The Big Chill


Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love. (Revelation 2:4)

Yeah. It always starts out on fire. Everything’s peachy keen. All’s well with the world. But the inevitable chill inevitably sets in. You wonder what the big deal was in the first place. You switch out the terms of endearment and the whole thing becomes a matter of personal integrity. The first experience is remembered with a nostalgic embarrassment, maybe even a slight guilt, but it is not something you honestly want anymore. That was then; this is now.

The venerable progression looks something like this (with a little help from some friends):

Love is a many splendored thing. —Four Aces

Love is blind. —Shakespeare

Love bites. —Def Leppard

Love hurts. —Nazareth

Love stinks. —J. Geils Band

What’s love got to do with it? —Tina Turner

50 Ways To Leave Your Lover —Paul Simon

Sure, passion’s alright in it’s place, especially in matters of religion. Nobody’s going to begrudge you your weekly tryst with God. But that kind of thing has a very limited shelf-life. Better to expunge the extraneous emotional baggage, to reduce the unreliable fits of passion to manageable (and respectable) principles. If it can’t be written down, trash it. It’s best that way. No fanaticism. No existential vagaries. No disappointments. Better to aim for Aristotle’s Golden Mean: avoid extremes and seek moderation in all things. A balanced life, that’s it. So what if you forfeit a few fleeting, giddy moments. What you gain is stability and sustainability in a world decidedly out of control. Passion is so damn wasteful; besides, it only gets you into trouble.

Iceman, baby. Be da Iceman.


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