The Love Journey – The Unrealistic Romantic Expectation We Don’t Talk About

Unrealistic romantic expectations are normal.

Our movies, books, and music are filled with dangerous ideas disguised as romance. The creepy obsessions and stalker behavior is well covered.

Search for “unrealistic romantic expectations.” You’ll find over 600 thousand articles.

To save you time, I read the first page of articles and concluded everyone ignores the most obvious unrealistic expectation created by musicians:

Love requires an epic, cross-country journey.

According to my music library, the ultimate show of love is a road trip. If you want to prove you love someone more than anyone else, you’ve got to make the ultimate sacrifice and take a vacation.

I need to travel 1,000 miles (either on foot or while playing a magical flying piano.)

Now, in the proclaimers defense, they did at least break their trip into two phases. Although they play into the “dying for someone is the ultimate romantic gesture” stereotype I hope to avoid.

Death Cab for Cutie—the masters of love-journeys—crushed everyone by writing a song about making a romantic trip into the afterlife.

Maybe I’m seeing this from the wrong angle. Most love songs are creepy. Sung by someone stuck in the friend zone—either just obsessed or dangerous.

Maybe traveling love songs are different. Maybe they’re just trying to tell us long-distance relationships suck and the only solution is to drop everything and travel across the world.

Even Peter, Paul and Mary knew leaving the person you love behind sucks goats1.

If that is the case, I think the Plain White T’s put it best in Hey There Delilah. The whole song is a giant, “I miss you, but we’ll get through this because it’s what’s best for us right now.”

It’s inevitable.

If there are two topics songwriters are as addicted to as I am pizza rolls2, they would be love and travel. They will crash together more often than not.

Besides, what else is a stalker songwriter going to do when their target obsession lover moves across country to get away from them.

It’s that or move on and let go…

Oh. Yeah…

That’s not an option.

1. Yes, Dad, I know. John Denver wrote Leaving on a Jet Plane, but I don’t like the John Denver version. That’s like giving credit to Leonard Lipton for Puff, the Magic Dragon and I’m just not willing to make that sacrifice.

2. Can you believe I’ve been clean for almost two years? It seems like a lifetime.