Monday, 18 August 2014

love in a time of ebola

I came across this song of my youth recently, and realized what a great job Mungo Jerry and friends did of articulating the timeless gender-class minefield: "if her daddy's rich, take her out for a meal, if her daddy's poor, just do what you feel" "if she's rich: if she's nice, bring your friends and we'll all go into town..."

I have reluctantly shared the song with my daughters, as a caution. Pre-AIDS/HIV, and today in the time of Ebola, the impoverished romantic can expect a difficult deal. Matters of love will frequently shade into issues of criminality, whether you are living in a tiny village or a big urban centre, any where in the world.

There are different rules applied, and we cannot help what others see when they look at us.

To a large extent, my twin texts (A Night for the Lady and Halfling spring: an internet romance) engage with these complexities. How do we hold on to, or recover, our appetites as sensual beings, after walking the fiery road of growing to adulthood? How do we acknowledge scars and dangers, and decide to trust again?

Others have been reconsidering the lyrics too.

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