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John Shore

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Ah, Love. It's So Like a Tapeworm.

Posted: 07/27/10 03:57 PM ET

People always say that love is an unfathomable mystery no mortal can fully understand. I, on the other hand, think love is like a tapeworm. It's invasive, sucks the life out of you, makes you take drugs, makes you walk funny, and causes you to spend a lot of time alone in the bathroom, crying.

Of course, there's also much to be said in favor of love. And Shakespeare, as everyone knows, said most of it. Who can forget the Bard's inspiring words, "Forsooth, mine own blinded love-seared crimson muscle-pump! Be still, internal idiot! Blast thee for thine heavenly, thrice-cursed flannigenans, 'ere by my failieth gruen beaierurnaut yon glibbet! Dringlie-yay, dringlie-yay! Mort!"

But that's Shakespeare. He was a genius. The rest of us just have to struggle along as best we can.

Speaking of sex. When it comes to love, sex can get very confusing. Especially for men. For women, there's nothing at all confusing about the proper relationship between love and sex. They believe love and sex are -- or at least certainly should be -- inextricably wed. But men are, well, men. Which means they're inclined to be ... well, men. Which means they're inclined to be rude. In fact, asking a man to stop being rude about sex is like asking a bear to stop being hairy about its body. It's just not in the cards. To men, sex is rude. You take the rudeness out of sex, and men start shrugging and wondering what's on TV.

So, that's a problem .

If anyone out there knows the solution to this problem -- if anyone can or has figured out how to make men and women think of sex in the same way -- please email that answer to me. Thank you.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

One thing I've learned in my many years of falling just short of correct about pretty much anything having to do with romance, sex, or love, is that women do not think sex is as funny as men do. Men see sex as a never-ending source of first-rate yukkels. There's so precious little about sex that isn't funny, is why. Unless you're a woman. Then you probably don't find sex all that hilarious. At least, not in a good way. A woman laughing during sex is rarely, if ever, a thing to be desired. It usually means that she's either spontaneously reacting to the existential irony of her current mortification, or she's got one eye on a Will Ferrell movie. Either way, once she bursts out laughing, it's time for her lover to excuse himself, leave, and not come back until he's spent fourteen years becoming an enlightened swami who no longer cares if his sexual techniques inspire hilarity in his partner.

Of course, it's completely understandable why women take sex and romance a lot more seriously than men. After all, a man who has just had sex is very often compelled to eat a ham sandwich and watch TV. On the other hand, a woman who has just had sex is very often compelled to nine months later have a baby. And while it certainly can be difficult to get the perfect amount of mustard on a ham sandwich, the two really don't compare in overall hassle. So a woman has to be careful. She can't afford to sleep with a man who won't take seriously his responsibility to afterward stick around and feed her ham sandwiches.

And men, wanting, after all, to do the right thing, do stick around, sublimating their apparently genetic propensity for wandering by incessantly switching TV channels, being chronically incapable of making up their minds, and dying four years earlier than women from the constant stress of having to hide their porn.

Anyway, back to the timeless allure of romance.

Ah, romance. If there's one thing upon which we can all agree, it's that nothing says romance like a big bouquet of flowers that stays fresh for about three days before it starts attracting gnats and smelling worse than death.

Unless you put in the vase that white Prolong-A-Stalk stuff that comes with flowers. Then you can get about a whole week of not-dead-seeming flowers.

Of course, then you have to stand there stirring water in a vase, which is like ... eating cupcakes with a fork, or ... putting two different shoes on your feet, or something.

My poor wife. We've been married a while now, and not a day goes by that I don't count that as a reason to feel sorry for her.

 
 
 

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