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    Getting Into...Not Falling

            In my past intimate relationships, I always resisted falling too hard. That’s probably a common male phenomenon. Many men look at love as something that happens to them, not something they happen to. I don’t feel that way anymore, but I used to. When a guy believes that something is “happening” to him, there is usually an automatic, primitive response: Fear. Men believe that they are always supposed to be in control. It’s a fucked up mind set, but it is present, to some degree, within the deep recesses of the male mind. It’s evolutionary. It’s primitive. It’s survival based.  And it’s constantly reinforced by society, by culture, by other men, and even sometimes by women. This paradigm has functioned, or disfunctioned, for thousands of years. But it’s an outdated model.     
           When I did fall in love, it felt just like that: falling. I fell yesterday. Off of my bike. It sucked. The best thing I can hope for after a fall is to get my ass up and say “I’m, okay. I’m not dead.” I pull myself up from the pavement, brush off whatever is stuck to me, lick my wounds, and hop back on the bike. There’s usually some short lived euphoria and gratitude that I’m still alive. But that’s it. “I survived” is the best I can do. Ya-Hoo. Why the hell would any man look forward to that?
           What I need is a new phrase. “Falling” In Love just doesn’t work for me. If I can metaphorically compare the greatest experience on earth with taking a spill off of my eighteen speed, then the analogy is tragically flawed.
           How about “Getting Into Love”? That’s much better. Like “getting into”
 a Ferrari. Or “getting into” a great song. Tell me that doesn’t sound better than “falling” off of a ladder.  When I “get into” something, as opposed to “fall” into something, everything is different. First of all, “Getting Into” implies that I have a choice, even if it’s not a completely conscious one. And I believe that as adults, we do choose, consciously and unconsciously, who we love. “Getting Into” is something to relish, to look forward to, to savor, to enjoy. “Falling” is something I try to avoid. And when it starts happening anyway, I usually hurt myself even more by trying to stop it. “Getting Into” is a wonderful, beautiful, spiritual process. When I “Get Into” a piece of music, or a movie, or any work of art (which a woman definitely is), I’m completely enthralled. I show up, as myself, one-hundred percent. That’s a much better experience than wiping out on my bike.
           Guys love to “get into” name it. A band, a car, a new piece of loud machinery, a sport, their lover. A guy who’s “into” something is happy, energized, passionate, attentive, open to the experience, present, content, and himself. Isn’t that the way it’s supposed to be when you’re in love with somebody? Isn’t that what men want to be? Isn’t that what women want their man to be with them?   
           Maybe “falling in love” doesn’t work for woman anymore either. Either way, I’ll stick with “Getting Into Love”. It’s a far more user friendly description of what is essentially a spiritual experience. It's more from the heart, and more in tune with my male psyche. And it doesn’t suggest that I’m taking an unplanned, unwanted free fall into a pool with no water.  
           “Getting Into Love” is similar to anything a guy gets into, but far more intense. Like the best thing you’ve ever dreamed of, amped up even further. Past ten. Past eleven. Think about guitars, cars, drums, motorcycles, football, power tools, boats, and countless other things guys get into. They stay into them for life. And these are only things. The woman a man truly loves is infinitely more beautiful, alluring, fascinating, passionate, sexy, fun, challenging, wonderful, awe-inspiring, sensitive, responsive, and life-affirming than anything else a guy could possibly imagine. With the possible exception of a metallic purple and copper 1967 Corvette convertible with a 427 and a window shattering, 500 watt stereo system. No wait, scratch that. That's just my primitive brain talking. My heart knows the truth. A woman I’m completely in love with is infinitely better than anything I ever dreamed of. Even the ‘Vette.

    © 2008 Clint Piatelli. All Rights (and Wrongs) Reserved

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    Reader Comments (1)

    Dear John -- I'm here! Wallowing in cyberspace like you! Wooo-- that trip out to the geo-stationary satellite and back was a lulu! The earth is pretty from out there. But all that Space and Stars gave me the willies. A certain perspective on my frettings. I love your intro-message, About You. Right now I'm just catching my breath. I set up a blog too. Display Name: Matt Walton, no surprise. I'll read your stuff and get back to you. See you Saturday! --- Matt

    October 15, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMatt Walton

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