katniss arrow

by Trey Humphreys

Cupid and Katniss Everdeen both shoot arrows. Coincidence? I think not.

Happy Valentine’s Day. Terrible.

A strange thing happened to me this morning. In an ever-long quest to figure out “Love” so that I don’t die a lonely old man in a shanty old folks home staring at a parakeet during the afternoon bingo game, I stumbled upon a new book. The name of the book is Return To Love. Shoot me.

With Valentine’s Day upon us, I thought we should discuss love. As my stomach churns.

Although Love has been a real battle for me, I honestly believe love is the only reason we are here on earth. Literally. To love and be loved. That’s it. Nuff said. #yolo. But seriously. Stomach still hurts.

Now, before you get all FREAKED OUT let me clarify a few notables. First, I do not take heed to any particular religion or philosophy. I am not against organized religion and think much of it does wonderful things. However, I don’t understand how a Pope won’t love someone because they are a homosexual (even though ol’ boy Jesus would have) or how Allah apparently guides people to kill women and children. Baffling. I do think, however, Buddha was a bad ass even though monks have terrible haircuts and wear maroon curtains in airports. Weaselly little fellas.

If you pointed a real gun to my head and asked me about God I would have to say that I believe “God” is “Love” and “Love” is “God”.

That’s it. No Ark with every animal on the planet. No dude named Mohammed ascending to heaven from a rock in Jerusalem. No Tom Cruise and his spreadsheets of Scientology. Maybe snake handling.

For those keeping score, I have battled negative self talk my entire life which is a real bitch. This, in effect, has led me to read every self-help book on the planet. Fresh out of self-help books, I have now switched to spirituality books. And this landed me at Caribou Coffee this morning reading A Return To Love by Marianne Williamson. I removed the cover so people wouldn’t judge me, point or laugh.

Side note: Due to a condition the therapists call “Fear of Abandonment” I have not had a Valentine’s Day date since 2005. Guess that could be a blessing?

This book apparently is based on some woo woo spiritual book called A Course in Miracles. Low and behold, the first three chapters were about love. And God. And Drugs. I was hooked. I also like miracles.

Ol girl who wrote this book, Marianne Williamson, apparently was a bit of a hell raiser back in the day before she found Love and God and peace and happiness by reading A Course in Miracles. I think she was also pretty hot. I was hooked more.

Side note: I was drinking with my good friend Pat one time when she told me, “Love is a battlefield, heartache to heartache we stand”. She was right.

It is funny how “Love” can be the most euphoric feeling in the world and the worst hell imaginable. Falling in love feels like the combination of cocaine, ecstasy, heroin, french fries, a back scratch, 400 count sheets and sneezing all at the same time.

Getting your heart broken feels like drinking a spoiled mayonnaise smoothie made with sardines, back sweat and non-organic sewage while nursing shingles and getting kicked in the nuts by a polar bear, four times in a row. For the most part.

I believe we are all searching for love our entire lives. Love for ourselves, love from others and love for others. Marianne suggests that this is the meaning of life. Pat claims is it war. My therapist is overpaid. That was supposed to be a side note.

So, if you do not have a lover this Valentine’s day like the rest of us with daddy issues (or if you do and he or she sucks), then take heed in some of this banter that Marianne wrote in the book:

  • “Love is what we are born with. Fear is what we learn.”
  • “To experience love in ourselves and others is the meaning of life.”
  • “God is the love within us.”
  • “Love in energy.”
  • “Love in your mind produces love in your life. This is the meaning of Heaven”
  • “Fear in your mind produces fear in your life. This is the meaning of Hell.”

The take away?

First, God is not some white bearded middle age dude in a man-dress living in the clouds. Second, the most important person to love is yourself (so take yourself to a fancy dinner on Valentine’s Day and give yourself a Valentine’s Day card that says I love you). Third, never try to read A Course in Miracles straight through or your brain will catch on fire. Forth, never drink with Pat Benatar.

Good luck out there folks.

Love you, mean it.


Side note: Never read “Fault in Our Stars” on a commercial flight if you are a 40 year old man with a crying disorder.

Side note: There are no more side notes thank God.

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