Posted tagged ‘Andy Bellefleur’

Heart In A Box – A Simple Proposal

February 13, 2010

Heart In Box (by Jason Martin)

The photo above is a bit unusual at Valentine’s.  Typically there are boxes in the shape of hearts rather than hearts in plain old boxes.

Looking at the picture made me think about hearts that are out of the box. And that (wierdly enough) brought up the trend towards increasingly elaborate proposals of marriage.   (By elaborately planned proposals, I do not mean the scheme of Andy Bellefleur in one of the Sookie Stackhouse novels in which he enlists Sookie’s help in putting an engagement ring in a basket of fried chicken fingers.  Yes, they were greasy.)

I refer to the proposals that are the work of an entire business, a special “events team”.

I tend towards the spartan, but the marriage proposal business seems crazily excessive to me,  the commercialization of the personal,  the overwhelming of the heartfelt with artifice, the exchange of the truly grand for the grandiose.

I understand that people want to try to ensure the perfect moment, the perfect memory.  Perhaps they also hope that the perfect proposal will ensure the perfect marriage.  But, as two famous sages, Gautama Buddha and Mick Jagger, separately said, “You can’t always get what you want.”

Okay, okay, Buddha’s saying was more along the lines that ‘desire is the root of all suffering’, which is somewhat broader than Jagger’s pronouncement.  Buddha’s truth, after all, encompasses the idea that even if you do get what you want (such as the perfect marriage proposal), it will not ensure happiness.  (Desire and desire and desire leads to desire and desire and desire.)

Jagger’s saying, in my teenage mind, was always followed with”mumble mumble mumble…YOU GET WHAT YOU NEED,” as if basic satisfaction was a bit on the automatic, if shouted, side.

But today, when I really thought about the lyrics, and actually looked them up, I saw that they were more complex:

“You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you just might find

You get what you need.”

What does the “trying” here mean?  Or for that matter getting what you need?  Trying to get enough so that you might not get off, but at least you won’t go into withdrawal?

Maybe.  But my semi-Lutheran, semi-Buddhist, admirer-of- Mick-Jagger, self prefers to think of it as trying to find acceptance of what you already have,  trying to discover that, at least occasionally, you have enough in what is available.

Which brings me back to the heart in the box.    Creativity, memorability, glow, glimmer, really do not require so very much:  tin foil, a  discarded box, a hole cut in some white paper, a very small battery, a teeny light, darkness.

Heart In A Box (Jason Martin)