Carnes: Quarter century later, little changes |

Carnes: Quarter century later, little changes

Roses are red
Happy Valley is white,
With her by my side
Life’s such a delight.

Over the top sappy, sure, but of all the human emotions we fail to understand, love is at the top of the list.
Hate, jealousy, sympathy, empathy, fear, revenge, joy, sorrow, greed, anxiety and so on are there, too, but the personal priority of each is as varied as local opinions on Booth Heights, electric vehicles and snowboarders versus skiers.

Love comes in various styles and levels. I loved our dog, but different in the way I love my children, which is different from the way I love my wife, my mother-in-law, skiing, and a cold beer on a hot day.

Romantic love is the style most distinctly on most of our minds today, hence my desire to remind any of you boneheads out there (obviously only covering one gender base) that you better do something (spend a few bucks) before lunchtime or be prepared to suffer the frigid consequences (outside temperature being irrelevant, if you catch my drift).

Romance varies as well, as there is a vast difference between the crush of a 12-year-old boy toward the cute girl he passes in the hall each day and the hand-holding tenderness of a 94-year-old couple celebrating 75 years of marital bliss.

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But there is a certain sweetness and innocence to both.

In between, we have 20-somethings that copulate more often than snow melts in May and 60-somethings who only think about “melting snow” as often as paying their property tax.

Same goes for elected political leaders grabbing little kittens, hitting on teenage girls and using cigars for purposes the makers never envisioned (covering both political bases).

But to each their own, as they say, so although admitting to not possessing the romantic musings of a Henry Cavill or Harry Styles (covering both handsome bases, I think), I have been able to hold my own from time to time with my bride.

For the past 25-plus years, her presence in my life has provided me with all the justification a man could ever need to internally, and consistently, redefine the true meaning of love.

I adored her from the very first time we met at the old Paddy O’Day’s. It was a Sunday, and although the connection didn’t blossom for a few years, it eventually came full circle.

While we don’t hold hands as frequently or show much affection in public, when the urge strikes one, the other responds in kind (usually, unless I’ve done something exceptionally stupid). 

We don’t exactly worship one another, yet from time to time will catch each other’s eye across the room during a function, and smile.

We have our issues — any couple that says they don’t is lying either to you or themselves. It’s how we handle those issues that separate a good marriage from one in need of constant repair, and are more devoted to each other now than either of us could have imagined over two and a half decades ago.

Although true love is not what makes the world go around (gravity does the trick), it does make the bad times a little easier to manage and the good times even more special. 

So even though a few of you have your fingers stuck down your throat while reading this, I sincerely hope the same for you as well not only Valentine’s Day, but every day.

And don’t forget, scientists have established that the brain of the average woman is larger than the brain of the average man, and as the women are so fond of saying, “Size doesn’t matter.”

Richard Carnes, of Avon, writes weekly. He can be reached at

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