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The story of "The Boulevardier"


A boulevardier in strictest definition comes from the French for boulevard or street. The boulevardier is a man (usually) who promenades through the fashionable city streets of Paris. Today, although the word is not a commonly used one, the boulevardier could be best described as “a man about town.” In other words, the boulevardier is the urbane, fashionable city dweller of usually the upper classes who has knowledge of any city, and particularly the cultured amusements to be found in that city.


Jay is not your average young man.  Affluent, and financially secure, he takes on projects  and work when interested.  However he could easily manage to live an extravagant lifestyle if he never worked again through a never spoken of but nevertheless present inheritance.  Despite his successful career, good family and supportive friends he is unhappy with life.  He is missing something, meaning.  The drudgery of his life begins to get the better of him.  Always successful with women he has grown bored with the average woman and with dating in general.  His relationships provide no lasting satisfaction for him, most of his relationships fail either because he invests little in them or he gets bored and moves on.  Very caring and concerned for the well being of others by nature this makes him a social magnet always surrounded by people who want to know him.  He is however distrusting of most people, assuming that they want something from him.  This is also especially true of women who he feels are either trying to change him or get something from him.  His ideal is a woman who simply likes him for who he is, plain and simple.  The only people he trusts are his family and close circle of three friends: Jack, Ben; George.  Together there are no secrets and any matter can be discussed openly, honestly and frankly.  The group often meets to help solve each other’s problems (usually with women).  Jay is somewhat of a loner to the outside world having many acquaintances but few real relationships except for the aforementioned ones.  Jay is somewhat of a mystery to the outside observer, but rarely drawing any criticism for it, because of his cheerful demeanour.  He is always good natured towards others but is filled with a strong desire to connect with the world in a meaningful way, his feeling is that he is not really living life to the fullest despite his successes.  He lacks emotion, feeling, his indifference for life consumes his existence. An accomplished traveler and man about town have become too routine a role for him, The Boulevardier.  He yearns for more and feels that finding a meaningful romantic relationship might be the answer.  This is easier said than done, as most things are.  All the women he meets are far below his standards, each having several flaws that eliminate them from being candidates for a meaningful relationship.  He seeks a woman who he can respect, one who elevates him to become a better person, thus far it has been the opposite.  The topic of finding the perfect woman is something Jay and his friends contemplate often as they too experience difficulties in their own relationships.  He has never had a relationship that meant something and has never experienced love.  To escape his pain he revels in partying, alcohol, casual sex, and other “pleasant distractions” as he describes them.  This of course does not help his situation and in fact only makes it worse.  He is generally apathetic about life and wishes to be engaged and feel emotion.  He puts on the front of happiness because he knows he should be happy and has nothing to really complain about but behind closed doors he sometimes breaks down and lets the pain of loneliness sink in.  Until one day he sees a girl who intrigues him, makes him curious and ultimately makes him feel!  He falls in love with her quickly.  He cannot believe he may have actually found someone who fills the void in his life.  He invests his emotions heavily in the relationship, tearing down his walls and giving himself fully.  Things seem fine for a while until she begins to have doubts about the relationship.  They fight terribly and Jay loses control for once in his life, completely breaking down in anger, tears and frustration.  But what can be done?  Out of his love for her he ultimately must let her go if that will make her happier as he genuinely wants the best for her.  He knows it’s for the best and better to happen now than later.  He sinks low following the break up.  His character changes and he begins to turn to alcohol to numb his pain.  From feeling nothing to feeling the peaks of love to the depths of love lost, he seeks to go back to his emotionless existence.  His friends console him offering a gamut of solutions none of them particularly helpful.  To escape his pain and frustration he drowns himself in sex drugs and alcohol going all out on weekends and living in a depressed sensualist existence.  His friends try to convince him to get out of town and take a trip as traveling was always a joy, to which he shows no interest.  He is more apathetic than ever, withdrawing from his work and most personal relationships, letting himself go more and more.  Until one day his close friend Jack finds him dishevelled on his doorstep and persuades a reluctant Jay to come with him and go for a coffee.  As they walk Jack sees a flower stand on the street and jokes that flowers always cheer up his girlfriend and maybe it would work for him.  Jay waits on a bench while Jack goes to buy a plant.  Upon his return Jack informs Jay that the girl who sold him the flower found Jay attractive and asked if Jack could give her number to him.  Initially Jay is reluctant and brushes her off but her persistence intrigues him eventually the two meet after a short while of phoning.  Instantly they hit it off and begin a very passionate relationship.  Again Jay feels renewed and faith restored in relationships and women. However like most passionate beginnings things begin to cool down when the responsibilities of a real relationship set in.  Minor problems arise in part due to her naive nature and controlling parents.  To correct this Jay proposes suddenly and decides to rush the wedding, to which his timid bride leaves Jay standing at the altar. Unbeknownst to Jay it was her parents who forced her to leave him. Jay does not take it well, and is shocked by the event, although half expecting it.  The following day he meets his friends at their local breakfast shop and discusses the matter revealing he has come to terms with being alone.  Suggestions are offered that this is temporary and eventually he may want to settle down, to which he responds if it happens it happens I am not looking for it and I am not avoiding it, although he admits that he would still do anything to get one of his 2 loves back.  He is lifeless without hope, melancholy, again meaning is gone.  Sometimes it takes something simple and obvious to make a change he thinks.  He ends up on the roof of his building looking down. He remains up there for some time thinking, contemplating. He is standing on the edge of the building it appears he is going to jump.  He stands on the edge looks over...