Love, love, love. That's what it's all about. Yup, this week's column: You'll love it.
So we're headphone waggin' to a New Year's mix tape we made, and up funks Earth, Wind & Fire from their 1993 CD, Millennium (How prophetic--).
The "L" Word
"The 'L' Word" (©1993, White, Lind, Brown & Willis)
All I ever wanted was your love/L's the word in the wind/Love has touched my heart again/L's the word that I heard/From your lips, your hips, your fingertips ...
"Oooh," we're thinking, "isn't that exactly how love works?" It communicates its intentions in the most intangibly deliberate ways -- sometimes unintentionally, without words, with a glance, a beat, a whisper, sometimes with a bellow and bray -- sometimes spiritually, sometimes physically. Whether it emerges through an organic process, as comfortably and naturally as breathing air or erupts with the fire of a cataclysmic bolt from the blue, it is what it is -- an undeniable (albeit, sometimes unwelcome) phenomenon.
"Love" is the word of the week, it seems, as events for the next few days are steeped in the goopy stuff. And if you're wondering if there's a message in the music, keep reading -- Did ol' Valentine have any idea what havoc his canonization would wreak?
Oh, you know us: romantic soppy sorts, sentimental fools, doormats for the dirty boots of love. Mmmmm, yeah, scuff us up real good; we wear those treadmarks well. What's dignity or self-respect or pride, foolish pride when it comes to love? Doe-eyed, dopey-grinned, and oblivious to ambivalence, we are so far across that threshold; there's no looking back. Not a pretty picture, is it? Why is that? In a society so awash in romantic images, offering desires and pleasures at the drop of a hat, why are the real, true, 3-D manifestations of our four-letter conundrum viewed with distrust and suspicion? Why is "sentimental" an insult? Likewise with "mushy," "romantic," or "crushed-out?" What's up with that? Why do we look down our noses at the very intoxicating elixir that makes this coily mortality less a bear to bear? Or in the words of our bathetic writer colleague Wayne A. Brenner (culled from one of his juicy e-mails), "that effervescent antidote to the otherwise dullness of the whole mundane world."
"Zine" Went the Strings of Our Heart!
Why? Why do people bristle at the sight of a fellow human dripping in the despondent delusion of love, yet go out and pay good money to see the exact same thing in an overpriced piece of Hollywood dreck? Why does love work so well as fantasy, but in reality create such a sticky mess? We don't get it.
Personally, when we see a compadre or compañera in the throes of love, our impulse is to embrace, congratulate, revel in, bloody cheer on, and generally wish well -- unless, of course, we aren't getting any (love, that is). "Celebrate tenacity and stamina -- especially in the face of harrowing odds," we say.
Don't think for one second that dg & Coz at Bad News Bingo don't know from tenacity and stamina -- especially in the Luv Dept. They've been at their particular labor of love for 14 years now. Fourteen! Bad News Bingo is a "zine," for all you non-DIY-types ("Do It Yourself" for all you non-acronomatical-types), and considering the Valentine's Day proximity of the release, appropriately enough, this issue is Number 14/Theme: Love. This Fri, Feb 11, 8pm, Gaby & Mo's will be the place to toast the new Bad News and to celebrate its faithfulness with a Fundraiser. The cover is $3 and that gets you the cover and the rest of the mag, plus an entertaining evening with all sorts of yummy arty types, including word spokers like Thom the World Poet, Stasja, and Scott Wiggerman, and bad ass bands Girl Robots and Sexy Finger Champs. How can you not feel this love? 478-9675 or 457-9027.
Testify to Love, Sun, Feb 13, 9pm, features the Austin Babtist Women at the Rainbow Cattle Company in a variety show that also includes the "illusions" of Scarlett Leigh and Kelly Kline, and more. The Valentine's Eve-event is free; money collected by individual performers will be donated to Project Transitions. 472-5288.
Et tu, Cupid?
Technology: Boon or bane? Depends on your perspective, or more accurately, your implementation. This Tue, Feb 15, 2-5pm the Texas Commission for the Blind sponsors the Hands-On Technology Show at the Criss Cole Rehab Center, 4800 N. Lamar, to showcase the latest in high-tech assistance for folks who are blind or experiencing loss of vision. Hands-on means hands-on; vendors will be on hand to demonstrate and answer questions. 377-0500.
One of the most poignant moments in cinematic history is surely Dr. Evil's imploring of estranged son Scott, "Can I have a hug?" Perhaps not. Either way, we get choked up at that no matter how many times our own little one makes us sit through it. Who could deny such a simple request? A hug. How simple? How elegant! Thus, we are nonplussed by the simple elegance of this brilliant benefit: Lovebed is one man's way of saying, "Hey, world! C'mere, ya big galoot! Gimme a hug, why doncha?" Artist Michael Parkes performs the totally sincere and perfectly timed remedy for Valentine Malaise: a freakin' hug. Parkes will be set up in a huge four-poster bed (we kid u not) in the parking lot at Congress & Fourth, open-armed and ready for love. It's all on the up and up: Parkes will cuddle with anyone who needs it. Supporters of the huggee will be asked for cash donations. Bring your needy friends and plenty o' cash. Proceeds will benefit AIDS Services of Austin (ASA). We are so there. Lovebed200@aol. com or 458-AIDS.