The Curmudgeon


Friday, April 01, 2005

Lurve, Lurve, Lurve

Lurve - which is more accurately rendered LURVE, but there are headaches enough in the world - was invented in the United States as one of the standard excuses for exerting power over people. Other such excuses include Freedom, Democracy, the American Dream and National Security, but all these are underpinned by, and in some ways are offshoots of, Lurve.

Lurve is embodied in the smiles of evangelists and politicians, where the blinding gleam of teeth eclipses the glitter of slitted little eye. The language of Lurve is advertising; the poetry of Lurve is sermonising; the embrace of Lurve is a sweaty, sleepless, droning and deafening dedication to Duty. A society ruled by Lurve is a lynch mob with a sanctimonious streak: "We could string you up right now and God would smile upon us, but our duty is to be merciful. Go not upon your way, for then you will sin again; join with us in Lurve, and we will keep you pure."

Lurve is a textbook example of erroneous naming. The resemblance of the word to love is not accidental, but at the same time it is about as accurate as flying fox for fruit bat, slow-worm for legless lizard, or united kingdom for the United Kingdom. Love is an emotional response to a human being; Lurve is a fanatical sense of obligation towards an abstract. Love is irrational, ludicrous, unthinking, distracting, humiliating and usually poisonous; Lurve too is all these, but less fun. Love can occur between two people or fewer; Lurve requires a crowd. Lurve conquers all.

Lurve is the sacrifice of the self on the altar of "doing good", where Good is an eternal graven image, unassailable and unchanging. The "good" that is done for Lurve need be of no benefit to anyone, and certainly it need take no account of choice on the part of the recipient. For maximum efficacy and goodness, indeed, the offerings of Lurve should cause discomfort or actual pain, in order that the admixture of Duty, which is an essential of Lurve, be not forgotten.

Lurve is the offspring of Puritan Christianity, fathered on the flower children of the sixties via the sweet-talk of psychobabble and the dildo of junior Republicanism. Lurve is the province of gospel-huckstering fellatio fiends and southern-fried tub-thumpers; Lurve is the blood and bones of soap opera; Lurve is the Viagra engorging the emotional pornography of chat shows where Real People discuss their Real Problems, abasing themselves before millions to gain the absolution of the mob. Lurve is a sounding gong and a clashing cymbal; so long as we have not Lurve, we speak with tongues of men or angels.


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