Sunday, June 7, 2009

You are a vey beautiful UNDERQUALIFIED!

A blog on L-O-V-E for you all.

This is for all of my friends who are grappling right now. I am going to be ultra pretentious and act like I have something substantial to say about a massive and perplexing subject.

Increasingly, I have lately been talking with friends and dear ones, and these friends and dear ones have sat with me and have shared in mutual commiseration over this fickle, painful, messy, head-scratching thing called love. We eventually come to find that it is less like the movies, and more like our favorite songs. It turns out that people wrote those songs with more than just a catchy tune in mind. There was a deeper, underlying pain, frustration or gob-smackedness that preceded it.

Further complications come when we realize our own parents can’t even explain it. They can tell us that it worked for them, but they don’t have the key or the potion and we begin to feel a nagging sense of resentment towards them and their apparent happiness and ‘luck.’ Honestly, how can we be jealous of our own parents? We are the products of their unions. It’s like being jealous of ourselves. Or is it?

It’s really quite discouraging.

C.S. Lewis said of love, “To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket- safe, dark, motionless, airless--it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.” As usual, I believe he intended this statement to be a little esoteric and facetious, but there is a definite trend in this direction.

Without fail, all of my hurt, fed up, or heartbroken friends agree that the best plan of action is to continue on with their lives and take their hearts with them, but making sure to “…wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries,” as a diversion from all that is real and painful, locking it up in a casket or coffin.

But my brothers and sisters, my heart has been both wrung and broken before, as Lewis stated with such surety regarding the inevitable trajectory of love. But it has also been made unbreakable, impenetrable, and irredeemable. And let me tell you, the latter was the real misery. It was the real wrung and brokenness.

I enjoy the idea of love. It makes turds out of all of us and basically turns us into children in both the best and worst senses. And to tell you the truth, I think people acting like children isn’t that bad of a thing (said the immature girl). Sure, killing for love and going Othello on people’s derrieres could be potentially very dangerous and wrong, but there is a wonderment to love that I don’t believe anyone should be without.

Additionally, in the last few months, several of my friends have told me of stories in which they went out on a limb for love, and as a result of little or no return, they felt like incinerating their bodies, and some, literally attempted it (ok, not really).

Well, I’ve also gone out on a few limbs before, and I’ve got to say, it is always a great and dreadful day. I never feel more alive than when I do such things, and honestly, instead of desisting and giving in to my awesome potential to be a very mean old cuss, single and bereft of all compassion and tears, I find that I kind of prefer the messy alternative: The person who keeps others on their proverbial toes…including myself.

Thus, comes my response to all of life’s tough questions:

“I would walk five hundred miles
and I would walk five hundred more.
Just to be the man who walked a thousand miles
to fall down at your door.

Join in if you please, but only if you have a really good/ bad Scottish accent. That’s right, I mean YOU, James McAvoy.

Furthermore, if you or someone you know has experienced this thing called love, and more specifically, have made it work--don't be selfish, share with the class. Leave a little comment that can linger on the minds of my MASSIVE amounts of blog subscribers. We'll turn this blog into something REALLY useful, like, Judge Judy. Yeah.


  1. Wonderful post, Ms. Gidget.

    Success stories? Hardly. But of course you're absolutely right about those limbs. They need to be walked. Really, what's the point of living if you don't LIVE? Pain and disappointment are fantastic, affirming things. Without them, where would be the bliss?

  2. Funny thing about love is that it only works out once. Every other time will fail. There is really only one success story in a persons life. Right? Well, unless you're a polygamist. In that case you can have tons of success stories.

  3. Boys, you are both absolutely right. There is something to be said about that awful pain and disappointment, but there is something to be said about the success stories as well. Something to look forward to is always a good thing.

    Or, we could do as you say Jonathan, and just be polygamists. Although, what's kind of funny, is that we're kind of emotional polygamists to some extent. Think about it: limb, after limb, after limb for some of us. Doesn't that count as a type of polygamy. :) Ok, maybe not.

  4. Although I appreciate your thoughts, Gidget, one must remember that not all limbs are the same. While some limbs are quite structurally sound, others bend and break under the slightest pressure. I admit that the strong, sturdy limbs, which pose no threat of breaking, may provide the least satisfaction. However, it is simply folly to walk out on the limbs which are obviously infirm and clearly provide no support. Thus, when considered in the context of love, some relationships are secure yet unsatisfying while some relationships (individuals?) are folly to pursue. How does one find and choose a limb which is potentially dangerous, rewarding despite the pain, but not incontrovertibly infirm?

  5. Oh no, the shroud of anonymity. Futility, your thoughts are completely insightful and interesting, and yet, I won't be able to put a face to the rhetoric...that's no fun. Unmask yourself, phantom! Don't leave us in suspense! (see, this thing makes me talk like a collective!)

  6. And, as a comment on your final question (and it IS a comment, not an answer, because I don't have one of fact, I never do:):

    I think the key to finding that limb that is just dangerous enough, rewarding despite the pain, and most especially, NOT INTROVERTIBLY INFIRM - is to try to know someone's heart. I realize that sounds wishy-washy, but I find that sometimes when we really get to know someone, we can assess those risks. If after we have assessed and spent some time we still find that they are incontrovertible and infirm and always will be, then we step back and seek out other, less structurally unsound risks. I think to truly excel in relationships you have to be someone who understands risk management. Does that make sense? That's my take anyway.

    As humans, each and every single one of us is a risk. We all have the ability to disappoint and the ability to feel disappointment, but you are essentially looking for the person who could disappoint you the most because they matter the most, but they rarely DO disappoint you because they care too much about you. Does that make sense? It's dicey, but I find that this is the case for those that TRULY make it.

    And if that doesn't feel right, here's a quote from Time magazine writer/editor T.E Kalem: "A final comfort that is small, but not cold: The heart is the only broken instrument that works."

    I hope that promotes any comfort at all, Futility.

  7. Thanks, Gidget. You have some pretty brilliant thoughts--rationality grounded in hope, wow. Although I understand the frustration of not having a face to place with the rhetoric, I must retain my cloak of anonymity until my risk assessment allows me to unveil myself.

    Here's a thought about why songs may describe love better than movies:

    There is electricity in a tender touch.
    There is density in a painful tear.
    There is healing in an unconditional embrace.

    Love is poetic. Love is dense. So often, poetry and density are destroyed by exposition. Perhaps, music expresses love better than film because it doesn't confine itself to or restrict itself by narrative trajectory but embraces and exploits the power of poetry and the density of language. If a picture is worth a thousand words, why can't a word be worth a thousand pictures?