Gardner believed in love. She had little faith in her ability as an actress or a star; at each casting, it was said that she always thought they had the wrong girl. She could love well, however, no matter how formidable the object of her affection. Yet as each of her men worked his way through her heart, he also wore her down a little bit, until like Lady Brett Ashley, Gardner learned to cover her old wounds and aching heart with a sort of brash independence that held men at bay. Love in the abstract or the past tense became her ideal.
--Cary Randolph Fuller, for RL Magazine’s “A Heroine for Hemingway”
“what do any of us really know about love?”
“…It seems to me we’re just beginners at love. We say we love each other and we do, I don’t doubt it. I love Terri and Terri loves me, and you guys love each other too. You know the kind of love I’m talking about now. Physical love, that impulse that drives you to someone special, as well as love of the other person’s being, his or her essence, as it were. Carnal love and, well, call it sentimental love, the day-to-day caring about the other person. But sometimes I have a hard time accounting for the fact that I must have loved my first wife too. But I did, I know I did. There was a time when I thought I loved my first wife more than life itself. But now I hate her guts. I do. How do you explain that? What happened to that love? I wish someone could tell me. Then there’s Ed. Okay, we’re back to Ed. He loves Terri so much he tries to kill her and he winds up killing herself.
You guys have been together eighteen months and you love each other. It shows all over you. You glow with it. But you both loved other people before you met each other. You’ve both been married before, just like us. And you probably loved other people before that too, even. And the terrible thing, the terrible thing is, but the good thing too, the saving grace, you might say, is that if something happened to one of us—excuse me for saying this—but if something happened to one of us tomorrow, I think the other one, the other person, would grieve for a while, you know, but then the surviving party would go out and love again, have someone else soon enough. All this, all of this love we’re talking about, it would just be a memory. Am I wrong? Am I way off base? Because I want you to set me straight if you think I’m wrong. I want to know. I mean, I don’t know anything, and I’m the first one to admit it.”
Editor's Column: I most definitely, 110 percent, believe in love...
My problem, though, is that I take all of these glamorized images of love and I adopt them as my own standards for relationships. Yes, I realize that I have probably been setting myself up for failure for the past 10 years, but I guess my heart is too strong and my mind is too weak to provide any resistance. I want the football player to run off the field and spin me around in his arms. I want a guy to surprise me with a date that he planned all by himself. I want the guy who turns back around and decides he doesn’t want to leave just yet. I want to be serenaded in song or even just a few nice words on a card. Most people would probably say that I am just waiting for the perfect guy to walk up to my doorstep and that I can’t have these kinds of expectations, but I do know that in reality, they can be realized – just not frequently.
—Brooke Schneider for The Heights