Monday, January 16, 2012

Love Post (blog carnival)

Love Post

(No, that’s not what I call my penis. His name is secret. Don’t ask cuz I won’t tell.)

Love is the ultimate force that makes for the saving choice of life and good against the damning choice of death and evil. Therefore the first hope in our inventory must be the hope that love is going to have the last word. Arnold Toynbee.

In Te-Ta-Te-Ta-Ta, Ernie K-Doe says, "Every time I call your name, I get such a thrill I can't explain." Maybe I should just stop there and you should go listen to Ernie, maybe even a couple of his tunes. Then again, I committed to writing a post for the carnival, so here goes.

My writing style tends toward the didactic. My first thoughts about how to compose a post about love for this blog carnival were in the vein of opening with a dictionary definition, followed by some Greek literary allusion(s) and definitions of the four types of love (agape, eros, philia, and storge) as delineated by our soi-disant philosophical ancestors, the Classical Greeks, then on to some more erudite, pontifical, literary excursions into an intellectually superficial explication of the abstract meaning of “love.”

Ain’t dat a load of crap? Sometimes I forget that I’ve embraced a shit-free diet even though I’m far from perfect at sticking to it. I’ll be the first to admit that we in the Christianized West have gone to great effort to separate intellect from emotion, to the detriment of both. Mens sana in corpore sano. That’s the ticket. Our contemporary popular stereotype of segregating people into nerds and. jocks, one OR the other, makes me very sad. Integration of our various selves into our single self is the key. The ability to fully love starts with self-love and, for me, that’s a difficult thing. I’ve been working on it for a while now; I’m getting there.

Then again, there’s that “love languages” concept, which I don’t find totally idiotic. There’s a kernel of sense in there. Interpreting another person’s style of expressing or feeling love can be a tricky business. Lots of aphorisms apply here; I like “assume positive intent.” That covers a multitude of sins. Or miscommunications. Sin is such a pejorative term.

At a simplistic level, I could boil my comments on this subject down to the classic observation that actions speak louder than words. I know a guy who always says, “I love being a dad.” [N.B. This is an exact quote.] Under my concept of assuming positive intent, I take that statement at face value. Saying that is an expression of love. However, over time, I have observed his actions which sometimes seem somewhat at odds with that phrase. I’m privy to the inner workings of my own family; I’m only guessing when I speak of other families’ dynamics, so what do I really know?

I love being a dad. Saying that is an expression of love and I, too, say that sometimes. I know he loves his kids; but his weltanschauung or Platonic Ideal of “love” is perhaps not congruent with mine. And that’s part of what makes talking about love difficult. It’s awfully subjective and our intellectual concept of ourselves and how we assume we might behave in a certain circumstance, spoken blithely to a receptive audience at cocktail hour, is not necessarily the same as our actual expressions or actions when the metal meets the meat.

I would kill or die for my children. And I say that as a(n imperfect) pacifist. Saying that is an expression of love.

Then again, when I’m short on sleep and Chloe pops up at the foot of the bed at 2:00 AM wanting to discuss the whichness of what or how to unscrew the inscrutable, I am sometimes less than delighted to engage with her. Kill or die? Sure. Lose sleep to help her distill her thoughts about some concept she’s been digesting? Well, shit!, I dunno about that. Losing sleep to review some thought process I ran to completion in my own mind a half a century ago because it’s new to her… Well, that’s an expression of love, too.

Blather, blather, blather… I can drone on forever and ever. To paraphrase the line from the movie “The Princess Bride,” there’s not enough time for me to explain (to my own satisfaction), so let me sum up:

If another person is your TOE, that’s love. This is the poem I wrote for Ronnie for Mother’s Day 2009.

You Are

You are:

the sunlight warming my face, reaching me in a bit more than
minute minute minute minute
minute minute minute minute
after origination.

my beguiling moonlight, (reflected stellar luminescence)
illuminating me only a tick more than 1
ONE! A singularity althought not a singularity.
second after its reflection.
(angle of incidence equals angle of reflection)

my glowing starlight,
distant, imperious, seeming cold but originating from furious fusion,
impacting my existence in a timeframe varying from as little as 4+ years
lightyears, that is, frantic wavicles
streaming madly through dark matter on their way here
to quite a large number from departure.

my big G, difficult to measure quantitatively,
but preeminent as one of the essential components of my universe.
The big G stands for [whatever I choose from its multiexistence in superposition]

my e, both
Einstein's e, derived from mc^2,
and the e representing that exquisite physical value –
the elementary charge of a subatomic particle.
elementary, my dear Watson.

more constant than Avogadro's number
and I know you can make better (guaca)mole.
Avogadro and avocado are NOT congruent!
Only one relates to (guaca)mole,
the other relates merely to a (simple) mole.

beyond mere quantum mechanics
What's beyond the edge of existence?
What's beyond the edge of that?
in that you are both a dimensionful and dimensionless constant

my Anthropic principle,
strong vs. weak becoming moot in this context.
No subjective valuation of strong or weak
only what is.

The Observer [watching!]
effecting and affecting my wave-particle duality,
as I am yours. [watching back!]
We achieve complementarity.

the Big Bang of
us=family{Maier}, transcending, somehow,
for OUR quantum
the uncertainty principle.
principles not rules, right?

my universe.
our universe and we're still just in its Planck epoch,
barely moving into our grand unification epoch.

my TOE!


  1. Frank, I'm really so glad you participated in the Unschooling Blog Carnival. This post was great! AND I was so happy you provided the link to TOE, because at first pass, I had NO idea what you were talking about! lol
    Loved it all! Thanks again! Hope you'll keep participating. :)

  2. Grin! At first glance, it's not obvious that you're giving the highest praise when you call someone your TOE! But Ronnie and the girls are truly my TOE. They make the entire universe make sense for me.