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17 March 2011

What is Love?

From Love, etc. by Julian Barnes.

Stuart     First love is the only love.

Oliver    As much love as possible is the only love.

Gillian    True love is the only love.

Stuart     I don't mean you can't love again.  Some people can, even if some people can't.  But whether you can or can't, first love can never be repeated.  And whether you can or can't, first love never lets you go.  Second love lets you go.  First, never.

Oliver    Misprise me not.  'Twas not the catechism of Casanova, the justification of Giovanni.  Sexual Stakhanovism is for those with no imagination.  I meant, if anything, the contrary.  We need as much love as possible because there is so little of it to go round, don't you find?

Gillian    True love is solid love, day-to-day love, reliable love, love that never lets you down.  You think that sounds boring?  I don't.  I think it sounds deeply romantic.

Stuart     P.S.  By the way, and incidentally, who ever said that love makes us better people, or makes us behave better?  Who ever said that?

Stuart     P.P.S.  I'd like to make another point because nobody else has done so.  Someone said that being in love makes you liable to fall in love.  I'd just like to say:  not half as much as not being in love does.

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