage pregnancy in his own house instead of in the clinic. So he is absolutely uptight about his girls never dating. Here is the first wall set around these two beautiful hearts-the wall of protection against physical harm.
But then as Alighieri says, fate cannot be taken away from us – it is a gift. Bianca’s gift arrives when her father allows her to date if Kat does. And Kat’s gift arrives when a guy happens to really, really like Bianca and sets out to face anything to be with her.
Introducing Cameron who happens to see Bianca for who she really is beyond all the ‘miss look at me’ self. He falls for her pure eyes and is determined to be with her. He goes on to challenge her apparently vile and wretched sister to be able to date Bianca.
It is Cameron’s pure love and sheer desperation that introduces the final character of the double love story – Patrick Verona (the gorgeous Heath Ledger). He is chosen for the task of ‘Extreme Dating’ Kat who happens to be a difficult shield to get through. Verona is practically lured into dating Kat with a reason as cheap as money. But as it is said, sometimes the end becomes more important than the means. And when the end is love, everything is fair!
So Verona is paid by the one person Kat truly hates and is the instigator of all her anger for the world and its status quo. It is her ex-boyfriend and a rather shallow, rich, spoilt and immoral douche bag named Joey. Joey has eyes for Bianca, who is simply a virgin sophomore and nothing more to him. He is the second wall between these women going after love because he stand for the typical asshole that only wants to use women and not make love to them.
Everything is going well. Joey is being used for his money, Verona succeeds in getting Kat on a date and this allows Bianca to be with Cameron. But then morals get in the way. Bianca has a penchant for the popular. She wants to go out with Joey. Cameron feels used when Bianca can go out with Joey because of his genius plan of getting Kat and Verona hitched. While Kat finds out that Verona was actually being paid to take her out.
(For some reason, when one sister is at the top of her sine curve of love, the other is at her trough. There lives, like the two of them, are out of phase. Nevertheless, that only makes the story all the more life like!)
Love is soon lost in the anger of rejection or betrayal. Loyalty is expected in return for loyalty. Honesty is expected in return for honesty. But that does not happen. Hearts are broken and tempers are lost.
The story very beautifully captures the sins committed by a weak lover. They are not intended as sins but they are not chaste either. She does use him to go out with another guy and he does take money to go out with her.
But then while Bianca soon realizes how boring her ‘cool guy’ really is and Verona’s conscience actually begins to come in the way. But before they can actually accept their mistakes, the secret is out. Even if the love was true, the means were not.
They say ‘Everything is fair in love and war’. What a cruel statement for the heart that loves pure and righteous. But a savior to the one that loves true but gets caught in the trap of its past.
And here is where I borrow a few lines so apt . . .
Sometimes it stops, sometimes it flows
But baby that is how love goes
You will fly and you will crawl
God knows even angels fall
No such thing as you lost it all
God knows even angels fall
Personally, I am yet to unravel the truth of this condition of the heart, this dazed and confused state where what is right and what is wrong remains beyond the reach of the mind and the heart simply speaks of an impetuous love across the lies and laughs, across pains and pleasures, across these different dualities. I am reminded of yet another group of words from a favourite –
Out beyond the ideas of wrong-doings and right-doings,
there is a field – I will see you there, my beloved