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What is this thing called love?

What is this thing called love?
What? Is this thing called love?
What is this thing called? love?
(from a Time magazine article by Gray, Bloch, & Donnelly)

This month, I am relating a semi-true story about love:


I look behind me, and there is no one there. He really is smiling at me.

“Hi, my name is Doug.” He walks up and introduces himself, as if everyone in school doesn’t know his name. As usual, he looks like a model for the latest style.

“Hii,” I stammer.

“Would you like to go out some time?”

“Okay.” I can’t believe it. The most popular guy in school is asking me (the new girl) out.

“Tomorrow is Saturday. How about 7:00?”

I agree and give him my address.

Saturday, I spend a long time deciding what to wear and how to fix my hair.

At 7:05 he drives up in his red convertible and honks the horn.

"Maybe that’s the way it’s done in this town," I think. I go out and get in the passenger’s side.

“You look nice.” He flashes that heart-melting smile.

“You, too.” I reply.

He drives a few miles to the airport and starts talking about how much he likes to watch airplanes. He parks in a secluded spot and puts up the car top. He moves closer, puts his arm around me, and starts to tell me how he noticed me the first day I came to the school. “Do you believe in love at first sight?” he asks.

It doesn’t take me long to figure out he isn’t really interested in airplanes. “See this ring? No girl has ever worn it, but I love you. I’d like you to wear it—if you’ll show me you love me.”

I tell him I have several rings and don’t intend to give up my virginity to wear his. “Please take me home.”

He never talks to me again, but I see him talking to a lot of other girls. A couple of weeks later, a girl I work with tells me she has a date with him.

When I see her at work the day after their date, she is wearing his ring. I don’t tell her about my experience. Within a couple of more weeks, she doesn’t have his ring anymore.

_____________

“What are you thinking about?” my husband asks.

“It’s our class reunion, and a lot of memories are flooding my mind.” I look at the ring on my finger and smile at my husband who has shown me constant love for decades.

I look over at Doug and his newest wife. He doesn’t smile quite as brightly anymore. His laugh is a little too loud. He still wears a big ring and tries to cover his paunchy stomach with expensive clothes.

I mutter, “He who is too big for his britches will eventually be exposed.”

“What?”

“I’m not talking about you, Honey. I love you.”

“I love you, too.” He replies.

I believe him.


Lust is a relentless master       Love is a satisfying servant
Driving a person down             Drawing a person up
The road to sin.                      The path to salvation.

Lust is                                   Love is
Deadly lies                             Living Truth
Unfulfilled longing                   Deep gratification

Lust isolates                          Love unifies
Restricts                                Frees
Hurts                                     Heals
Destroys                                Builds

Lust leaves                            Love leaves
One desperate                       One delighting
To escape a raging inferno       In a cool tranquil breeze

Lust spawns                           Love creates
Abomination                           Adoration   
In the end!                             Everlasting!
 
                     © Arlene Knickerbocker

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