Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The L Word

I'll start with this. Read that first. What kicked me about it is this bit -

"We’re tal­king away, when sud­denly I inte­rrup­ted her quite suddenly.
“Hmmmm…” I say, “You’re kinda cool… I’m kinda cool…”
A slight pause.
“We should kiss!” I exc­laim, rather jokingly.
Cindi looks at me for a moment, says nothing, then sud­denly leans over and plants a big one on the ol’ lips. Hurrah!"

Now I think you have sufficient reason to read it.

Secondly, I was watching Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and will soon continue onwards from where Harry and Ron are stuck with finding someone to go with to the Yule Ball. After being clueless about what to do, just when they sorta get their act together, the turn of events is unexpected. Harry runs in to Cho (who's been eyeing him a while) for the second time and she turns hims down because she was going with someone else, before extremely apologetic about it. This is after Harry and Ron take pains at figuring out how the heck to actually get a date for the evening, watching others do it way more graciously. Ron has a worse experience with Fleur Delacour. What hit me (while I accept that it's just a movie and representation of society's ways way particularly over in England) is the irrational social stigma that dogged everyone who hadn't got a date yet.

Now to the point. Love. As expected (with our miniscule minds), we have converted love, with all that it means, into a silly little word that we throw around like fishing hooks as a consequence of many things that we don't really understand about ourselves. What is wonderful, layered, fun, fulfilling and which has many more noble qualities has been turned into a badly abused meme that is confused and linked disproportionately with dating, romance and being "with" and "without" among the lot. We use it as an excuse for our insecurities, lack of identity and rather classy sexual animalism - like animals when they just do what they do because that's what they do. Like we just gotta have it.

The problem is that, while we barely understand it ourselves, and why we need it as bad in the first place, we have adopted very self-conflicting paradigms, or multiple paradigms to live with it in order to justify the conflicting nature of our beliefs about it. We are commitment freaks. One of the paradigms we follow is to commit, but commit first. Before we know what we're getting into. Before we discover ourselves in the light of each other. Before we know what the heck we are committing to. As long as we're committed, with no clause as to what should happen in case of that commitment being broken. It's a recipe for heart break. A date is no more just a date. It's a code word for the above, more so in case it all goes wrong. You don't go from dating someone to gradually being in a relationship. You get locked in immediately, into a relationship, and have to squeeze your way out at any point hence, like it is an obligation to stay in once you're in. You've default signed a contract,
of course absolutely without your knowledge, the consequence of which is only death by separation. Then when there is no space but squeezing out space, you blame "love". There are exceptions of course. Some people adopt sensible paradigms of response to the constrictions that life presents and don't choose to dig a pit they can fall in. Without them, love would really be buried six feet under. There would be no proof of happy romance at all.

Given that we barely have a clue about what we're getting into, why would we want to pre-seal the deal before we know what's going to unfold? If we like the danger, why do we then complain of heart break - a natural consequence of a bad choice of risk? Bad sportsmanship?
We're always "with" someone, as we speak. I wonder what happens when we're "without" them. Do we become half of what we were, and therefore incomplete? And now onto find a better half so we can feel complete ASAP? If no man is an island, we are all islands together, but a bunch of individual islands before we met. If we needed completion before we met another, we have some home issues to solve, or together we are just an awesome doublesome which, in any case, makes it more awesome. No security or identity issues there.

Instead of playing out our romantic dreams and aspirations and bringing them to life in these ways, as fast and desperately as possible, I suggest, in the midst of all this hidden confusion, to unname love and take out all these forms of expression - walls and barriers. We should let it be what it is and express it as it comes. The moment we give it a form, and box it in, it probably won't spread its wings to fly and take you along with it. Instead of being deterministic, we should be explorative. When in a box, we can get protectionist about it. It can be something we run and hide to, not in a warm, fuzzy manner. When out without walls, it will be something we run to like it's a green open field for miles and miles surrounded by beautiful waterfalls, hills, caves and the sea and its hush waves.

When we give it a name, it's a place we aspire to reach, sit pretty and get old after we get there. When nameless, we won't really know whether we're there yet to even think of that, let alone the possibility. When it's the word we've had it become, we trust those magical three words to capture our heart's desire. When it's not, it's so much more fun, and effort we look forward to to go along with. The poetry will start to flow and love will become just the word it can reasonably hold the meaning of. We will start to describe love in terms of what it makes actually do when we're actually in love like when free men are - bound men cannot know the feeling. Jump down a waterfall. Fly to the moon and actually bring it down. Go on an everlasting hitchhike. We will use roo (like Van Morrison), belong, keep... or even go with Hugh McLeod with his "
You’re kinda cool… I’m kinda cool…"  

Anything but 'love'. Bleh!

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