To me, the core of that attraction is that she is a better reporter than he is. Think about being Superman for a second. The Olympic record for weightlifting is 1,038 lbs., but you could lift more than that as a child. The record for the 100 meter dash is 9.58 seconds, but you can travel over 51 miles in that time. Going to Vegas? You don’t need your X-Ray vision to win at Blackjack, because you can just count the cards while holding down a conversation about nuclear physics. Without really trying, you are better at just about everything than anyone else in the world.
However, (as Mark Waid once pointed out in a podcast with Marv Wolfman) none of that really translates to your chosen profession. Typing really fast does not help your prose. Being able to lift a tank does not help you convince a source to go on record. It is as near to competing straight up with normal people as Superman would ever be capable of. Even then, it comes easily enough to him that you get a pretty lofty perch at a great paper very early in your career. It is just in this one context, there is someone better than you are: Lois Lane.
As mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent, you reach up for the first time in your life and she rejects you.
To me, it is an inversion of the Luthor story. Luthor sees someone above him and feels hate. Superman sees someone above him and feels love.
last night i woke up because two dudes were fighting underneath my window and one dude kept screaming “BRO!! BRO YOU CALLED ME A BITCH IN FRONT OF THE WHOLE BAR BRO!! THE WHOLE BAR!! WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT BRO??” he sounded so heart broken. why bro. why did you do this.
greasy wind-swept hair. pissed off because there’s sand everywhere. sitting on driftwood and smoking and watching high tide come in. don’t wanna be here but not leaving even though you could. fell down in the water. ocean ate your flip flop. Anger. flannel tanktop
When I was a kid I thought your 20s were supposed to be fun, not filled with perpetual anxiety about financial stability and constantly feeling like an unaccomplished piece of shit.
That’s because the people telling you about being in your 20s are the ones who ruined it for the rest of the world by the time you got there.
I wish I could have back all that time I spent in my 20s “constantly feeling like an unaccomplished piece of shit” because of books I started but didn’t finish. Not just because that’s a terrible way to feel, but also because now that I’m older I look back on the projects I was beating myself up over not finishing and I realize that:
most of my ideas were stupid
I was in no way prepared to finish them
if i somehow had finished them there was zero chance they’d be successful on any level (artistic, financial, whatever) and ever reach a wider audience
and even if they did I wouldn’t have been prepared for the negativity I would have faced (because as mentioned above, they were pretty stupid ideas deserving of negativity)
and finally even if I somehow avoided all traps and had become history’s first universally beloved 24-year-old bestselling critical darling novelist, my ego would have turned me into monster that would have made Joffrey blush.