Love takes a variety of different roads
Like Hollywood baby boomers to Botox, I’m attracted to any novel Oprah chooses for her book club.Call me easy to please, gullible, a slave to all that is “O,” whatever. But I really think Oprah picks them well. My objective-turned-cynical jury is still out on the James Frey “A Million Little Pieces” selection, though. He does have a way with words.Maybe I should write a fantastic memoir about my truth-stretched, romanticized love life. I will call it “A Trillion Lucky Pieces of …” and it will blow “Sex and the City” out of the Pepto-Bismol-hued, chick-lit water.Take that, Carrie Bradshaw, Candace Bushnell. Whichever.I’m about halfway through one of Oprah’s recent picks, “Love in the Time of Cholera,” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I am reading it because of a triple threat I can’t resist:Oprah picked it for her book club, it won a Nobel Prize, and a major motion picture was made based on the novel.
Yes, I am a media whore. And I don’t care who knows it.Before I see the movie, I must finish the book. Like making sure all the hangers in my closet are white, it’s one of those weird, compulsive things I do to maintain order in my life.I’d blame my parents, but they paid for my college.This book is as hard to put down as the family dog. I am a sucker for a good love story. Emily Bronte’s “Wuthering Heights” is one of my favorite classic romances. Probably because I read the book first, then saw the film later. …In “Love in the Time of Cholera” – which I’m not spoiling here because this is all printed on the back cover – Florentino Ariza and Fermina Daza fall in love as teenagers. But she ditches him to marry a high-class doctor. Florentino is devastated, so much so he copes by bedding 622 ladies throughout his adult life.Nothing mends a broken heart better than sex with 600 random partners. Florentino and Fermina meet up again at the doc’s funeral after 51 years, nine months and four days. Someone has been counting the days. Or stalking.
A fine line, really.This is all so heartbreaking because when Fermina and the doc get hitched, they’re not exactly in love. He’s a doctor, people are dying of cholera, she lacks a pedigree, and the love of her life doesn’t meet her father’s approval. Did I mention people are dying of cholera?Her choice seems logical, I guess. Couples didn’t always marry for love back then. But is it? I’ve never been one to choose a man by how much money he’s worth. I can’t imagine compromising love for money. Maybe I should start. I’m a hopeless romantic, convinced that someday I’ll have the doting husband, 2.5 kids and environmentally friendly family wagon parked in the driveway of my beautiful mountain home.I’m probably more likely to publish that fabricated memoir.Since I’m only about halfway through the book, I have yet to find out how it all plays out, how Fermina feels about losing 50 years with her true love.The thought kind of bums me out, really.
Fast forward to the year 2059.There’s a good chance I’ll be waiting 51 years, nine months and four days for my magic moment. If my math’s correct, that will make me 86 years, five months and one day old. If this mystery lover from my past does return, he better understand the aging process.Or at least sag in equally embarrassing places.Maybe plastic surgery will be so advanced in 50 years my skin will be preserved in time like a museum exhibit. There’s always hair dye. And if my sarcasm is halfway appreciated by any of my exes, I’ll really be a hoot by the time I’m 86.Especially if I write that memoir. April E. Clark wonders what life will be like in 2059. She hopes there’ll still be snow in the Rocky Mountains for skiing. She can be reached at aprilelizabethclark@ yahoo.com.
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