Write about Love
by Autumn Ober
illustration by Andrew Goldstein
“Write about ‘Love'” is the current assignment – a topic only an idiot could pretend to know anything about. Bearing this in mind I turned to the largest and most pervasive source of societal idiocy I could think of: Webster’s Dictionary. Webster’s says Love is 9 specific and separate things, with #8 being “a score of zero.” Things being what they are, “love” is one of the looser terms in the English language, running from verb to adjective and applying to any number of linguistic set-ups. This is not because it’s a grand abstraction, but rather a direct reflection of the confusion over just what in the hell it is. Frankly, no one cares what it really is, just what it does…
It makes people feel funny, stupid, and important. Very much the way large quantities of liquor make people feel. Only instead of puking, you (hopefully) get laid. I’ve heard it said that getting laid has nothing to do with “love.” This is true in some instances, e.g. “I love my cat, Pussy. She is my very best friend.” The same genius who made this distinction invented the word “lust” to qualify it. Now there’s a very gray area between “lust” and “love,” and it’s this gray area that concerns me.
I happen to “love” my fiancé – that’s why I’m going to marry him. But if the urge to screw him didn’t exist he’d be my “friend,” plain and simple. AH HA! The intersection point, the grayest of grays. Granted, some people are together for “other” reasons. Not to condescend, but one of two things is happening in these relationships: 1. Money is involved, or 2. No one else will fuck them so they take what they can get, what they can get being each other. This is not “love”; it’s convenience, which is admirable, but “love” and convenience are contradictory terms. This evolutionary contradiction is often the only difference between lust and “love.” Lust is at times convenient, like chance dry-fucking some oddball who’s as drunk as you and in the same bathroom at a party, or lusting after a person who refuses to fuck you, allowing you to pathologically “love” him/her.
Eventually, all pathological “love” situations develop into neurotic sexual catches and patterns. Understanding not only your own but other people’s hang-ups is hugely important if “love” is to be your forte. The most annoying and pervasive example is the old “he doesn’t love me, all he wants to do is screw” line or its first cousin, the “he doesn’t love me because he can’t (won’t) fuck me.” Most often heard from the mouth of a standard issue American female, these statements can also be found in male conversation, although they take on more subtle forms that only men understand (…). Now deductive reasoning tells us that lust and “love” have met at the way side again. If sex wasn’t a big deal here, it wouldn’t be rearing it’s ugly head, no?
“Love” breaks down into a myriad of components, the cardinal of which are the following: Like something about someone; Fornicate (or something pretty damn close to it); Pillage his/her personality; Volunteer to indulge his/her neurosis; Complain; Separate; Fuck again; and so on, ad infinitum… give or take, according to the local climate.
I guess that’s about it for today. Fear of falling short of the Kama Sutra purged, I leave you to go about your business better for the confusion.