The sandcastle, unlike the castle in the air, has a sincere vocation of mortality. Building in the clouds is fantasizing at best. At worst, fall into delirium. When you make one of the first castles, you try to make it beautiful, firm, large, made of wet sand, with battlements, walls, and wells for water. But its architect – child, adolescent or adult – knows that the life of the castle will be brief, that the waves will eat it up. But it doesn't matter: it deserves to be born, it deserves to be lived. Something from a sandcastle has to fall in love in summer.
According to classical mythology, there was a time when men before us, suddenly punished by the gods, ceased to be immortal and knew exactly how and when their lives would be taken.
The thing about being mortals, with how they dealt with the sadism of the gods and their eternal punishments, didn't seem as bad an idea as the information on what the date of their death was going to be. This was what plunged them into a paralyzing depression, confining them in caves and holes, not wanting to work or interact with each other. Prometheus, always active in doing justice to men against the ignorant of the gods, managed to partially alleviate that pain. He had nothing to do with the subject of immortality, but at least he was granted that men did not know how long they were going to live, the date of their goodbye, how and where. That ignorance made them come out of those caves and holes and return to work, eat, love and fight, living their mortality as if it were not such. We all know that we are going to die, but in reality it is as if we did not quite believe it. That's why we waste time, we waste it, we shorten it, we give it to those who don't deserve it.
The sport of falling in love in summer is a mixture of all that has been said, believing yourself to be immortal, knowing the date and manner of death and pretending that it doesn't matter. Make the impregnable castle that you know has three or four waves left. But it doesn't matter at all. In its most classic and almost obsolete format, falling in love in summer had an expiration date. September was something else.
Therefore, we are facing perhaps the sport with a more powerful mythology, more intensely played and with both a popular and cultural tradition (books, movies, painting...) that seemed muscular and always alive. It was until what we call, already with tired resignation, new technologies. In a way and, rocking on the title of that song: Mobile killed the Summer Love Star. In fact, if we are realistic, it has a better future to build castles in the sand than to fall in love in summer and to shreds of beautiful and painful melancholy in autumn, which was the object of said love sport.
In reality, the preconditions for this sport still apply. It is required that the participants –generally two, although contributions from third parties are possible– did not know each other previously or, if they knew each other, they had not challenged each other to play. We are always in the field of emotions with and without sex, but not orgies, Tinder dates, nights of forgetfulness and illusion, because loving and not just sexual engagement is essential to be practicing this sport. A risky activity, sometimes deadly. The sorrows for the end of the meeting, the sadness, regret and nostalgia, could lead to serious melancholic states, inability to love others and even death.
Let's continue with the ingredients of this game. It's summer. That is to say, a time out of time in which one also allows oneself to experience feelings outside of what would come to be the routine. A time of year in which furies such as freedom, optimism, nature, crazy body, another relationship with it and with leisure, an idyllic and adventurous atmosphere are released. Summer, in these circumstances, is your favorite bar where your favorite band plays your favorite song in an endless night. The imminence of the tropical storm is in the environment. Something is going to happen and that something happens.
A summer love is your life in miniature. This is one of the most paradoxical aspects of this game: time stops the more present and inexorable the passing of minutes, hours, days, until counting 30. The game between the opponents becomes random. No one knows if they are going to play and with whom, but intuition reveals that information at the very moment it happens. The game is passionate, without giving a ball for lost, in which the athletes give everything they have and what they did not know they had, in an environment that carries them on the wings in a bizarre complicity: all the songs that sound to their step, all the places, all the sunsets, all the beaches and all the friends to run away from to be alone.
The game had its risk in that it was known to end in a cruel and resounding way, especially if you were a teenager, where also other pieces of the game –called parents– became both accomplices, facilitators and inexorable executioners and obedient to some rules –those of the adult world – who neither understood nor wanted to understand each other. You were going to the emotional limit knowing and forgetting, cheating and promising that the end of the match was not the end of the tournament. In its vintage formula, everything was left, then, at the risk of handwritten letters and calls from landlines in family dining rooms. That world no longer exists, and that is why the game has had to mutate and perhaps it is already another game.
Social networks, the internet, video calls, audio notes, WhatsApp and other gadgets mean that whoever abruptly stops the game of falling in love in summer does so because they are married or live in Albania. Summer love ceases to be a nihilistic, exciting and unique game to become, in the best of cases, the first half of any game in any month of the year. For the romantics, an unprecedented tragedy. For writers of German series and movies anywhere, a loss that they only half fix by taking their stories to Christmas, the only oasis left for this sport.