Monday, February 1, 2010

Trying to Find Love

Some people are very aggressive about looking for love from an early age.

"I set up an office in the corner of the classroom in first grade," a wry barista offered up this morning. "The girls would come in, and I would kiss them."

My head went back and I gave him his deserved guffaw. I had already given him a gold star.

"That is great!" I said, "I love that!"

He shook his head. "Sadly, I had to give up my office. The teacher didn't like it..."

I smiled. "Too bad..." I told him the story of my romantically-inclined son who, early days of kindergarten, was hugging all the girls. I think I've written it here before that the teacher was a little non-plussed, imagining that all the parents would complain.

But there were no complaints, only comments about how, "my daughter can't stop talking about Oscar!" Playdates were scheduled, including one where a little girl barricaded the door and tried to hide Oscar's backpack when I arrived. She wanted him to stay.

It is funny how some people believe in true love from early on, others eschew it or just don't think about it constantly, obsessively. Some people are skeptics, imagining that love can only do so much, that it brings, often, more harm than good.

My new friend at a local cell phone store bought a hedgehog recently and told me the fabled story of hedgehogs, which I somehow hadn't heard.

As it goes, he regaled me, hedgehogs want very much to be close, to be together, but because of their prickles, being close is painful...

I laughed when I said this, he being the same guy who said he can't look at dogs 'cause they would see his soul and wouldn't like what they saw.

"People are so funny, they seem to buy pets based on how much love they think they deserve," I said. Dogs, mostly, will love you though it depends on the breed, cats are pretty aloof but can sometimes allow for some love, hedgehogs clearly offer up a bit of the self-fulfilling prophecy of love not working out. I imagine there are a whole host of pets that say a lot about how people love and get loved that I have yet to explore. I look forward to my research. I think it will tell me a lot about human love.

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