The Fade


There is a phenomenon that both genders do not like and are guilty of doing, but swear that it’s the other party at fault. It will be known as The Fade for the purposes of this discussion today.

For th record, few people set out to Fade on purpose. Life happens. It’s the cost of doing business. Yet, no one wants to ever admit that they’ve faded on their partner.

Some, mercifully, manage not to fade out on their partner. Fewer still manage to be paired up with someone who does not fade themselves either. However, the majority of us will be guilty of some degree of fade. this writer is not innocent here either… despite best efforts

What is this Fade business?

The Fade

In the simplest of terms, people tend to look, act, feel, show their best version of themselves when they’ve got a lot riding on how they’re perceived. In plain English, single people launching their life, careers, and dating efforts are more likely to present themselves in their absolute best light possible.

You’ve got the beach body going, you’re freshly learned in your scholarly pursuits, and you’ve got limited responsibilities preventing you from investing in yourself. You’re on your A-Game looking your best.

It’s the era of GQ men and Fashionista women. Ready for the perfect selfie at all times, extra polite, extra attentive, extra on time, extra everything.

Note: There are some category of people who, no matter what’s at stake, will not put their best foot forward. It could be a personality thing, a cultural thing, or a defiant oppositional thing. No matter the reason, they’re not showing a polished stylized version of themselves. And that’s OK.

Where things get messy

Once these very stylized people fall in love and have been at this love business a while, things start to change. Expressions like “I’m comfortable” starts to show up in their lexicon.

The man who always had his facial hair pitch perfect now will show up to a venue not remembering what his razor looked like. The lady who had her makeup solid now feels that her skin needs to breathe whenever she’s out with her man.

Worse, the polite conversations are now being met with snippets of zings and one-liners that sting. Curt and abrupt with a healthy dash of rude seems the new norm.

Affection is out of style and public display of affection is dated and jaded. These are the people who look like they’ve endured and have accepted that this is as good as it gets.

Side-bar story

A gal friend of mine used to have her fashion A-game super solid. You never saw her without her makeup perfect. You never saw a single strand of hair out of place. She never removed her heels in public. She never had her panties seen through her outfit. She was a walking poster child of any designer’s dream. Flawless.

Then, she got a boyfriend. We forgave her for the occasional re-adjustment of lipstick as we knew that she’d had to seal her affection with her man often. A few evenings, her hair being less than perfect made sense as her man loved to feel her locks.

The wedding day was exactly what a television crew aspires to deliver to it’s audience. Everything was perfect. Including arriving fashionably late and keeping guests wondering what novel surprise would delight them as they lost track of time.

Her boo had nothing but praises about how he had won the jackpot of the dating lottery. He even confessed his shortcomings as a boyfriend and enlisted our help to improve his boyfriend game. The man was trying very hard to catch up to the awesome of his lady.

Now, married, things are starting to change. Way too early at that. OK, they’ve been married a little while, but still.

There are days, at the same social venues that once required GQ level perfection, he’s seen without his tie. Even if the invitation insists it’s a black tie affair. When asked why, he’s quick to say that he shouldn’t be the only one trying to look their best on dates.

What about her? Did she fall out and let herself go? No. She hasn’t actually. However, one sees the slips happening. Her face needs plenty of breathing now-a-days. Not that she’s not pretty, her selfie game is still fierce. However, unless the event is extra special, she’s not trying like she used to. Her line being it’s expensive to be dolled up all the time.

Mind you, both do their A-game individually for work and other social functions they attend solo.

Recently, she was seen in public at a formal affair in a beautiful amazing dress and flip-flops. No one dared asked if things were OK, the resting b-face of hers prevented anyone from asking a thing about her shoe game. No worries, the heels were in the bag, as all the photos with her girlfriends will testify, but with her man, they were nowhere in sight.

He used to skip the games because it was date night, now he’s setting up the weekly guy’s hang outs. She used to balance her time between her girlfriend and her boo, now she’s heard complaining to the girls how men are all the same. Whatever that same may be, the gals seem to all agree however.

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