Sunday, February 14, 2016


My cat Scratch knows that I accidentally posted this yesterday, long before it was ready to be seen. She just read the "revised" version and told me that it isn't any better than the first one was. The only thing she likes is her photo.

BTW - I did read the comments that were posted. Sorry for the mess up.

Nothing interesting here. Just random, disjointed thoughts possibly inspired (instigated?) by St. Valentine's Day.

Picture this:
I'm in my early 20's, the sole guest invited to a Valentine's Day supper. The setting is a lavishly impressive  old Spanish-style mansion in Beverly Hills. It's dinner by candlelight in an opulent dining room with a massive wood-beamed ceiling and intriguing alcoves. Braised Greek chicken, artichokes, vintage white wine......
It's the first time I've ever tackled artichokes. My congenial host graciously demonstrates the rudiments - plucking off the "leaves" and dipping them.
Supper was only the first part of an incredibly romantic evening....

I was young and reasonably desirable.  I had my pick of everything good. My life was very full. Chaotic, reckless, devastatingly dangerous, but full nevertheless.

Long Ago

Picture this: 
It's a helluva long time later (let's not count the years - it's too painful). I'm now living alone with three cats in a drafty mountain shack in the wilds of Tennessee. No Valentine plans. No Valentines. No nothing - but dreary snowdrifts, perpetual problems, and persistent annoyances in various  degrees throughout my rapidly deteriorating body.
Translation: I'm falling apart.

California is now a faraway memory. Most of the people that I once loved are dead.

My empty days yawn with dusty recollections. 

Am I complaining? Naw. Just thinking. And marveling at how quickly time can pass

So, what would I like for Valentine's Day this year? Besides a blank check from a wealthy benefactor... 

I'll settle for a pizza. Maybe a big box of chocolates. And an even bigger bottle of wine. Nothing fancy. I just want to unscrew the cap and guzzle.
I'm easy to please.

I'm now a raunchy shadow of my former self
(mercilessly sunburned and far too much beer)

Love? I'm all for it.
Do I believe in it? Only in varying degrees. Love is largely an illusion, a fantasy, it's very often confused with lust or infatuation. True love is extremely rare and enormously complicated. It isn't an easy ride. Love requires dedication, hard work, compromise, tolerance.

But this isn't an essay and I'm no expert. I'm just tossing random thoughts around the room. And they're bouncing off empty walls. I've always been adamantly opposed to marriage - possibly because I'm fiercely independent and selfish. I've never needed another person to feel whole. Perhaps I've simply endured too much shit in the past - - from my parent's insanely dysfuctional marriage....and from others who have seriously complicated my life.

I've never known a truly happy marriage. The happiness is most often feigned. Couples simply learn to tolerate each other. Eventually they grow to be exactly alike - which is scary.

Have I ever been in love? Absolutely. I've been in lust hundreds of times. I've been in true love several times. My biggest problem? Fear of commitment, unwillingness to commit. I squandered many golden opportunities. Many.

Regrets? It's far too late for regrets.

So, what is your opinion of Valentine's Day, Jon?

Hey, I thought you'd never ask. I am extremely romantic, passionate, and sentimental. But I'm not about to be forced into expressing it all on one designated day. I prefer to express my emotions spontaneously....and honestly. Valentine's Day is crass commercialization and craftily organized bullshit.

If you believe in the prospect of love, if you think you have obtained it, even if you've lost it and it only lives in memories....

keep it eternally in your heart,
and, well......

Have a pleasant Valentine's Day.




  1. oh scratch, you are so pretty!

    HVD, jon; the tales from your youthful years paint an interesting picture.

    1. Scratch is indeed pretty - but she's jealous of Scruffy and Bosco.
      I have a LOT of youthful tales to tell.....

  2. Happy Valentine's Day, Jon! I think pizza sounds perfect :-)

    1. Dylan, I can never get enough pizza. I hope your Valentine's Day is a very pleasant one. It's going to be a snowy day here in TN.

  3. Cliff and I consider Valentine's Day a stupid tradition. It might be nice for young people who are courting, and it was fun for me as a child, trading the little valentines and candy hearts. Other than that, it's just a day to make Hallmark rich.

    1. The novelty of Valentine's Day does wear off considerably as we age (not that we're old, mind you).
      I do remember those little penny valentines that we had to exchange in school. It was fun, mostly because they were such innocent times.

  4. My own random thoughts 'inspired' by your post above:-

    Never been in love and no one's been in love with me. (Awwwwww!)
    Only ever received one Valentine's card - about 30 years ago, an anonymous mischief one from a work colleague (though always had a shrewd idea who it was).
    Never had an artichoke and wouldn't know how to go about it. Does it have to be cooked? Search me!
    (Also, strange as it may seem for someone having been veggie for 50+ years - never had nutloaf).
    By the time I'd opened up your previous post it had disappeared so I missed the comments. Still, I hope they entertained you.

    Now please give my special day greetings to your little threesome, while you go and enjoy the rest of your V.D. ;-)

    1. Scratch, Scruffy, and Bosco all send their Valentine love to you and your assorted kitties.

      The only valentines I ever received were from relatives and friends. I can't remember receiving any from ardent admirers. I didn't know you are a "veggie". From what I recall, artichokes have to be steamed. They really don't have any flavor or appeal, so I don't know what all the fuss is about. Perhaps their unusual appearance generates the allure....

      It's afternoon on Valentine's Day as I write this and it's snowing. I'm thinking about "La Boheme".

    2. Artichokes rather like cucumber and lettuce then, in that they're there, so we eat them even though they are relatively tasteless - only made worthwhile when something's added to give them a bit of 'zing'. I'd still like to try an artichoke though. One for my 'bucket' list.

      My Blackso, Noodles and Patchie send affectionate greetings to yours - as I do. Have a fine day yourself. Maybe signs of Spring are starting to appear? Can but hope.

  5. Ah, the art of the artichoke! Perhaps my most romantic meal, so long ago.
    Memories are incredibly comforting. Painful sometimes ... but like the old song says, "They can't take that away from me."

    Aside from decorating and hanging our white paper bags beneath the chalk board, I've not been a fan of Valentines since 2nd grade.

    When you wrote, "I prefer to express my emotions spontaneously....and honestly."
    ... well, I just fell a little harder in like with you. :)

    PS - Scratch's expression looks, in a word, sultry!

    1. I don't know why artichokes are associated with romantic meals. Heck, I'll take the chocolates. I actually used to like those little penny valentines when I was a kid. And I liked the little red cinnamon hearts.

      I suppose my post was a little harsh concerning this national (international?) day of love.....but I tried to be honest. It's always reassuring when people fall in "like" with me.

      Is it still near 90 in AZ? It is presently snowing here.

  6. Keeping " eternally in your heart..." is good plan for love. I can deal with St. Valentine's Day. It's St. Patrick's Day I can't work up an opinion about.

    1. Dear "Dreamy Heart-Breaker", even though we're related I don't think we have a drop of Irish blood between us. I suppose we should just eat all the valentine chocolates and be satisfied.
      I hope you had a very pleasant "V" Day. Sappy

      (People who haven't read the comments on my other blog are going to wonder what the hell I'm talking about)

    2. Sappy, Dreamy, we could've been in Snow White!

  7. While I'm still out and about on my excursions I just wanted to pop in and read your blog and wish you a lovely St .Valentines. Lovely post. If not away, id love to hang out. That pizza and libation and chocolate sounds all as tempting......♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

    1. Hey, I appreciate the visit - and I hope you had a delicious Valentine's Day.

  8. Jon,
    Your observations on love are very interesting. I have to admit I've never figured out the line between love and lust. In my situation I never lusted for Bill but grew to love him and after 52 years as a couple, I could never leave him because (I think) I love him that much. My current boyfriend (that guy from Canada) I seriously lust after, going on the third year. I (think) I do love him because I can't imagine my life without him. With both men, our relationship has had continues to have "speed bumps." If there is such a thing as true love it was probably what I had with my long departed pets. When they passed was the only time I've ever cried in my life. If this isn't love (sounds like song lyrics doesn't it?) then whatever I'm "in" with these two men, it sure does feel good.
    You're still a young man Jon, and believe me you have plenty of time in your life to have love walk into your life. I hope that wondrous occasion happens soon for you because believe me, their is nothing like it. It far transcends the lust part of being in love but I also have to say that the lust part isn't bad either, especially for this 74 year old. (smile)

    1. When I was young I had a romantic, fantasy notion about love and I fell in "love" quite often. My feelings and emotions have changed over the years. True love take a long time to fully cultivate - - as you said, you grew to love Bill over 52 years. That is true love.

      Who knows, perhaps Cupid and his arrows will find me someday, here in the wilderness.


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