Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Relationship bibles will lay down the law on how to find one. Complete with rules, regulations, red flags, a complete system on how to lock down that ineffable thing called “love”. But I have evidence to the contrary. Here are a couple of love stories that didn’t begin by tripping down a primrose path.

Emily met Mark in a Prozac chat room. Emily, was a 30 something, too-intelligent-for her-own-mental-health woman, distraught, she sought help and was prescribed Prozac. She had a growing concern with the medication’s side effects and looked for knowledge and support in a Prozac chat room. That’s where she met Mark, a highly IQ’d combo of irony and wit that made her feel more alive than any FDA regulated drug. Emily lived in Brooklyn, Mark lived in a cold remote corner of Canada. What’s more, their distance in age would be eyebrow raising to some. The 15 year younger Mark flew in to see Emily for a face-to-face chat. She picked him up at the airport and brought him back to her apartment. He never left. Soon after, they wedded their kindred psychological issues under a hoopa, joining hearts and other body parts, thus making a baby. 10 years later, they are together, raising an exceptional child who is joyful and bright beyond his years. Although he has inherited some quirks from both parents, as Emily likes to say, “he’s a happy kid.” Emily and Mark’s marriage is still challenged by some of the issues that they came to the chat room with, yet their relationship is infused with a strong dose of humor, the stuff that brought them together back in the good old Prozac days.

Jen was a gifted writer and abominable waitress. Her dual pursuits were fueled on a steady diet of red wine and Makers Mark. Her cocaine dealer had hours that rivaled Dominos, with the same 30 minute delivery guarantee. She lived in a refrigerator-less 250 square foot apartment, writing in squalor until the sun came up, or right up until her brunch shift where she would make just enough to re-up her creative fueling expenses. A long-haired good looking bar owner caught her eye. His zero percent body fat body resonated with her, her frame just hovering around the 100 lb. mark. They bonded over 4 AM drunken fuck fests. Their 3AM ‘dinner dates’ consisted of emptying bottles of whiskey, cartons of cigarettes, and multiple 50 bags of cocaine. Jen got knocked up, and several months later gave birth to a healthy baby boy. She moved into Mark’s upscale building with no ring on her finger, not a single “I love you” whispered in her ear – sending Mark’s friends into a tailspin of horror and a new allegiance to latex condoms. Years later, Jen and Mark are cocaine free, have a new baby girl to complete the matching set of pretty children, and have recently moved into the brownstone that Mark completed lovingly renovated for his now picture perfect family. They are not married, but swear that they are hopelessly in love. And although Jen doesn’t bond with the Bugaboo baby carriage status moms, she could almost pass as one. Until she opens her mouth, I am happy to report that she has the same wry annoyed take on life, all without the aid of drugs and alcohol.

These are stories, not my version of a “How To” book, because there is no “How To”. Love can flutter in like a dove carrying a sweet note on scented paper. Or careening in, car out of control, love rising off of the wreckage, like the smell of spilled gasoline. So capture that dove in a gilded cage, or shoot him dead with a shotgun. Either way, the story could end on a happy note.


  1. Only 15 years difference. Don't age me ;)


  2. Hey, Emily. You are now three years younger!