I’m sorry. I do this every now and again. I get a word stuck in my head and I have to go to the breakfront, pull open the top drawer and fish out my little Oxford English Dictionary, ninth edition. I open it up on my way back to the couch and I’m in the K‘s, when I want to be in the L‘s. You ever do that? You try to open the dictionary to the letter you want? I never seem to get the right letter. Well, almost never. Some days I do and those days I usually buy a lotto ticket, but I never win. If I ever open it up to the word I’m looking for, I figure to retire, or, maybe just meet the man of my dreams. Anyway, I find myself thinking, J – K – L and start turning pages. I think I must have missed by a good twenty, maybe, thirty pages, because as I’m flipping pages, I find myself singing this dumb song.
Say the word and you’ll be free.
I finally get to the Le‘s and then the Li‘s.
Say the word and be like me.
It’s so fine. It’s sunshine. It’s the word –
1. A very strong feeling of affection.
Hmmm. I have this cat, Cuddles. He comes up to me, jumps on my lap, rub’s the top of his head against the undersides of my breasts. He purrs, waits for my hand. He’s craving affection and I actually enjoy it sometimes, but he doesn’t love me and I can’t say I love my cat. He was just some dumb kitten I found on the street. I suppose you could say we like each other, put up with one another, but I hardly think it constitutes love. He doesn’t listen to a thing I say. I can’t get him to sit, or, roll over. He digs his Purina and an occasional treat, but he sure as hell doesn’t love me. So, I’m not so sure feelings of affection constitute a very good definition of the word, love.
I mean, associating affection with love is a bunch of crap. I should think a very strong feeling of affection should be associated with the word, need, but when I look up the word need, it doesn’t say a thing about affection and when you look up the word affection? It’s a behavior designed to impress people. Are you impressed with affection? I think it’s a behavior designed to get what you need. It’s a means of taking what you want from another person, regardless of whether it’s something the other person wants to give up, or, not and that certainly has nothing to do with love. So, Oxford people; you need to scratch that. Just draw a line through it. Delete it from your tenth edition or whatever edition you’re actually up to, anyway.
2.A strong feeling of affection linked to sexual attraction.
Who puts these dictionaries together, anyway? Strong feelings of affection linked to sexual attraction have nothing to do with love and everything to do with lust. I met this fireman, once. He took my number and called and called until I finally caved. I mean, why not? I wasn’t seeing anyone and he was offering dinner and drinks. What the hell, right? Why not give the guy a chance? He was big, broad shouldered and a fireman. Maybe, he’s like all things desired. I mean, what more could a girl ask for? He has a job, right?
So, what does he do? He comes by to pick me up a half hour early. Let me tell you something, guys. It’s a girls God given right to keep a man waiting. It doesn’t matter whether or not she’s ready. You have to sit down and wait. Okay? It’s a patience test. You get it? If you’re an impatient guy, you’re going to be a pain in the ass. What’s the point of developing a relationship? It’s just going to go to hell with all the bickering and fighting over how long it takes me to do something. I don’t move fast enough. I don’t get things done, in a timely fashion. Dinner is never ready. If you’re going to pick a girl up on a first date, don’t show up late, but if you can’t be on time, for heavens sake, don’t come early.
Anyway, he shows up early and throws my whole night off. But I go out with him anyway. He picks a nice restaurant makes up for his ignorance regarding car doors. Do you get in your car, lean over and pop the lock, or, do you open the passenger door, wait for the witch to get in, so you can run around the front of the car, big grin on your face ‘cos you think you scored points that maybe add up to getting lucky? Trust me. Don’t get in the car and hit the electric lock thingy. Open the darn door!
So dinner is nice only because the food is good and the waiter serving us looks like a Greek god with a stinking wedding band on. The conversation with Mr. Fireman, however, is a total bust.
“Rangers or Devils?”
That’s the first thing out of his mouth. I kind of look at him and go, “huh?”
“Aw, come on,” he says. “You’re Irish, right? Got to be Rangers. I grew up on the other side of the river. So, it’s Devils.”
“Hockey?” I ask. I find nothing likeable about Hockey.
“I knew you were a big fan,” he says. “We gotta get tickets, you and me. I’ll bet you love the Yankees.”
Actually, I’m a Met fan. He orders carafe after carafe of wine and I drink. I mean, if I get buzzed enough the unreality of the whole thing should seem more real. Three hours later he pushes me through the door with a sloppy, wet kiss and I can’t get him to leave. He’s all over me. So, I finally let my hand drop to his crotch, lick my lips to get his imagination going and shake him off.
He loves me.
“You have the greatest hands,” he says. “Oh god, I think I love you.”
I do him twice, clean him up and all of a sudden, it’s getting late. He has to go. Is that love? Of course it isn’t. That’s pure lust. I think those Oxford babies need to scratch a strong feeling of affection linked to sexual attraction, ‘cos love has nothing to do with it.
A great interest and pleasure in something.
I went back to the restaurant, three times and didn’t have a date with me on any of those occasions. I went purely out of the great interest I had developed for the married waiter. It was pleasurable to see him, have him serve me, but not nearly as pleasurable as it could have been if the guy had only been willing to cheat. Did my going there have anything to do with love? Yeah, right. I think we’re back to that other four letter word, spelled L-U-S-T, which the people at Oxford actually got right, describing it as a strong sexual desire.
Number 4 is the best. The 4th definition of love is a person or thing that you love. Hello? Does anybody see a problem here? How do I know what love is if the previous three definitions aren’t right to begin with. I’m not even sure this word belongs in the dictionary. If you can’t truly define a word, then you shouldn’t put it in your dictionary.
Of course, it is a word. So, maybe, you should devote a whole section to it because it probably means a thousand different things to a thousand different people. It should be defined as a concept, or, it should just be listed as love (noun). Meaning unknown. I mean, what the fuck is love, anyway? Where did the word come from? It was probably some couple in early Sparta playing a crude version of Scrabble. The girl puts down her last four letters, l-o-v-e winning the game by a whole two points and her mate goes ballistic.
“Whot the hell is love? There’s no such word!”
“Are you calling me a cheat?” She asks.
“You’re bloody well right, I’m calling you a cheat!” He says, rising to his feet.
She rises to meet him.
“L-o-v-e,” she cries, drawing her sword. “Love!”
Steel clangs and clatters. Sparks fly, until she kicks him in the groin, doubles him over and drives her sword straight through his spine.
“That!” She says, putting a foot between his shoulders and pulling the blood- drenched blade from his back. “Is love!”
Oh yeah. I forgot to mention tennis. In tennis love is a score of zero. Zip. Nada. What does that tell you about love?