The princess went to see the matchmaker. A paper-thin computer was perched on the streamlined desk. On a black screen, the gold letters of the price menu read:
$100 The dating pool database.
$1700 Two dates with two different princes.
$20,000 The worldwide search for the prince of your dreams.
The princess was perplexed.
“What does it mean to be in the dating pool database?”
“We enter your information. If I determine another prince, who didn’t precisely work out with another princess, is suited for you, I will contact you and set you up on a date. With the other options, you will be custom-matched with a prince directly, no recycling.”
“I don’t want to be floating in a dating pool.”
“Tell me, why are you here? Why have you come to the village matchmaker?”
“I’d like to meet someone I can open my heart to and share my life with.”
“And is marriage important to you?”
“Um, it’s not...”
“WRONG answer! You ARE looking for marriage. If you’re with a man who does not want marriage, he’s the wrong man. We only deal with committed relationships here, ones that WILL lead to marriage. Do you still wish to continue?”
The princess squirmed. She very much wanted a match.
“I choose the $100 Option.”
“Consider the other options. We do have payment plans.”
“And I DO have bills to pay.”
The matchmaker slid into her chair and flipped her skinny computer open. The interview went somewhat as follows.
Favorite male celebrity? Pause. The princess went completely blank. Couldn’t think of one. They had all vanished from her memory. The guy from—what’s that movie? She already had failed the first question. Never mind. What’s your idea of the perfect date? Sigh. What important qualities are you looking for in a man? Heart. Commitment to Service. Passion. What do you do? Yawn. What book are you currently reading? Untie the Strong Woman by Clarissa Pinkola Estes. Are you an alcoholic? No. There will be background check, standard procedure, anything you’d like to tell me? I’m poor. Any arrests? No. DUI’s? No. Just poor.
What do you wish men knew about women?
The princess took a deep breath. “I wish men knew that when women cry or express deep emotion, they don’t have to fix it. Tears don’t need fixing. They just need strong arms to the hold space for them to fall. The masculine establishes the foundation, the walls, the stage so that the feminine can be safe to dance the emotions of all humanity there in the space he built.”
The matchmaker’s eyes were wide. “That’s good. That’s really good.”
“Final question: who are your 3 favorite Disney princesses?"
The princess laughed. Then she saw the matchmaker was serious.
“You need not respond now. You can email me your favorites along with 3 photos of yourself and then you’ll be entered in our dating pool database. Good afternoon, Princess.”
That night the princess wrote an email.
This is in response to your princess question. I used to be the old version of Rapunzel-- the one stuck in the tower, sheltered, with an overprotective mother whom I really wanted to please. Now, I am Rapunzel of the Tangled sort because when you’re slaying dragons, the hair gets messy. But I really just want to be a mermaid. I’m Ariel minus the whole curse and losing the voice and giving up my fins for a guy. I’ve played that whole story out several times. I’m not giving up my fins. I want to be Daryl Hannah in Splash. I tell the prince my darkest secret and he loves me still. The ocean is ours.
Most sincerely, Princess
P.S.- My photos are attached.
The Princess waited for a phone call from the matchmaker. She wondered what would come of it. Would the selection of her favorite princesses provide the psychological profile needed for the database to select the perfect prince for her? After hours of analyzing archetypes and personality, the princess dialed up her friend, the psychologist, to ask her, in her expert opinion, what the meaning of it all was.
“They’ll ask the guy who his favorite Disney princesses are and match him with the woman who chose the same ones.”
Was this all? The Princess was disheartened indeed.
She opened her window and cried out into the night, “Hey rich Princes, you feel like slumming it with a poor girl? Hey Matchmaker, Matchmaker! Get me a MATCH!”
But the Princess got her own match. She set herself on fire, burned and rose from the ashes as Queen.