you & me

Noticing Romantic Subtleties Through Sticker-Store Memes.


I reluctantly began a relationship with a man who  did not speak the same language.

I resisted his attention based on fear of not being able to communicate, but after two sexless years, I decided I had nothing to lose.

It would be nice to reopen the gateway to divine pleasure. It was the allure of sex, pure and simple.

It seemed a low risk not to be able to speak to each other. Words convey so little of what we really feel. There was such joy and gratitude on both our parts in our brief meetings.

With no words to distract my attention, I began to notice subtleties I never saw in other partners, like the way he touched me with exquisite respect, the way he delighted in my body, the look in his eyes when he saw me, and the exquisite smile he always flashed when we would get together.

Because of our lack of a common language, we employed a no-drama definition in our relationship.  Interestingly, the words no and drama were exactly the same in our primary languages.

Since much of our romance consisted of brief online chats through Google Translate, we began to use sticker-store memes to express our emotions.

Sadness when one of us was sick, usually followed by our customary no-drama.

Tired memes for long work days. Waving memes for hello or goodbye. And rushing-off-with-briefcase memes for I have to run now.

And, of course, every love meme made that did not resemble something a 12-year-old would use.

But one day as the hearts bubbled up my screen, something extraordinary happened. Tingles ran up my spine. Shivers, goosebumps, and my heart expanded. I felt massaged as I watched the two little dogs nurturing each other with a massage. I felt his arms around me when one dog leans onto another for comfort.

Could these silly little kiss-blowing dogs and vibrating-heart kitties have the power to genuinely transmit our emotions to each other? I actually felt them, felt him, his intentions and his love.

We found a set of memes we loved the most. It was a blatantly sexual set that conveyed our deepest desires when they arose, and of course conveyed all the playful humorous innuendos that most romantic couples share. He liked the rabbit rolling with its carrot to convey his desire, and I used this image in another meme where the same rabbit was sleeping under a blanket with small carrots on it.

Clever little suggestive rabbits were not our only favorites. We both loved a fox who was squeezing a tiny rabbit so hard it looked half-dead, but had little pink hearts flowing out it.

I was never able to tell him in words that I often felt like the little rabbit with the intensity of his hugs. But the meme conveyed it perfectly. I too had pink hearts flowing out of me with his hugs.

But on the average workday, filled with completely different experiences we cannot share in the real world, the little bouncing dogs blowing kisses end our day. We usually finish with the sleeping animals cuddling, which conveys our desire to be physically close.

It may not be the relationship of some people’s dreams, but for us it feels as real as watching the sunset while sipping champagne on the back of a sailboat in the Bahamas. We will never be sharing the experiences most couples expect to move towards in a budding romance. It is for us a true sticker-store romance.

I would say the level of joy and love we share in our sticker-store romance is one of the most curious and satisfying loves of my life. There is such a present-moment focus, and we don’t struggle with communicating deep concepts. I seem to actually know him better than I have known other men through the simplicity of expressive memes.

Both of us actually feel the excitement of the announcement from the sticker store that says new stickers are available. I explore them with the same focus I would have in looking for a good book or movie to watch. After all, they are my movie-makers, my story-writers.


Mariosa is a performing artist who lives in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. You could contact her at Danza Vida.


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