Denver Bar Association
February 2000
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Love: Give and Get it While You Can

Miss Management


Editor's Note: Due to complaints about The Docket's frequent coverage of the rich and famous, it has been determined that there is a need for equal time. Therefore, this column is dedicated to the poor and obscure, solo and small firm practitioners, attorneys who are parents of small children, and everyone at Legal Aid. (Miss Management is the nom de plume of a Denver Attorney who is or has been most of the above.)

In honor of Valentine’s Day, Miss M has been assigned to write about Love. This is making her grumpy, because she really wanted to write about Mars—namely, who (or what?) is sabotaging every probe, lander or orbiter that anyone on Earth has tried to send to Mars for the last five years, and why? Alas, this fascinating topic will have to wait, while Miss Management shatters your illusions of love and tells you what you really need to know.

  1. ' is the timid, half-hearted, stingy lover who starves his beloved until she leaves him in disgust.'
    Love is an active verb. It is not a thing you can take, steal, hoard, trade or sell. You can’t buy it, you can’t fake it and you can’t have it until you deserve it. Love is something you DO. You can talk about it, sing about it or write poetry about it, but it ain’t Love until you give it away.

  2. Love is the universal democrat. It is not reserved for the bold and beautiful, or the young and the restless, or the lucky and the strong. It doesn’t care what you drive, what perfume you wear, what mutual funds you invest in, or what country club you join. You can’t look it up on the Internet, define it with a checklist, or base it on some statistical probability of compatibility. You have to go where love takes you and be glad of the invitation to travel.

  3. Loving is the greatest nonmaterial necessity of life. The reason you have to give it away is because loving makes you fully human; without it, you are a lesser thing. Dante said it best in "The Inferno, Canto III," when he described the bleak inhabitants of the antechamber of Hell that is set aside for those too passionless to love and too cowardly to care: "These wretched ones, who were never alive . . . the heavens, that their Beauty be not lessened, have cast them out; nor will deep Hell receive them, for even the wicked cannot glory in them."

  4. Love is infinite. You can freely give it away, because it is an infinitely renewable resource. Feel free to love extravagantly, for there will never be a day when you cannot give love, and there will never be an instant when someone does not need it. Love will never diminish you; it is the timid, half-hearted, stingy lover who starves his beloved until she leaves him in disgust.

  5. Love is the ultimate goodness. It is not lust, nor need, nor domination, nor an escape from loneliness and despair. It is not a mutual collusion in romantic delusion. Real love is patient and kind, unselfish and forgiving. It never leads you into pettiness or evil, but rejoices in the good, the true and the beautiful. It believes all things, hopes all things and endures all things (and the fact that this has largely been plagiarized from St. Paul (I Corinthians 13) just provides the immutability of love over the Millennia).

  6. Love Now. Next week you may be dead. Love your mother, your daughter, your son, your spouse, your neighbor, your great grandmother or even your great grandmother’s cat. You can either do it now, or sit around and watch your soul shrivel up into a warty little prune. Ugh!

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