Miranda gets her man, and gets my goat

Will she marry Gary, who has 'more wobble than one of her pilates classes'? You bet she will
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The Independent Online

If you opened 2015 with nobody to kiss and then spent New Year's Day watching TV hungover and you still haven't done yourself in with an overdose of detox January sprout smoothie, well done and keep going – it can only get better. The year started with a Sex and the City marathon (sponsored by a dating website for "elite" singles), rounded that off with Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason and then delivered the final blow with Miranda: The Final Curtain, in which our hapless heroine finally "gets her man". There were happy endings all round to start the year. And an ending, in romantic fiction, is a wedding, ideally with soft focus and snow. Unfortunately, in these relationships, there never seems to be much happy anytime else.

In Sex and the City, for instance, Carrie Bradshaw finally ends up with Mr Big, the man who has demonstrated the strength of his attachment over the previous six years by ignoring her, moving to California and marrying someone else. In Bridget Jones, Bridget and Mark Darcy have eight weeks of falling out and nothing in common before splitting up and then inevitably getting married. Miranda Hart concluded her own series after five years, she said, because: "I wanted Miranda to move on, to be happy and be herself." So, will she marry Gary, the man with "more wobble than one of Miranda's pilates classes", even when he cancels the wedding after yet another freak out? You bet she will.

It's not just fictional couples, unfortunately, whom we look at and wonder if they actually like anything about being with each other. On 2 January came the news that the billionaire entrepreneur behind Paypal is divorcing his wife for the second time in two years. So that's where expensive romantic gestures and glamorous weddings in Scottish castles get you. The same day, John Cleese confessed that he married his fourth wife against friends' advice and that they are often so rude to each other that onlookers assume they are having a row. He explained his serial marriages thus, "deep down, I'm a romantic". God spare us from this sort of "romance".

Even Miriam Gonzalez Durantez and Nick Clegg, who by all accounts have a strong, 14-year marriage, have described their meeting as "thunderbolt stuff" and have been extolling the benefits of "having big arguments". To be fair, a lot of people would find themselves having big arguments with Nick Clegg – as long as they didn't have to do the making up afterwards – but Miriam genuinely appears to like it. It takes all sorts.

The dating service that sponsored Sex and the City claims that every eight minutes "a single finds love" through its services. Is that the same "single", and does she ever wish that "love" could last at least half an hour? So if you opened 2015 with nobody to kiss, don't worry. It's better to be single than to be the victim of romantic fiction.

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