Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentine is the patron saint of epilepsy

Charles Dickens wanted a woman with oomph on his arm, but his wife Catherine was reserved and rather a homebody. You might excuse her considering she had 10 children. One would have hoped Charles could have set her up and parted amicably so he could court Ellen Terry, the young actress; instead he belittled and exiled Catherine, and blamed her for so much birthing. Though history points to the contrary, I like to think she was relieved to be rid of him.

Abraham Lincoln remained loyal to Mary, although she was less competent than Catherine Dickens and as dowdy. And Hilary Clinton remains loyal to Bill, despite his womanizing. There’s more to love than sex, the saints say. 

The less you know about people’s relationships, the better the relationships seem. Anyone care for more Sylvia & Ted?

“We’ve Only Just Begun,” the Carpenters’ song played at millions of weddings including my aunt’s (later legally terminated), was originally written for a bank commercial. Karen Carpenter, coincidentally, died the day her divorce went through. 

John Keats might have happily wedded Fanny Brawne if he hadn’t wasted away from TB. Fanny’s own brother also died of TB a few years later. TB is an ardent suitor. Which reminds me to read The Magic Mountain

Fernando Pessoa seems to have never loved anyone at all, on purpose. 

Erik Satie, too, made a clean break. His one love affair, with Suzanne Valadon, left him heartbroken, and Satie abandoned romance. He died of cirrhosis, and the posthumous excavation of his lodgings revealed excrement on the living room floor. Perhaps he didn’t want to venture too far from the piano? Which remained true to him?


Taidgh Lynch said...

I thought I'd say hello and thank you for the great post. Happy Valentine's!

Kathleen said...

I am soon to read The Book of Disquiet, which sits quietly on my desk at the moment. My son wants to read it, based on its cool cover.

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