Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Tragic Sense of Love - a M.A.V.I.! production

I speak to you today as the self-proclaimed, and - in my head - literally acclaimed junior lecturer of MAVI, the Men Against Valentine's Initiative. So all y'all Swahili speakers can try forget what the acronym sounds like, if indeed you dare. As MAVI 101 unfolds, you may realize that it is based purely on experience...little empirical research has been put into it, save for a generalized if simplistic assumption that no one is anathema to some sort of affection, a fact derived from the premise that no one man is an island.


They call it the Greatest 3-word Message. To some extent, the hypothesis behind such reasoning can hardly be argued with. For why else would one sit and hope that once said, these three little words will be reciprocated, and not reimbursed? Why else would another run, and beg their God that the other party in their nifty equation of comfort dare not say these three little words?

The human heart, is simply a work of art; a masterpiece of design, construction and brilliant packaging; divine to its last detail, and a tribute to Providence, whosoever that be to you. Befitting then, that these three words relate to this very core of human life. Like any other great work of art, the heart needs these words; like a professional conservator, they revive it, giving it life, and the fortitude to readapt time. Being a passive pacifist myself, these three little words bear significant meaning to life in my vista, and many a times I find my head hermetically wide shut, heart tightly open to the possibilities of the painter's brush.

I. Love. You.

Three simple words. Three very difficult words to utter. Words, however, that flash in our minds every time we think we are in danger...think we may not make it. Perhaps not entirely in that format, but certainly in one format or the other.

They also say our lives flash before our eyes when on the verge of sure death. I say our loved ones do, and you have but to listen to archived phone calls from the victims of 9/11 in their final minute to concur with me:

[I just wanted to tell you that] I love you...that is what they were all saying down their phones, from the hijacked planes and burning was all they had to set against the hatred their murderers [set on them]    - Ian McEwan.

Octavio Paz put it best in saying that 'love is one of the answers humankind invented to stare death in the face: time ceases to be a measure, and briefly, we know paradise'. Yet for some reason, to us it is 'but a universal migraine, a bright stain in the vision that blots out reason' (Robert Graves); indeed, love is a whole climate of inexhaustible resources in the way of opinion.

Only in death does it truly manifest itself. The biggest of cowards will brave their final moments, strong, thinking, focused on a disillusioned past of relationships that consisted in discussing if they really existed. For 'in that moment, there is only love, and then oblivion' (Ian McEwan).

But why only from a distance? Why only this week? Why in that final moment? Why not tell her, tell him, this very spontaneously combustible moment, what you truly feel? You are here. They are here. We. Are. Here. Must we really invite this moment of brilliant inspiration to the exigencies of life?

She had  finally asked me out...and I didn't even get to tell her how I felt...

Love does not mean never having to say we're sorry. It does not mean never having problems. It doesn't even mean a special day every damn second month of the year when funds are at a decided low, and donors far far away. What love means, is meaning our words; meaning our actions; meaning to work through problems. At least insofar as relationships are concerned. It's hard, sure enough, sometimes inhumanely so; for while love at times feels like a tonic to the toxic twists in life, I have in a paltry odd 20-whatnot years come to learn that it can be an addictive poison, a stealthy hallucinogen with a view to bombard your existence to naught. But as Louis de Barnieres once put it, the human heart does like a little disorder in its geometry.

That little disorder...that is love.

'Birds do it, bees do it,
Even educated fleas do it,
Let's do it, let's fall in love...'

                                        -Alanis Morisette or Ella Fitzgerald (depending on the version u heard)

In concluding this lecture, I'll leave you with a series of quotes - aka Course Reference List - about love; you may pick whichever one suits your life this here season. I would prefer that you be conversant with these quotes by Monday, when I and my fellow associates at M.A.V.I. introduce MAVI 102: Cupid is dead.

  • Love is at once the brother, son, and father of death, which is its sister, mother and daughter. - Miguel de Unamuno, The Tragic Sense of Life.  

  • Love is a fog that burns with the first daylight of reality. -Bukowski.

  •  I think about the day I got wrapped around your finger - KEM

  • Only Eros makes sense; knowledge is empty infinity - Cioran

  • Love itself is dead...everybody's just together for convenience - Drew Fraser, Bad Boys of Comedy Sn 2

  • One minute it's love, then suddenly it's like a battlefield - Jorin Sparks

  • I might fall in love with you in a few minutes - Chris Echols #Chips Funga

  • Love is always over in the morning - Andrew Eldritch; Temple of Love

  • At least act like you love me if you don' used to people faking it with me - Damn Fool, Bad Boys of Comedy Sn 2  

  • Love is the eyes of god, hate is his asshole - Perry Farrell

  • Love is not a victory march / It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah - Leonard Cohen

  • Love is the shit that makes life bloom, and you never know when you might step on it [and I add, 'for otherwise you would work like hell to avoid it'] - Michael Front

  • Love is the gun that I fire inside of you - Mary Beats Jane 


  1. At first wen i saw the meaning of the acronym MAVI,i was like,''y'all shdn listen to him. He's misleading u. U shd know the kinda plans he has in store for his ONE on the very day he's trying to talk u out of.''. But i proceeded to read it,only to be utterly impressed. It's tru that lovers shd wait for some special day to do sth special for their significant others,or to even express their heartfelt feelings towards them. It's even absurd to try n equate the every day process that luv shd b,to a single calendar day each yr where u shower them with gifts untold n flowers-in my opinion,the flowers especially r a waste of money;Money that cd buy me chocolates instead,hehe. N who knows,life being the cruel bitch it is sometimes,u cd keep the feelings n special treats in store for the said date only for the day to arrive,only with one of the two of u not around to share it. That's y we shd take each day as a blessing not mince our words;tomorrow may never come.

  2. Stealing my words to impress me...? Me like tres tres mucho! I couldn't agree more dear; there's a way people should jus learn to be spontaneous with matters love, coz at the end of the day, if you leave something undone that you coulda done, chances are that you either won't do it even were a chance to present itself in future, or else you may end up never really getting the chance to do so. Cheers...! Let's see if you'll still be 'UTTERLY IMPRESSED' come Monday...

  3. your words? Let's c... Were u by any chance born b4 the invention of the dictionary? I thot the answer to that question was 'no' too. Your words my a**!! Make it a fat a** actually. Nktutho!

  4. Ha ha ha! Actually I was talkn about that 'not mince words' part; sounds lyk a certain thing I askd u to write a certain someone...


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