This post is dedicated to my husband, without whom I could be neither a PhD nor a mommy. In honor of the seven year anniversary of our office romance, I am posting a piece that I wrote for his amusement when we first started dating. The references are somewhat dated, but I think most of it still applies!
The Love Bug
It can happen to anyone at any time. Once it has, their life will never be the same. Love, also known as love sickness, elation, devotion, desire, or borderline insanity, is a global pandemic spanning throughout human history. The earliest poems about love date back 10 million years when pirates and ninjas ruled the world. Music, literature, and art have all been infected with the love bug. Scientists struggle to understand why.
To this end, scientific research has led to the theory of animal attraction. “A squirrel has to choose another squirrel. If he finds one with a bushy tail and nice whiskers, he has to make a move. He can’t spend a year talking to her about it.” T.S. Eliot. However we define love, it is of the utmost importance to distribute information to the public regarding the dangers of this global affliction.
What causes this malady of affection? Boy meets girl? Girl flirts with boy? Boy meets boy? Girl meets three margaritas and then meets girl? Extensive literature research (or about 20 minutes watching MTV) reveals the key triggers of love sickness.
- Money and/or power
- Cool cars
- Super powers
- Sense of humor
There is no single diagnostic test for being in love. Self proclaimed expert in everything, Dr. Phil, says, “When you known, you know.” Not very helpful if you don’t know if you know. The need for a more reliable diagnostic tool is highlighted by the consequences of the “When you know, you know” approach as applied by President Bush towards the use of WMD’s in Iraq. Early onset symptoms of falling love include:
- Heart palpitations
- Hallucinations (also described as daydreaming)
- Walking into walls
- Diminished attention span doing anything (except daydreaming)
- Hearing music that isn’t there
Due to the similarity of these symptoms with a psychotic break from reality as well as “the perfect buzz,” further research into diagnostics is needed. Anecdotal evidence shows love can also cause dizziness and vomiting when accompanied with alcohol use.
Treatment for the love bug varies with intensity and duration of exposure to the object of affection. Love sickness is most severe when two parties are mutually afflicted resulting in a synergistic neurological toxicity that can last several years or even a lifetime. Treatment options are often only sought for those suffering from the unrequited variety of love sickness, but also may be used by ‘star-crossed’ lovers. Treatment options include:
- Electric shock therapy
- Mega-doses of chocolate
- Boring workplace conversations with office ‘nut jobs’
- Extremely violent movies (or any equivalent ‘mood killers’)
There is currently no organization or governing body responsible for monitoring or studying the incidence or prevalence of cases of love. A growing portion of the community is drawing attention to this critical issue. Unhappy people everywhere are fed up with witnessing the “nauseating canoodling of love-struck teenagers” of all ages. At this point, it is left to the discretion of each person to either encourage or berate those infected, a.k.a. those in love.
Millions of dollars are directly lost each year due to cases of love sickness. The previous statement is based on several minutes of thought and high-minded conjecture. People in love are less productive at work than people not in love, it is assumed. Respected love expert, Leon Phelps, a.k.a. The Ladies Man, has this to say,
“What is love? What is this longing in our hearts for togetherness? Is it not the sweetest flower? Does not this flower of love have the fragrant aroma of fine, fine diamonds? Does not the wind love the dirt? Is not love not unlike the unlikely not it is unlikened to?”
What else can one say, really?
The work place is often a breeding ground for love based afflictions. Seemingly innocent glances, pats on the back, and slightly inappropriate humor can trigger the most intense love affairs in the history of the world…ever. Identifying incidents of true workplace love are difficult as these affairs generally remain covert, overwhelming, totally thrilling…I mean…ahem…that is…uuhhhh…wait, what was I saying? Ah, yes. From the strictly professional perspective of occupational hazards…ensuing office gossip can be far more dangerous to lovers than the love sickness itself.
– The end. –
What unconventional ways have you found to express your love to your person?