Home | Stories | Missdream | Order | Contact Us




Lest one get the wrong impression of Albert's, it must be said that the place had an aesthetic appeal and even a beauty all its own. In fact, many of its patrons had done their part to help decorate the restaurant. The walls, if not festooned, were certainly covered with paintings and pictures of the numerous people who had been a part of Albert's over the years. It was not a gallery by any means, but Albert usually permitted the clientele to display their art work. Some of the pieces were intended to honor Albert's: a neo-impressionistic rendering of Albert himself; photos from around the world taken of a customer wearing the Albert's T-shirt; and a highly characterized depiction of something off the menu. Foremost of them all, however, was the mural painting that graced the entire outside wall above the entrance. It was one of Greg's creations, born through a fit of inspiration and crafted over several weeks of unrestrained expression.

Greg had traveled to Alaska one summer several years before, and, while he worked on a fishing boat, he immersed himself in the natural wonders and heavenly vistas that seemed to surround his very soul. He used his spare moments to paint the manifestations of energy that bedazzled his spirit and altered his inner consciousness. When he returned that fall, nothing was the same for him.

Organized society possessed no meaning for Greg, and his defiance of the conventional routine of everyday life sprung from the metaphysical catharsis that he had experienced in the North. The mural was a vivid expression of the brazen but endearing energy that roared inside of him. He was the tranquil yet passionate artist-warrior whose love of life, despite its multitude of imperfections, was vibrantly and unmistakably conveyed in the conciliatory and joyful element found in his work. Greg yearned for a comprehensive spiritual awakening and acquiescence amidst the economic din and cacophonous conflict of society. His talent, which he attributed to an ethereal inspiration, displayed an anguished sensitivity as well as an unrelenting intensity.

Greg did not strive for some aura of self-aggrandizing mysticism achieved through supposed esoteric means. His quest, rather, was a heartfelt and purposeful attempt to fathom his destiny through an unrestrained participation in the adventures of life. More than an ideological pursuit, Greg's calling was his search for the divine, and he longed to experience it on the mortal plane. His art, studies, and philosophical ramblings were the elemental fabric of his mission. As much as he shared of himself within the eclectic and intellectual incubator which was Albert's, invariably his attention and passion drifted quickly beyond the confines of its four walls. His presence amongst the others, then, was a reflection of their friendship, and a periodic sojourn through their communal energies. And so it was in Albert's that Greg joined the others for another round of discussion.

"Emotion has got to be the most elusive element of our lives," stated Matt. "When I think about emotion in general, I often like to examine its similarities with belief. Both defy logic and reason, and neither need contextual support from reality to attain their existence. They possess an immense and inscrutable power which, at times, captivates and enraptures all of us. All too frequently, their meaning is lost or hidden in layers of imagination and spiritual conundrums. In the end, I think it is safe to say that both emotion and belief are so highly subjective that, within their realm, purpose and experience cannot be completely conveyed. Yet given that comparison as a basic foundation, I'd like to focus my attention on love which simultaneously exists as an emotion and a type of belief."

"We must believe in love in order to experience it, yet, quite possibly, none of us really understand or trust fully in this emotion. It's relatively easy to convince ourselves that love will energize our minds and spirits with a seemingly limitless power. We augment this perspective by supposing that love is vital to everyone; that it is, in fact, a life-sustaining force. And the intensity is increased by the addictive cravings that we develop once we surmise that love is indispensable."

"What a vicarious and narcissistic rush it is, that thrills us, when we think that we recognize something in another person to which we believe we can relate intimately. It's never just a carnal urge or momentary appreciation of beauty that ennobles us. Rather, it's an instinctive signal that causes us to conclude that we've encountered someone who will have a significant impact in our lives."

"Suddenly everything seems to come into focus, and we experience a certain timeless sensation during which we fixate on another person. Their essence seems to overpower us, and every detail of their physicality is accentuated with a vividness which intoxicates us. We are overwhelmed by their presence and convinced that we must commune with their spirit. A certain bodily magnetism touches and rivets us, heightening our amorous desires. We are energized by a singleness of purpose and motivated to levels of previously unknown creativity, vigor, and passion that emerge from inside of us and seem to possess an eternal quality."

"However, soon we become preoccupied, and sometimes obsessed, with the need for external recognition; we strive to confirm the existence of a certain equilibrium of energy and emotion through which we will be able to obtain the love that we so desperately want to experience. We precariously enter a realm of vulnerability in which our sense of self-worth and our interpretation of meaning become partially or comprehensively dependent on the assessment of the person who is rapidly becoming the personification of our ideal and romantic perceptions. We risk dismissing, or completely suppressing, our own ability to subjectively evaluate ourselves in order to receive what we are convinced would be an ultimate declaration of value and justification."

"It's when we first experience an affirmation or rejection that we begin our foray into a state of confused and warped perspectives. Our reactions manifest themselves along a seemingly endless spectrum: we perceive and accept a diminished notion of ourselves; we redouble our efforts, optimistically believing that a positive outcome is in reach; we bask in the glory of an exaggerated amplification of our habitual traits; or perhaps we develop an urgent and limitless need for further interaction and reciprocation. Regardless of the content of our emotional state, gradually a symbiosis between love and belief is constructed in our minds which affects nearly every subsequent action and thought."

"Our perception of our environment becomes poignantly symbolic and ubiquitously romantic as we focus both our conscious thought and subconscious energy on a deepening of the experience of love. The external and omnipresent sources of artistic as well as commercialized expressions of romance bring context and flavor to the emotional sphere in which we've placed ourselves. We struggle to retain a division between our own sensual feelings, and the contrived romantic offerings that pervade our culture."

"A fundamental yet profound connection takes shape within us between our reservoirs of emotion and veracity, resulting in a correlative and inversely proportional presumption of destiny: the greater the perceived need for love, the more fervent the belief in love. Subsequently, our belief creates an all-inclusive and illusory set of assumptions about the human need for love. Yet as with all modes of belief, the multitude and varied realities that we experience reveal the frailties of a misguided imagination and unrestrained emotion."

"We see that our belief is contextual; versatile in its ability to mutate and adapt to a wide range of situations. We become caught between transformations from one positive extreme to its opposite negative catastrophe, impairing our ability to discern and judge, and obscuring our internal foundation of values. In the end, if we can reemerge from our self-constructed state of emotional irrationality, we can only conclude that love is like all other qualities of life in that it is selective and selected, not universally obligatory and vital. Perhaps, too, there are limits to the extent and capability that each of us possesses to experience love, and, in this way, we engage ourselves in an uncontrollable and inequitable morass of emotional turmoil."

"While I won't contest your assertion that love is not a universal need," replied Tim, "I will maintain that it is uniformly elemental as part of the human experience. Even the act of rejecting or scorning love is an inclusive reaction to its existence. Yet perhaps the level of individual awareness determines the extent of need. In other words, some people are cognizant of their need and act based on that recognition, and other people never understand nor discover either the subjective or objective influence of love."

"For many, survival and its essential elements such as food, shelter, and clothing are the focus of all their energy. In such a case where mortality is always under severe pressure, the emotion of love can be neglected and undernourished. Desperate circumstances like these may not alleviate or eliminate the necessity, but quite possibly they subsume and overwhelm the pursuit of love."

"Others become separated from love because of painful or traumatic experiences. Often, as a result, they are never able to rehabilitate themselves or reestablish harmony with that emotion. When negativity and psychological damage become the parameters of the perception of love, the entire behavioral substructure is destabilized and perhaps even poisoned. Such circumstances can be overcome, though, because there is not one standard for love; the emotion is entirely subjective in essence. Generally speaking, then, our environment shapes many of our needs and tendencies, but our internal spiritual configuration obviously plays a prevalent role in affecting our emotional status."

"For many of us, the family exists as the realm within which we impartially receive and instinctively seek love. In most cases, this initial encounter with emotion is something that we cannot critically judge or decipher at first, but it can determine both the nature and related elements of our sequential as well as overall emotional future. Usually we are captivated and acquiesce to whatever emotional energy is directed towards us. Gradually we establish a standard by which we are able to delineate the many kinds of love that occur within our lives. For those fortunate ones amongst us, the primary love that we experience in our families is both positive and supportive. For others who suffer through emotional hardships or abusive situations, future interaction with people can be hindered if not sabotaged. When our needs are not fulfilled within the family, we often look elsewhere, and this insufficiency of familial love can become a long-term negative."

"Love is intrinsically negative and inevitably injurious," Nick stated as the discussion shifted his way. "The emotional vicissitudes that we experience through love are similar to the fantastic highs and cataclysmic lows that are brought on by drugs - none have a functional or justifiable place in conventional reality."

"Yet the most pernicious and futile aspect of love is the concept that humans attempt to relate through vulnerability; a notion that thwarts every instinct of self-preservation that we possess. By exposing ourselves emotionally and physically in order to give or receive love, we become susceptible to the potentially destructive power of our lovers. This is the most basic reason why we struggle and perhaps in the end fail to make love a positive part of our lives."

"Loving another person is the external expression of our hope for the reciprocated creation of self-esteem and self-love. Based on these elements, we are able to establish a level of self-acceptance which engenders the belief that our life and individual character have meaning. When we learn to assign value to our own existence, we enter a state of self-realization. Love with another acts as a potential catalyst in this development because a love relationship provides external recognition and approval which many of us covet in order to inspire the movement towards self-realization."

"Yet this is when we perilously fall victim to the deleterious contradiction in love because we mistakenly connect the external positive assessment as the foundation from which we can attain self-acceptance. Instead of actually finding worth by understanding and accepting our inner selves, we soon develop a dependency on external recognition which weakens us through our concurrent vulnerability. Ironically, the addiction for approval from others that we suffer through can cause us to discard the standards that are crucial to our internal spirit."

"Mutually supportive love is so difficult to achieve because we are tempted to use the power that is derived when another is vulnerable before us. The only possibility is a process of sharing based on mutual respect. Yet the stimulation and intoxication of exercising control and power over another human are so tantalizing that love can become a dangerous power struggle," Nick finished.

"Love tempts us in so many ways, " agreed Greg, "but balance and equality are two factors which lessen the risk of manipulation and the abuse of power. Granted, there is no paragon for love because it is so highly subjective and infused with a complicated mixture of feelings, but when learning and growing are important objectives in a relationship then the result can be a productive form of sharing."

"In some relationships, a hierarchy is established as a means of expressing the parameters of shared love. Yet, as with all unequal forms of interaction, balance suffers."

"In contrast, when two people allow for the flexible expression of skill and talent, then an overall balance of power and an equality of respect can be achieved because the role of leader is interchangeable and easily transferred. Using this configuration, knowledge can also be exchanged through the sharing of a constant flow of instruction and the acceptance of information based on a foundation of trust. Through this type of love, the energy and wisdom of two people are combined and dramatically more beneficial."

"The issue of vulnerability can be handled in the same way. In fact, exposing our weaknesses can actually become energizing and therapeutic if trust and sensitivity are the guiding forces of love. In its most workable and productive form, it's almost like a mutual kind of protection: both people can agree, through trust, to share their vulnerable and weak sides knowing that the other person won't exploit that part of them; rather, they will nurture it, help give it life, and strengthen it through that act of sharing. It's a very difficult thing to do but a most glorious kind of interaction and communication if both people are committed to it."

"How is this different from frail dependency? The difference is that this type of love, this type of sharing, is a life-affirming process. In other words, it allows both people to benefit from the qualities that humans have which are decent and caring. Often we are overwhelmed by the onslaught of human behavior that is malevolent and callous to the extent that we lose faith in the ability of humans to achieve positive actions. Subsequently, if we allow ourselves to become immersed in negativity as our primary reaction to moral turpitude, we surrender any hope that we might have had in love as an efficacious part of life. However, what this type of relationship brings us is a chance to believe in our own capacity to love and the capacity of other humans to do the same. In this case, dependency is not an issue because we are affirming the existence of love and the human ability to love at a comprehensive level; we are not attempting to affirm our own self-worth based on external recognition," Greg concluded.

"Love is unique in that it is one of our emotions that society invariably attempts to characterize and subsequently regulate," Matt added. "The pattern is usually fairly straightforward: the organizing entity which acts in order to bond a society together establishes a standard which is designated as normal behavior. Once the norm has been sanctified by those who control power within a group, the multitude of variations and deviations that exist are labeled and subsequently assigned a certain level of social standing. This process can run the gamut from glorification to ostracism and inevitably those deemed as abnormal suffer varying forms of persecution. In the end, our need for the expression of love can engender chaotic results as it influences our decision-making in a wide range of societal spheres. It seems ironic that our collective yet seemingly subjective and private pursuit of amorous satisfaction becomes elemental in our process of civilized interaction," Matt stated.

"Hey, Jack! Clarence! Listen to this!" Albert yelled back to the counter as he smiled and sauntered over to the table. "These guys are talking about 'Love'! Isn't that sweet?! These guys can't keep a steady job, so instead they sit around my restaurant and talk about love! How about these guys?"

Albert stood at the head of the table and continued his ranting.

"I got a suggestion, fellas. Why don't you go out and earn a decent day's pay?! What's all this talk of love? I can promise you guys that you'll never get any love if you don't go out and get yourselves a job! Now get out of here!"



michael kors black friday jordan 13 bred uggs black friday black infrared 6s michael kors cyber monday jordan 11 legend blue jordan 6 black infrared uggs cyber monday north face cyber monday michael kors black friday black infrared 6s jordan 11 legend blue jordan 11 legend blue legend blue 11s black infrared 6s beats by dre cheap beats by dre black friday beats by dre cheap coach black friday jordan 13 grey toe beats by dre cyber monday bred 13s legend blue 11s jordan 11 legend blue grey toe 13s coach black friday bred 13s uggs cyber monday jordan 6 black infrared black infrared 6s jordan 13 bred coach cyber monday black infrared 6s lebron 12 jordan 6 black infrared michael kors cyber monday black infrared 6s jordan 11 legend blue barons 13s uggs black friday black infrared 6s uggs cyber monday north face black friday jordan 11 legend blue beats by dre black friday north face cyber monday coach outlet coach cyber monday black infrared 6s jordan 11 legend blue jordan 13 bred lululemon black friday jordan 6 black infrared beats by dre black friday jordan 11 legend blue uggs black friday beats by dre black friday uggs black friday coach outlet online black infrared 23 13s