Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Two Fantasies (?)

In a day or three (I promise, no more than four) I'm going to be posting a rebuttal to Chuck Klosterman's "Emo" from Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs. But first I thought I'd trot out too bits of "romantic idealism"—one recent, the other older—to show that love's more than standing outside her window with a boombox blaring Peter Gabriel[1].

Fantasy not involving whipped cream, sensual massage or erotic cakes

We’re in my bed.

The overhead light’s off; twin reading lamps illuminate our profiles.

We’re not dressed, but neither are we naked (though we could be).

This is a kind of intimacy only you and I share.

Reading together (maybe the same, too-difficult-for-the-masses book), a traditionally solitary pastime turned shared experience.

Don’t slouch too much, I can get you more pillows (but yes, I will kiss your back when you lean forward while I add the pillows.)

But we have to stay focused, sort of.

Even as we share funny passages aloud.

Even when we read to each other something we find striking.

Even when mere lust threatens to shift the focus from the printed page to how little we each are wearing, and all the things physically we love are more heightened after the intellectual stimulation.

Even after…


After...we give in—because fantasies like this can’t come on a first date, and at this point we can’t resist each other for too long.

And yeah, it’s a work in progress…not quite a fiction, but not quite a “then my lubed tumescence thrusted mightily into her—the sounds of her orgasm woke the neighbors” Penthouse Forum letter either[2]. The second fantasy—shown here slightly fixed up—was a Red and Black column. It was originally meant as kind of sophisticated “I love you this much” valentine to a girl I should have expressed my romantic feelings to many months before…but it’s held up well as far as being a benchmark for just how my butterflies feel when I start feeling something beyond being simply smitten.

When Love Grows Up

I know what you're thinking: "It's Valentine's Day, I'm sure Will Mosher has some biting, cynical, sarcastic column about what a load of crap Valentine's Day is."

How it's nothing more than a Hallmark holiday, or how it's the day that makes single people feel bad, or something about the dangers of not getting that "special someone" the right gift because if it's too much too soon, that's bad, but if it's not enough, that's bad too.

And to you I'd say, "I'm glad that's what you're thinking and not something you've written down, because your grammar needs work," but I'd also say you're wrong.

Sure Valentine's has all the problems listed above, but it's still a day to celebrate love.[3]

Of course, "Wuv, twue wuv," -- like found in "The Princess Bride" -- takes far more than a cheap line or two in a card: it takes up the rest of this column.

True Love is what happens when little Love grows up.

Love is young and unsure, likes to play games, isn't always honest and wants to have fun.

Then one day Love realizes that the things it does aren't fun for long, don't make Love all that happy and really tick people off, so Love takes a three-day mountain retreat to find itself, does some meditation, ditches all the bullplop and grows up into True Love.

True Love isn't scared of what could go wrong in a relationship; it doesn't think about what would happen if it didn't work out.[4]

To True Love, ruining the friendship[5], having to work together, live together or that rather large commitment thing that involves rings and the exchange of vows not working out doesn't matter -- to True Love these things aren't issues because True Love will make everything work out.

True Love may admit there are risks but thinks the rewards outweigh them.

Love keeps making the same mistakes; True Love learns from them.

True love doesn't necessarily require dressing to the nines and spending evenings on the town drinking expensive champagne and eating caviar.

Quick recipe for True Love: spend a Friday night cooking homemade

Spaghetti together, standing over the pot, stirring the sauce, hands locked around the wooden spoon you bought together earlier that day, sharing a romantic moment and then throwing pasta at each other to check and see if it's al dente yet. Let simmer as needed, add paprika. Serves two.

Though sometimes, True Love will, on anything from a few days’ notice to 5 or so minutes conspire and plot to truly sweep you off your feet with a grand gesture—many times when you don’t see it coming[6].

True Love needs equal parts seriousness, romance and fun.

True Love will never ask you if any of its pants make its butt look big, or if you think Jennifer Aniston is "so much prettier than me" when the two of you are watching "Friends."

Likewise, True Love promises to look you in the eyes when talking to you -- not at your chest -- and not to check out others when the two of you are out.

It also knows the answer to any questions about the size of a lady's posterior is "NO."

Yes, sometimes True Love will call "just because," but it knows not to overdo it to the point of being saccharin and nauseating.

True Love wants you to be happy but, unlike Love, would like your happiness to involve it in some way.

True Love will make you laugh, especially when you're crying.

True Love, like a loving parent, is always there for you when you need it, but unlike a parent, tells jokes that begin: "A blind proctologist walks into a pie-eating contest."[7]

Contrary to what Hollywood tells us, True Love rarely, if ever, drops in unexpectedly. It takes work to find, but the payoff is better than any paycheck you'd get from any other job.

True Love can force even the single and sarcastic to wax romantic now and then.

"True love" is seven across in the crossword, with the clue "what every helpless romantic is seeking."

[1] Related story: recently I have on occasion (re when drunk) felt the desire to actually stand outside a certain would-be special someone’s window with a boombox and “In your eyes” playing in the hopes that she’s at least a fan of Say Anything and that if she was to laugh, it’d be in the “you’re so cute and funny” way and not the at my expense way. Fortunately for me, she lived too far away to walk, and I was too smart to attempt driving drunk over there, because the main hitch to my plan was this: I didn’t know which bedroom was her’s. Sure, I knew the apartment, but my drunken guess that it was a front window would’ve been for naught—or a romantic moment with a roommate, or neighbor or good old-fashioned ridicule. But the point is, her window looks out on woods, and it’s pretty high up, and she may read this, so the element of surprise is lost…unless of course I’m drunk in just the right time or place. Also I guess the point is I'm incredibly sappy at times, being that I've never even kissed this girl and it's entirely possible that she may be a lousy kisser.

[2] And debate all you want on whether or not the Forum letters are also “fiction”, I’m not getting involved.

[3] I still cringe a bit here at the literary equivalent to a Frank Zappa “sloppy segue”.

[4] This part I think may be a bit untrue. True Love does think about these things, but either doesn’t care, or stubbornly plows ahead anyway.

[5] If anything, “ruinning the friendship” was as close as I came to directly addressing the original inspiration for this column.

[6] I’ve been on the giving and receiving end of this, and it’s great, let me tell you.

[7] Sad footnote to this: I don’t know the punchline to this joke…unless the lead-in is the punchline.


Sisyphus Walking said...

What the hell made you write a column like that? Yikes. -Ryan

Will Mosher said...

I blame Tom Robbins and deep personal weakness for the occasional romantic comedy. And booze.