Tag Archives: Romance

Love

...or it should be.

They say it doesn’t anger or boast; it isn’t selfish or spiteful.

They say all human interaction is driven by one of two emotions – love or fear.

Today we celebrate the former.  Even if you happen not to have live-in-lovin pseudo-scheduled at your crib tonight, chances are someone loves you nonetheless.  Your friends do; your family does.  We can celebrate love how ever it presents itself, no? And we can be fortified by it no matter who gives it, right?

bell hooks said love is an act of will:  “the will to extend one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or another’s spiritual growth.”  Love is action, selfless action.  It takes work and commitment to interact with folks from a position of love, as the act of loving is often tested and challenged and stretched.  But if it’s real, then it’s resilient.  And, like a good spanx, love snaps back.

Just last weekend, I celebrated my birthday with a group of folks who, at one time or another (including now), couldn’t be gathered in the same room together.  But time and love heals.  And as a result, I was treated with the best rendition of the Black version of Happy Birthday I’ve ever heard.  Thank y’all for that.  🙂

I’m convinced that if you lead with love, you’ll get it back.  Treat each other right, and love one another.  Because, yeah, karma can be a bitch.  But she can also be the homie who shows up to your party with good liquor and barbecued brisket.  It all depends on where your heart’s at.

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In a Sentimental Mood

...come on and go with me. come on over to my place.

I’m lovin expressions of love.  Not so fond of those grocery store red roses in cellophane wrapping, and the shitty chocolates that most cats will buy their ladies today.  But I do love the sentiment behind it — the “thought that counts.”  Of course, what you do on Valentine’s Day shouldn’t be limited to Valentine’s Day, but that’s a lesson for another day.  Because even if you aint shit the other 364 days of the year, Valentine’s Day is your yearly reminder of how to be a decent significant other to somebody.

Be grateful for the forgiving and gracious nature of the feminine species.  Because even if you select from the Valentine’s options at CVS, she’ll still appreciate it.  Of course, you can do better, but at least you did something.  And that probably carries enough weight to get you a good kiss, a lil bit of tongue, and a few brushes up against her booty.  However. Aim higher and you just might be in for a long night, and breakfast in the morning.  A little bit of effort can yield glorious benefits.

Because I’m a giver and shit, I’ll share a few tips for setting the stage for a sexy evening.

  • Buy flowers.  Or pick em’.  But do have them and ensure that they are gorgeous and fresh and free of filler — toss that baby’s breath shit and the extra greenery.  Choose an exceptional flower and you won’t need the extra distractions.
  • Be creative.  I think cats wrap themselves in I aint got no money, or me and my girl don’t need no gifts bullshit because they still don’t get that it’s never really about the gift, or the coins you spent on it.  A unique expression of your affection may not cost you much more than time.  And you can give that.  —  Don’t be no fool though, Tiffany’s will go a hell of a lot farther for you than a homemade card.
  • Respect the element of surprise.  There’s no substitute for opening the front door to a room filled with candlelight and rose petals, and the right song.  Except maybe if it’s the bathroom door, and the tub’s overflowing with bubbles.  Yeah, make that happen.
  • The “mix tape.”  Fuck whatcha heard about romance being corny and/or dead.  It works. Sifting through your life’s soundtrack, plucking out the song that best describes that dope ass feeling you felt that time with that person requires a certain level of engagement and attention.  And she loves that.  Trust me, she loves that.  Besides, the music and that memory will last well after the chocolates are stale and the flowers have died.  And that stuffed animal is more or less in the way of your real, adult life.
  • “Turn off all the lights, and light some candles instead.”

I feel like every blog worth its arrogance has a Love Song List as its rite of passage.  In keeping with tradition, here’s my offering.  You’re welcome, mufukkas.

1.  Garden of Love – Raheem DeVaughn

2.  Adore – Prince

3.  Sparkle – Cameo

4.  I Wanna Be Closer – Switch

5.  Superhero – Esthero

6.  Hey Now – Carl Thomas

7.  Easy Conversation – Jill Scott

8.  Love TKO – Teddy Pendergrass

9.   Send It On – D’Angelo

10. Submerge- Maxwell

11. You Move Me – Cassandra Wilson

12. Closer – Slum Village

13.  Reasons – Faith Evans

14.  Lay Your Head on My Pillow – Tony! Toni! Tone!

15.  The Look of Love – Isaac Hayes

*Feel free to edit accordingly, but do apply liberally.*

Happy Valentine’s Day, yall!


All in Love is Fair

I’ve learned over the years that love is the one subject that has no rules. Of course, people place restrictions on love, and other people choose either to abide by them or not.  But, intrinsically, there are no rules in love.

What?  because I love you, I can’t love nobody else?  Or maybe I can’t love someone else as much as I love you, or the way I love you.  But how do you tell love that?  “lookahere love,  you gotta reign it in.  can’t be lovin anybody if you love somebody already.”

Folks don’t know what to do with love.  They feel like they gotta bottle it.  make sure nobody else can see it or have it.  can’t accept that love is promiscuous in a sense.  and if you’re lucky enough for somebody to give it to you, you can cherish it.  But you don’t get to hoard it.  We think loving someone and having them love you back is a zero sum game. Once I give my love to you, then by this logic, I should have nothing left to give.  Zero love reserves left.

But I’m a human being — an Aquarius human being — blessed with uniquely large capacities for love and friendship, and relationship.  And reason.  I understand that your love for me doesn’t preclude your love for him, or her.  And I’m ok with that.  I know where I stand with you and as long as you honor me and nurture us in our relationship, I’m ok.

Love and faith are opposites of fear.  Fear operates on absolute terms — black or white, this or that, her or me.  Because if we recognize that life is shades of gray, and that love is the quintessential gray area, then we are terrified of what that means.  We think we can’t rest comfortably in knowing (and feeling) that the love really is there.  Or that the person we love will honor it the right way.  But that’s not love’s fault.  Check the cat you chose to give your love to.  Is she worth it?  Or are you selfish about it?  Or did you make a bad love choice in the first place?

We often expect that love will look like it does in Disney films.  We’re all princess so-and-so waiting for prince or princess so-and-so to sweep us off our feet and pledge fealty to us and our interests only.  For all time.  And there’s nothing wrong with that when it happens.  There’s nothing wrong with wanting that.  Except that life isn’t a Disney film.  And most folks aren’t Bella or Cinderella, or Prince Charming.  We want love and we want to keep it, but we’re conditioned not to trust it unless it’s all encompassing and effectively forsakes all others, save family.  And even that’s shaky sometimes.

So, with less than 48 hours separating us from a new year, and a fresh start, I’ll make my New Year’s resolution in the here and now:  I resolve to make no apologies for the way I love and my commitment to it.  In other words, if I love, then I love.  I love hard and I love well.  And I’m committed to nurturing what we have.  I won’t live in fear.  And I won’t entertain fear shrouded in the guise of love.  Some shit you just have to trust.  And you can’t be afraid of that either.

With Love,

MAG