There really is nothing like an evening with the house mates; the familiar conversation, the high-comfort clothes and the hours whiled away gazing at the grandest of designs, Kevin McCloud from Grand Designs.
We (I) casually browse gossip websites while opining the latest couple undertaking an over-zealous home-building task. We sit quietly while McCloud waxes lyrical in his final monologue and exclaim our support for his every word at its conclusion.
As the camera cuts away to span the magnificent vista of the finished product, and flashes back to some of the more difficult moments, including footage of a well-played weld, the Great Love reveals it isn’t actually McCloud that has his attention, but the skill and craft displayed in undertaking said weld. He says, “good joinery amazes me”.
Subsequently he espouses upon the merits of the weld: the artistry, the concentration required and the mastery which too few master; indeed, he declares it the “patient man’s sport”. It’s a speech spurred by passion and the best part of a bottle of red.
For me, it isn’t the conversation that causes me to pause, but a realisation we operate from poles located well apart, or to borrow a term from the craft, my MIG weld might not be a match to his TIG weld.
My dear friend and one who gives the wisest of counsel, once told me couples require a glue to make it through. For some couples, the real team-player types, their glue couldn’t be more obvious. And they’re the ones we all want to be. For others, it lies deeper and may be as simple as a shared sense of humour, an interest in alcohol, good food or just being outdoors.
We, as a couple, are seven years in the making. While he talks the importance of a good weld, I’m mentally shuffling potential relationship glues and it isn’t so much our joint areas of interest that are piling up, but rather the wealth of interests which operate without igniting so much as a spark in the other.
Throwing all passion areas together, we cover the gamut of fashion, motorcycle refurbishing, welding (obviously), guitar-playing, exercising, book-reading, cooking, animal-loving, film-watching, Keeping Up With The Kardashians viewing and gossip-discussing. It appears grim typed out.
Alas, no couple can push a decade without at least one relationship weld. I think further. The GL drinks deeper.
Have I got it wrong in determining purely based on interest as opposed to appreciation? Could our glue be less a tangible thing and more in the vein of a spark triggered by the heat of mutual appreciation for individuality and the pursuit of creativity? Elements which don’t actually require a touch point in the other. Elements which operate separately. Elements which also result in a healthy level of admiration for the other.
This could well be it. He finishes the last drop of red, McCloud departs our television and I realise a weld by just about any design, well it sticks just as sweet.