Tuesday, August 4, 2009


"I once was stupid enough to say, in a previous relationship, 'I'm going to be with this person forever,' and realized, as I grew, that I don't know if forever is possible." -- the twice-divorced Halle Berry (above, with her insanely gorgeous model BFNNF -- boyfriend not necessarily forever -- Gabriel Aubry), explaining why she'll never marry again

Years ago, about nine to be exact, in the summer of 1990, I fell hard for Paolo, a beautiful guy from Italy who was visiting New York City. I ended up going to visit him in Milan that fall, and I fell even harder. (I still suffer from recurring back pain from the force with which I hit the floor.) One night Paolo and I were talking about love and life, and told me something that caused my heart to sink a few inches. He said that he doesn't believe in forever love; we all just have to enjoy what we have in the here and now.

I felt as if someone had punched me in the gut. It wasn't the first time I'd heard someone pooh pooh the notion of everlasting love. Years earlier, during an interview for People magazine, the soul singer Barry White said pretty much the same thing when we were discussing a track on his comeback CD, The Icon Is Love, called "Whatever We Had, We Had." Although it was a bit shocking to hear such romantic cynicism from an icon of love like Barry White, it was much easier to take when he said it. In fact, I agreed with his assertion that there are far fewer failed relationships if you look at them in terms of the time you were in them, enjoying them, as opposed to focusing on the fact that they ended. But with Paolo, as I was so busy building houses with white picket fences in my head, when he said it, I felt an acute pang of disappointment.

I've since come around to his way of thinking. Maybe it's too many bitter breakups. Or maybe it's seeing all the compromises that couples I know make in order to stay together. It's not that I don't believe in compromise. It's just that so many things that I consider to be deal breakers, other people see as minor bumps in the road, or simply part of a smooth ride.

Last night I was listening to the song "Can't Say It Like I Mean It" from Alison Moyet's spectacular 2008 CD, The Turn, and several lines in particular knocked me out.

"Some people only see you
As a move they're making
Another step they're taking
A bet they're staking
There are people who you think
You're gonna love forever
You're gonna stay together
You should know better"

I couldn't have said it better myself. Now check out Alison (below) singing it like she really means it.

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