Love stories be damned! American literature and western art is full of love stories and people can not get enough of them. The uneducated as well as educated gobble them up with an insatiable appetite and unquenchable thirst. Unfortunately, for the most part they are just lies and delusions.
Here’s the formula: boy meets girl, boy falls in love with girl, boy and girl have to overcome a great obstacle in order to be together, boy and girl get married, boy and girl live happily ever after.
What a load of crap!
That is not reality. If it were then more than 50% of American marriages would not end in divorce, nor would there be single family homes or an immeasurable amount of teenage pregnancies. No, the reality is that the Great American Love Story is really the Great American Lie Story. And the sad thing is that so many people, especially young women, fall into this deception.
It seems that many people really believe in the Cinderella story – even whores. Recently, I was forced to watched “Pretty Woman,” where this rich guy, played by Richard Gere, falls in love with a hooker, played by Julia Roberts. There was a reason I never watched this movie before. It just isn’t sensible. Accomplished rich guys usually get that way because they are sensible and hookers usually are hookers because at the time that is the one practical thing that they can do. (Not too much striving for the common street hooker. Now, the thousand dollar a night hooker might be a slightly different story.) In the most extreme sense (and we are looking at extremes) the two types generally don’t jell well together because sensibility focuses on the long term while practicality is basically about today. And furthermore, both professions demand a very high level of apathy and cold heartedness. So, in that situation, love in the long run is not at all practical or probable.
The movie was full of crap!
Do you know what real love is? Real love is looking at your wife, who has gained 40 pounds after the birth of your third child, laying on the couch eating honey buns and Ben and Jerry’s Chunky Monkey ice cream, and you DECIDE to rub her feet and say something very beautiful in order to make her blush like a teenager. Or when you see your once athletic husband shuffling around in his boxer underwear, scratching his butt, and you DECIDE to grab him around his waist and say to him, “Here is my hero!”
Even though the feeling of emotional love has its place, it is not the sole determinant of “Love.” Love is series of actions that make up events that make up a relationship. Not every action might be perceived as a “good-feeling” one, but as long as it moves the relationship in a positive direction then it can be classified as an act of love.
One of my most favorite love stories is “Jane Eyre.” It is not your Cinderella story, but involves a relationship between flawed individuals. What most impressed about the story was at the end when Jane Eyre tells Rochester how his love for her will wane after years but that they will still remain together as a couple. This is the one true definition of a love story that I have read.