On the Overly-Dramatized Death of Chivalry
I think perhaps people think Chivalry is dead because they have been lookig for their knights in all the wrong places. Let me tell you a story of vetch, bugs, lawnmowers, and my knight. This vine-y plant grows all around my childhood home. It’s a weed lovely native wildflower. Somehow (possibly when I insisted on the transplant of some Goldenrod and Yarrow from same family homestead, not saying that’s when it happened, but it’s maybe a remote possibility…) the vetch ended up in our postage stamp suburban hippy yard. It grew in a few clumps, innocently winding up a fence post, and maybe a bit over the wall on the garden, and I asked my husband not to mow it down or pull it out. It looked nice. Even as it crept from the boarders through the lawn, out into the grass, it was pretty. And he mowed around it with almost no grumbling at the necessary maneuvering of the heavy lawn mower. My Prince.
This year, the vetch attracted more than a few ants and bees, though. It attracted Aphids.
Now, normally, I don’t have any problem with bugs. It’s just when they congregate. When you look and see that mass of writhing, twisting bodies all crawling over one another, legs and wings inter tangled, some empty shells left from the dead, and the frantic feeding frenzy of the living gorging themselves on the vital juices of the plant… Yeah. Heebie-jeebies * shudder*
So when I saw this horror being played out in my own front yard, and (did not) squeal like a small child, my husband shook his head, revved up the mower and mulched it all into fine, nutricious detrious for the rest of the plants. I did not even ask. He just did.
But he mowed around the daisies.
Now, you can tell me chivalry is dead. Or claim there is no such thing as a knight in shining armor. I call bullshit. I can open my own damn doors, thank you very much, but when I need a dragon slayer? My knight shows up, grubby work boots, Bermuda shorts, and roaring lawn mower at the ready. What more could a person ask than that?
And I guess this is something I cherish in my life, because it comes up in my books and stories a lot. Like In As Advertised when Tyler feels a migrain coming on. He doesn’t need the cavalry. He just needs a glass of water and a pair of sunglasses, and his knight, Steven, is ready with both. Or when Steven has a moment of uncertainty talking on the phone with Tyler. He doesn’t need Tyler to knock down doors or battle monsters in the closet. he just wants Tyler to stay on the line and talk him to sleep.
Sometimes, it’s the small gestures that mean the most, because it means a person has noted the little things that matter, and responded to them, and that’s paying attention. That’s love, and that’s what chivalry is all about.
Blurb: Tyler’s life perked up when he met Jake. So what if long-time friend Marty can’t stand him and his landlady has no use for his new beau. Tyler’s determined not to see the dark side of his lover. It’s his own fault for believing people don’t go around keeping secrets and lying.
Tyler should know better. He’s an ad executive. He knows the packaging is what sells, and Jake is quite a package. His lover is no slouch when it comes to false advertising, either, and when Tyler finds out the truth, It hurts. Weathering Jake’s lies and secrets gets easier with the help of new friends, Libby and Steven. In fact, Tyler figures that maybe a lot of things would get easier with Steven.
Tyler should have known better. Not even someone as seemingly perfect as Steven Jessop is completely as advertised. This time, though, Tyler has to make a decision. After all, sometimes, even if what you see is not what you get, what Tyler’s uncovered in Steven might just be what he’s always wanted.
NOTE: this book is currently out of print. Contact me if you would like a copy.