So it’s time for the hearts and the cards and the flowers and so forth. It seems that the world is divided into two Valentine camps: the bitter, sardonic, “I hate love” camp, and the nauseatingly romantic, “I love love” camp. I like to think that I am in neither of these camps, and that I fall coolly somewhere in between. On love’s neutral ground, so to speak. But actually, I suspect that love has no neutral ground. Well, maybe it does, but I think it only exists for people that have become so numb that they aren’t even in the game anymore. And what fun is that? It’s none at all. Trust me, I’ve tried it before. It was back in the “Love Me Like a Man” days of my lonely early thirties.
But…why was I regularly using that Thigh Master thing unless I was secretly still in the game? Believe me, that Thigh Master was no fun, and I wouldn’t have been doing it just to try to impress my fellow singleton buddies with some killer glutes and thighs as we sat around watching “Friends” and “Seinfeld”, eating air-popped popcorn and pretending we were completely happy and satisfied with our solitary lot in life. Speaking of which, air-popped popcorn sucks severely and is like eating Styrofoam, in case you don’t know. It was the dietary equivalent of the Thigh Master. And then, there was that hunky guy that lived upstairs in my apartment complex that I tried to meet by timing my departures with his, in a reverse procedure to what I did with the elephant man from the SRV wars. Naturally, I never met the guy, whereas the elephant man became my lifelong friend. Oh, the irony. The absurd, pathetic irony of my life. But it doesn’t sound like I was really all that numb, even when I thought for sure I was.
So the bottom line, I think, is that there really is no neutral ground, and that we only pretend to ourselves that we are numb. The numbness is an illusion. We are all victims of love in some way. I can feel some of you desperately arguing with me on this, so let’s look at a scenario. Let’s say you are my spinster cousin and you say, “But Marie, I’ve been living alone happily with my cats since 1983. I have my gardening and I sing in the church choir. I’m perfectly fine! You’re full of baloney, Marie.”
And I’m going to respond by saying, “I’m glad you’re happy, really I am, but you’re still a victim of love like the rest of us. Don’t you remember that time your prom date spent the whole night dancing with that slutty girl and you called Uncle Herbert to come pick you up early? I distinctly recall that you quit wearing your contacts after that, and I’m pretty sure you quit using your Thigh Master at that point too. But I’ve seen all those muffins and cookies you bake for that weird choir director guy. Yep. You’re a victim of love too, spinster cousin, so don’t go thinking you’re better than the rest of us feeble clay-footed mortals.” Of course, I wouldn’t really say any of this to a spinster cousin, because she would cry, and I’m a softie, but the truth is still the truth.
This is my favorite Eagles song, although some of the lyrics are slightly disturbing to me personally. But maybe it’s my favorite Eagles song because of that. I could be wrong…but I’m not. Tell me your secrets; I’ll tell you mine. This ain’t no time to be cool…
And now, a little Valentine’s present for you…enjoy. And never quit fighting those flabby thighs.
Happy Valentine’s Day, fellow victims!
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