Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I really honestly do get the best email.

This excerpted from a recent report from our Suburban Affairs Correspondent.

“It’s amazing how tiring it can be keeping one's patience for extended periods of time. I hope the delicate equation that represents the balancing act between anger and discipline and love and kindness that ultimately prevents me from drowning my own children in the bathtub continues to come out with positive values for n... at least until they are big enough to fight back... so I can claim self-defense.”

Ah, the joys of parenthood.

Monday, February 16, 2009


Dodging an arrow

Valentines Day has passed without event. Despite the mercenary conspiracy between the terrified kings of retail and the scabrous whores of media I managed to pull myself through February 14th without blowing my money on blood diamonds or my brains out for lack of a super-sized heart-shaped box of low quality mass-market chocolates. I did not flail myself upon the rocky shores of the internet the contents of my wallet plucked away by the icy fingers of the frigid wind as I succumbed so completely to the siren song of the likes of eHarmony before, heart bruised, ego bloodied and face tearstained, seeking solace of the most base kind in the lower darker stickier regions of the electrical ether. I tithed nothing to the corrupt curates of Hallmark and traded not one shekel for the gift wrapped communication devices, digital televisions, portable computers or any other of the myriad impersonal and often isolating products we are being cajoled into believing are suddenly rendered the crème de la crème of romantic tokens and fetishes simply by the addition of a red bow.

That said, do I hate Valentines Day? Most of the time, yes. It is an obscure Catholic feast day that was spun up into a candy floss castle of contrived romanticism first as a means to sell cards and now, because in this culture nothing succeeds like excess, to sell everything from x-rated candy to SUVs to laser hair removal. However it is not only the blatant meddling of avaricious industry in the most intimate affairs of the general populous that starts my hackles rising. No, there is also the callous disregard for the collateral damage inflicted upon those who are not the fertile demographic ground with potential of offering up the sought after fiscal harvest. One last stab after surviving “the holidays” from Thanksgiving’s explanations at the prodding of familial inquiries that, no, one is not seeing anyone just now, to the gift giving days writing tags and cards to couples and even on rare occasions triples, to the killer queen of them all New Year’s Eve at midnight when a raised glass of champagne is met by strangers and friends but lips pass into yet another year unkissed.

I am of course a hypocrite… to a greater or lesser extent. When I have been involved with someone and the big VD rolled around again there were always schemes and plans aplenty. Though my style tended towards buying a small box of quality chocolates and making a card, maybe revealing some long sought after treasure I had hunted down over the previous months on my beloved’s behalf. I never wanted big gifts either. I’m always up for an indulgent dinner the cost of which I could rarely justify, but it has never been about the big box with the big red bow. To be honest, as much as I am a sucker for flowers the path to my heart is not most easily walked by Nicky Arnstein his arms full of long-stemmed roses and leading a legion of porters carrying bushels more. A fistful of daisies because it’s Wednesday. Daffodils from the grocery store when he ran out to get milk. The roadside buttercup he tucks into my shirt pocket. That is romance. So don’t let all of this bilious carrying-on lead you astray. I am a big fan of both love and romance. There is nothing sweeter or more beautiful than the incidental, as it occurs to you, because you want to kind of gestures that do not flow from clumsy corporate brainwashing and the guilt that underpins culturally sanctioned gold digging. And, would I like to have somebody to drop forty grand on just to mark the return of February 14th? Hell yes! Because that would mean not only was I in a relationship… but that I could throw around forty-thousand dollars with impunity. That is not the point. The point is I’d rather be and be with the kind of person who knows that money is not love, advertising is not real and that stopping by someone’s office to give them a quick kiss and a candy bar because from the tone of their lunchtime blog post that was what they most needed right then is better than cold carbon, a hot car, or a flat screen any day.

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