CM: Do you think that once romantic love is entered into a marriage, it becomes conditional?
Isabel Allende: I think so. In my long life, in my experience, you can love your friends unconditionally. Your parents. Your children. Your pets, of course. I love my dog unconditionally, but never the man I’m sleeping with.
CM: Interesting. Why do you think that is?
IA: I want something back. It’s such an intimate and profound relationship that it cannot be unconditional. I can only compare the intimacy of sex with the intimacy of the mother with a newborn baby. But with a newborn baby, it is unconditional. You would give your life for that little baby. It’s not the same when you are in a sexual relationship unless you feel that you are loved as you love.
CM: Are romantic love and companionship mutually exclusive?
IA: I think that the perfect arrangement, the perfect couple, would be a couple that have been able to preserve the romantic and passionate bond, and they are great, great friends. Friendship is all about trust and sharing. Passionate and romantic love is all about sex and emotions. You have to try to combine those, I think. The great marriages, the great couples I know, have both.
I’m having a really good time doing my Friday roundup columns on Zèbre. It’s forcing me to remember, and it’s forcing me to pay attention to the details and write down things that are outside of myself—I only hope that they’re of interest to others.
Here are the last 3:
Every time I try to refocus this blog, I can’t seem to stay on track. Personal essays are scattered in with one-off songs and images and reblogs, and the lack of continuity drives me nuts.
In an attempt to create a place on the internet where I post things that have been through a few revisions or even taken a week to initially write, I’ve teamed up with a couple friends, Mallory and Kelsey, to create Zèbre. The name is of no consequence. It’s a long-running inside joke. All you need to know is that it’s up and running—slowly, to start—and we’ve got a few pieces up at zebrezebre.com.
Hi, I’m going to rate some things on this overcast (quel surprise!) but strangely balmy San Francisco morning.
Making a new friend: A+
Straight Outta Compton: A-
The sushi last night in Japantown: B-
The “Secret Breakfast” Humphrey Slocombe ice cream flavor: C, surprisingly
Feeling like the world is full of possibilities after feeling like a bum in a dark hole for the past week and a half: A+++
The Saga series: A
This book club I’m a part of: A
Another book club event I definitely don’t want to be a part of: “Discuss Modern Romance, picnic… and maybe yoga!”: C
The subtle sexism in this one Meetup group I’ve been going to: F
My camera being broken: F
Leaving work at 3 pm to go camping in the redwoods: A+++
The Twirl and Dip swirl cone dipped in TCHO chocolate with sea salt on top: A for taste; D for price
The fact that summer fruit season is almost over: F
The health of the very expensive plant I bought: A!
My TMJ: F
The number of times I catch myself grinding my teeth on a daily basis: F
Revisiting this New Yorker story about pandas: A
My local laundromat: B+
Living in San Francisco: Still an A