Bad news bears

The news has seemed unrelentingly grim lately. I don't know if it's because I'm back in the land of real NPR so I'm getting more thorough coverage, or if more bad things are actually happening, but with the oil spill, and the flotilla raid, and all that unconstitutional bull sh*t in Arizona, and the general economic and political mess we find ourselves in, I'm having a hard time finding the silver lining. And then today, the news of Al and Tipper splitting up. It could have been just a piece of gossip, a sad story of yet another celebrity couple who couldn't hack it, but it seems bigger somehow. Because it's not the divorce of just any celebrity couple; we're talking about high school sweethearts who just celebrated their 40th anniversary, a couple who spoke of each other with great affection any time they were interviewed and showed that affection (sometimes a little TOO much) easily and often.

It feels silly to care about people I don't even know, akin to ogling movie stars in US Weekly (Stars: they're just like us! They get divorced, too!) But there are days when I have trouble believing that marriages can be happy and healthy and last forever. The whole concept seems somewhat far-fetched, really, especially in our business, where it sometimes seems that every marriage is doomed either to end or to be riddled with infidelity.

The thing is, I'm an optimist, or a romantic, or something along those lines. Despite all evidence to the contrary, including my own experience, I still believe in marriage, in the forever kind of love. I believe it exists. And I don't have to look far to find evidence that I'm right: I have it in the 36-year marriage (and still going strong) of my own parents. One time I asked my mom how they did it, what was their secret, and she told me that in their entire marriage she had never had even a thought of leaving, not once. Doesn't that just take your breath away? It's something to strive for, and even more than that, I derive great strength from it.

Which isn't to say that I'm not still sad about the Gores—I am. But I'm able to step down from the ledge and realize that it's one sad story, not a sign that all marriages are doomed, or, you know, the impending apocalypse. And I also think of something Dan Savage once said on his podcast, something I hold very dearly and think of often, which is essentially (and I'm paraphrasing here) that a relationship is not a failure just because it ends.

But friends? If you've got some good news, send it my way, won't you? I think we all could use some.


  1. Here is something uplifting: I have been studying hotel accommodations in Santa Fe all afternoon on a high-speed internet connection that is as slow as molasses in January. What's it going to be; the Santa Fe Sage Inn for $133, Adobe B&B for $135 [nice!], Santa Fe Suites for $77.95 [smoking rooms only], or the Super 8 for $54 [incl. taxes]?

    Or is this going to be another armchair trip, considering the projected $500-600 for gas [if the prices stay as they are now]?

    Anyway, it was fun, and I hope it will cheer you up! It's also raining here, if that helps. :-)

  2. You might find this uplifting.

    All sorts of happy (and fun!) news...

  3. Try this book on marriage:

    I'm optimistic!

  4. rosejean goddardJune 2, 2010 at 7:39 PM

    Last night on PBS I enjoyed "A Life in Seven Arias" about Pavarotti.. I was so transported (again) by his love of life, his joyful expression, his amazing sound. I'm suddenly an opera lover again, and I can leave the daily news pgms. How wonderful that you and CM are involved daily with beautiful music. The best escape ever developed!
    Bravi! Grandma Bossy


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