Everything I Need to Know, I Learned From ‘Romeo + Juliet’

Oh, hey.

Something you guys may not know about me – because I write like a teenage girl – is that I have a degree in English Literature. Yeah, who doesn’t, right? But I really do read and write well–this column just caters to me getting out my passion for everything relatively unimportant yet completely enjoyable in the world. And I love it, and I think we should all do what we love and I love to watch movies I have already seen a thousand and five times and then teach you guys stuff. I’m a teacher, basically.

And I can’t believe I haven’t written this yet, so here we go!

EINTKILF Romeo + Juliet

1. Cousins are super important.
Remember how last week I wrote about Will and Carlton, the best cousins out there? Yeah, well, they should be thanking Romeo and Benvolio because, hello? They love each other so much. From the very beginning of the movie when Benvolio totally knows where Romeo is even though his parents can’t figure it out all the way to Romeo’s vengeance of his cousin’s death! 

I love the scene with Benvolio and Romeo playing pool because it is such a normal conversation burdened down by Shakespeare’s confusing yet eloquent language. Really, it reads like this:

  • Benvolio: Gosh, get over it, there are like a million other chicks in the sea, or whatever that saying is.
  • Romeo: How can I get over it when I love her so much? You know nothing about love, bro.
  • Benvolio: Let’s go to this party and I’ll totally hook you up, man.
  • Romeo: I mean, I’ll go, but whatever man, I’ll never find another like her.

am Romeo. I’m always like “no, no, no, I love this guy,” and then a few weeks later I’m all about someone else. Will this ever go away? I sure hope so.

2. Moms are the worst. 
What the hell is wrong with Juliet’s mother? She is sooooooo the original Ruth Dewitt-Bukater, am I right? She insists upon her daughter marrying Paul Rudd because he has a ton of money and a strong familial name…or something. I don’t remember why. It’s certainly not for his dance moves because he’s a super goofball. I mean, Juliet’s nanny/housekeeper is a better mother to her than her real mother, but I guess that’s a thing for a lot of rich people, huh?

3. If love be rough with you, be rough with love. 
“Prick love for pricking and you beat love down.”

Baz Luhrman’s take on Mercutio is my favorite thing in the world next to fresh mascara, red lipstick, chocolate chip pancakes, and DiCaprio’s lips on a cigarette. As he’s shaking that thang in a tiny silver skirt, adorned with a wig worthy of Nicki Minaj, he slips in my favorite line in the movie/play/world, and it is all you need to know about anything ever.

Be rough with love, you guys. It deserves it.

4. Costume parties are the place to meet boys. 
Because when you are an angel, and you meet a…knight? On speed? Through a fish tank? That’s how you know it’s true love.

For real, though, if I saw those freakin’ blue eyes magnified through the water in a big ol’ fish tank, I would also let him kiss me–by the book or not–immediately. 

4a. Desree’s voice is the bomb. 

5. Any man who thinks he never saw true beauty until he saw you is a man worth dying for. 
I mean, that’s a dramatic lesson but I kind of mean it, like if I met someone that said that to me even if I’m told I’m beautiful like fifty-five times a day, I feel like I would fall for him. Especially if he had deep blue eyes, flippy bangs, and kissed by the book, you know what I mean? Is that flighty of me to fall for dudes that say stuff like that? All I know is, even though I already loved him, one time I said that I knew nothing about flowers and my ex-boyfriend (before he was my boyfriend) said that he didn’t believe that because flowers were so beautiful and the smart part of me wanted to be like, “CORNBALL,” but the love part of me was like, “BAWWWWWWWWWWW,” and then I loved him for like three solid years, so there’s something to be said for bad lines about beauty. They stick with you!

6. Don’t call your lips “blushing pilgrims.” 
Cause it’s weird.

7. Don’t consummate before marriage, y’all. 
Okay I don’t actually condone this lesson at all, but I’m not gonna lie: Juliet has some power over Romeo, you guys. They are making out in the pool and when she’s all “gotta go!” and he’s all “will thou leave me so unsatisfied?” and she’s all “well what do you mean?” he’s like, “MARRY ME!” instead of “let’s get it on,” which is what he obviously meant, right? Right? I mean, I have never met a man that meant marriage before sex, and I have met a lot of men that didn’t want to sleep with me. Or marry me. Wait, what’s the lesson here? Um, try to get the upper hand. That’s the lesson, and I’m sticking to it.

8. Having a fiery best friend is dangerous. 
So after Romeo and Juliet get married to each other in super secret (the kind of wedding I want to have), Mercutio and Juliet’s cousin Tybalt get into a huge fight over pretty much nothing and SPOILER ALERT Mercutio gets killed. And he is pissed! He plagues everyone’s houses before his death! So I don’t know guys, just check in with your besties before you get secret married so you know it’s no longer cool to fight the people you used to fight.

This 100% does not apply to my life at all. For once. My best friend isn’t even fiery, she’s pretty subdued though she has a lot of opinions.

PS I love John Leguizamo a LOT, even if he is mean in Romeo + Juliet.
PPS My best friend’s first car was called Mercutio. I took my driver’s license test in him.

9. “Dreamers often lie.”
My old boss called me a dreamer once, and I was incredibly offended at the accusation because I think dreamers are the worst. I cannot get behind the people that try to do too many things–the people who want to open restaurants, and write books, and go back to school, and get married before they are 30 years old and still go to midnight showings and I’m tired just typing it all out. Though I think there is something appealing to dreaming–duh, who doesn’t?–I mostly think the ones who can claim to be “dreamers” are full of it. And Mercutio says this line, and Mercutio is my favorite, and I like to study my subconscious dreams, but the ones I control, I already know all about: they are lies.


10. Lack of communication is the worst.

Obviously neither Romeo nor Juliet had to freakin’ die. They were both dramatic, they both jumped to conclusions, and in general, I feel like killing yourself because your husband died when you were only SIXTEEN OR WHATEVER is crazy talk! I hate watching the end of this movie. If it was as long as Titanic, I would probably skip the end anyway because I cannot stand to see Romeo’s relatively well-thought out plan go to waste when Juliet dramatically drinks poison to join her man in the after-life. AND THEN HE KILLS HIMSELF TOO LIKE ARE YOU KIDDING ME? This is way worse than Jack and Rose! At least Rose acknowledges the loss of the man she has only known for two days and goes on with her life, meeting him in heaven, or whatever you call it, but pretty much Juliet is just a spoiled brat with an abusive dad and a crazy mother who would rather act in the height of her emotions than think through her actions.

Let’s be real–I’m like that, as well so no judgment. Consider your options before you just down some poison. It’s all I’m asking for.

PS Dudes: Romeo has hella game. Pay attention to him.

Featured image via popclassicsj, cousins image via hotflicks, Mercutio image via revengeofthebirds, death scene image via leonardodicaprio.me.