Monday, February 13, 2006

What love really is

Most guys don’t love Valentine’s Day. It’s a holiday designed to trap them. If you’re dating more than one woman, you’re dead. If you get the wrong gift, you’re dead. If the gift is too cheap or too elaborate, you’re dead. If you get her a humorous card with Bush on the front you’re dead (although in that case you deserve to be).

Or worse, they love the gift and card too much. Then you’re REALLY dead.

My problem with Valentine’s Day is that it’s also my birthday. Try going out to a nice celebration dinner when every restaurant is packed, all the prices are jacked way up, and everyone is trying so hard to create a “romantic atmosphere” that when their date isn’t looking they’re popping Lexapros like Tic Tacs.

Still, not to be a cynic I would like to offer an explanation for what love really is. It comes from that font of romance -- an episode of TAXI (written by Ken Estin).

Louie is trying to win back his girlfriend, Zena. He asks if she loves him. She says she doesn’t know what love is. He tells her she’s in luck because he does. And he’s the only person alive who can say that. He’s read what everyone else says love is and they’re always wrong. She finally asks him what it is, and Louie says:

“Love is the end of happiness!

The end. Because one day all a guy’s got to do to be happy is to watch the Mets. The next day you gotta have Zena in the room watching the Mets with you. You don’t know why. They’re the same Mets, it’s the same room…but you gotta have Zena there.”

****
That to me expresses more heartfelt love than any bouquet or bling or blowout dinner. Maybe you should change your plans and just get together in her apartment. Especially if you planned on dining at the Lobster in Santa Monica. I’d like to be able to eat my dinner without being so wedged into a little table that the next person’s lobster is on my plate.

Thank you and happy Valentine’s Day.

16 comments:

af said...

You think places are busy on your birthday, try New Year's Eve.

Jutratest said...

Ahh my wife's birthday is on Valentine's day too.

Good to know she's in good company.

shecanfilmit said...

Happy Birthday!

Ken Levine said...

Thank you, shecanfilmit.

Cafrine said...

While my birthday is not on a holiday (Hallmark or otherwise) I do share it with five members of my family, my best friend, one teacher, four girls and one boy I went to school with, as well as our postman. So while the meal prices are fine, one does tend to get a bit lost in the crowd.

Happy Birthday, Ken. I hope you have a good one.

Anonymous said...

That's funny. I STILL remember that bit from Taxi almost word-for-word and it made a big impact on me.

Actually, MANY episodes of that show had a helluva lot of excellent points, and were made in such a great way they stuck.

Joshua James said...

Happy birthday, buddy - look at it this way, you're turning thirty, you're finally an adult now;)!

Hawise said...

Happy birthday and, if you have the weather for it, a picnic with a bottle of fine wine, cheese and french bread is as romantic as hell and not near as crowded as a restaurant.

doggans said...

My birthday falls on Independence Day Weekend. It's nice because I can pretend the random fireworks I hear going off at all hours of the night are in my honor.

Oh, hi. I'm David. Long time reader, first time poster.

Happy birthday, good sir!

MaryAn Batchellor said...

Happy Birthday!

Just Jess said...

Happy Birthday; sorry about it being on Valentine's Day. Your quote from "Taxi" was really poignant -- I think it's the most interesting explanation of love I've heard yet.

What I wish to know is why you would want to fight the mad rush of people trying to buy their way into someone else's bed tonight when you can relax and share making dinner with someone you like being with?

af said...

Happy birthday, sir! Hope it's a good one.

Julie O. said...

The good news is you get to gorge yourself on cake and chocolates 'cause your B-day falls on V-Day.

Always look on the bright side of life...

Have a happy Day, Ken :)

Law Student & Aspiring Sitcom Starlet said...

Birthdays are great. I was thinking today Valentine's Day is kind of "all about me" and my husband totally caters to that mantra. So . . . at your house, Valentine's Day has to be all about you AND your wife . . . thats definitely a challenge!! And I have no wise advice for how to balance that. Just a . . . Wow double whammy have fun! =). And Happy Birthday.

Westacular said...

Happy Birthentine's Day!

Paul Duca(tomservo56954@comcast.net) said...

Ken...just remember that Mama Beaver considers you the bestest Valentine's Day gift she ever got. Heck, my mother thinks that way, and she merely brought me home on February 14th (I was born the 10th).