Happy Hallmark Holiday, one and all

Hey, man, I know St. Valentine was martyred, and that is a bummer, particularly for those who believe in the saints, but what possible relationship does that unhappy event have to what goes on nowadays?? NOTHIN', that's what.

No candy, no flowers, no doofy lacy poems accompanied the original event, I'm reasonably certain. Hm.... Might actually bear some research, to see where the original tragedy morphed into the travesty it is today.

Don't get me wrong; as you know if you've read this tome or know me in person, I adore my husband and lavish affection and maulings and big smoochy kisses on him every day, many times a day, and hope and plan to always do so, as I've happily done since 1992. But I resent the hell out of some stupid holiday that tells me I'm supposed to, or that he's supposed to, or that we should send cards or flowers or go out to dinner, yadda yadda yadda. Lookit: you're supposed to do all that stuff spontaneously in a marriage, or a relationship, or hell, even a friendship, inspired or moved by LOVE itself, not by any sense of obligation or faux observance or anything else. Do that.

Love each other. Love yourself, first, then move on to others. And, as I've said before and will no doubt say again, because I believe in it more than anything else in the world, tell 'em. Life is precious, and short, and people wander around sad a lot of the time, for various reasons, and I have this nutty theory that we can each make the world a better place, in teensy increments, by letting the people we think are great know that we think they're great. Tell someone, every day, something you like or love about them. I guarantee that you'll be happier, they'll be happier, and if there's anything to ripple theory, it will extend out and out and out. Peace and love to you.

(Ok, I did send some cards and just one present; but it was because I just was moved to do so: I sent a bonsai with a snippet from Coleridge on the card. "Flowers are lovely; Love is flower-like. Friendship is a sheltering tree." Now let's hope Minnie doesn't eat the tree in question.)

But love me for love's sake, that evermore
Thou mayst love on, through love's eternity.


Little Ben

When we were in London in the fall, Eli made a joke that will haunt him as long as he's friends with the trial team: while running past Westminster with Josh and Curt, he looked at the clock tower and said, "Hey, is that Big Ben?" Naturally, Curt gave him the sarcastic reply "No, that's Little Ben; there's a much bigger one they keep further down the river" (or something like that -- I was probably sleeping when all this took place, mind you). Anyway, of course it became a biiiiiig joke, and I found this very cool antique photo that I had mounted and framed for Eli for his birthday, but when I went back to London, I took a bus tour and snapped this pic, which I like so much that a) I had it made into notecards and b) I wanted to post it here, now that I'm learning how to add photos.

"Little Ben," as seen from a moving tourbus on a frigid December afternoon. Posted by Hello