Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Best love stories



Not sour grapes, but bittersweet ones

There are no such things, I think.  

It's 4am Valentine's Day and I have not gotten a second of sleep. I had just finished chatting with a friend -- ah, the trials and tribulations of murky relationships! Afterward I remembered I could not go to sleep just yet. I had a deadline for a business magazine story I was looking forward to write.

Apparently, I looked forward to writing this more. 

I can just imagine the circus on social media today -- the happily coupled post giddy photos of themselves and their flowers and their restaurants and their hotel getaways. I will have no such thing. I am officially single, thriving and unapologetic. 

Believe you me, I have had my share of love stories and have heard even more of them. My favorite podcast in the world is Modern Love -- the New York Times' gift to humanity, a collection of elegantly written narratives about that glorious human experience.  I said glorious, not happy or sweet or simple. 

Who knows how many stories there are out there? There must be one story at least for every person on earth. I said at least. I am just one person, for example, but I can offer at least four. On average, one for each decade of my life. 

Traditional media has also been filled with "inspiring stories" -- those that defied odds, endured time or distance or both, gave rise to heroic deeds, ended in blissful I dos.

There are more powerful ones, I think. Those that did not come to be -- unrequited, unrealized, unconsummated. Some sites on the Internet offer us exquisite letters of famous writers. They read so well today, decades or even centuries afterward. One wonders: will I be able to experience something as consuming, as riveting, as life-altering as the one they describe? There is melancholy, and loss, and regret, but there is also the recognition of It.It with a capital I.

Life soon takes over, and one is sucked up by the things one has to produce, deliver, perform. A glimpse is enough. A little of bitter, a little bit of sweet, and a whole lot of glory.


Now my deadline. It will be daylight in a while.

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