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Lessons in Love (1)

BFD by Mike Dive on YouTube

A serious dissing song if I ever heard one. This is not an example of love. It’s hate… but it’s so catchy. And it reminds you of every asshole who ever took advantage of you somewhere in the song, doesn’t it?

I thought of it because I’m eating cake. And it’s catchy. (Doo bee doooooo.)

Of course, the music video is also mesmerizing. Great job, Mr. Diva!

Everyone probably wonders how I transition from that to Shania Twain’s That Don’t Impress Me Much. Well, it’s another song about not loving. In fact, it’s a song about rapists. People who don’t know how to adjust their touch based on a woman’s feedback. Man handlers.

We have millions of songs out there like this. In fact, most songs not an actual love song is a type of hatred. Some love songs are hatred, too. I can show you…

Locked Out of Heaven by Bruno Mars on YouTube

Wait, wait, wait, SANSARA! You’ve got it all wrong! This is a LOVE SONG! It makes me melt!

Okay… you are so inundated in rape culture you cannot see how this song is terrible for all of mankind. (It’s still catchy, though. I even enjoy it… but I also know it’s wrong.) But how can that BE?!

I’ll give you a minute to get over the fact that it’s not a love song.




“Yeah, you make me feel like I’ve been locked out of heaven…
You bring me to my knees, you make me testify
You can make a sinner change his ways
Open up your gates ’cause I can’t wait to see the light

No, these lines aren’t one after another in the song, just stick with me. The word MAKE is a rape word. Period. The End. To use force in any way is to run over someone else’s boundary against their will. It’s rape. This song is absolutely about sex, which means it’s literally about rape, to boot. But I posit we should use the word RAPE to indicate someone transgressed an innate boundary of our person, whether it’s a physical transgression or not. I say that because once we normalize trampling any boundary whatsoever, it enables us to feel less remorse to trample the next and the next… catapulting us from normal human being to psychopath (eventually.)

Now I also highlight “’cause I can’t wait to see the light.” Bruno Mars is demanding sex from a woman and it is quite clear that he only loves her when he’s having sex with her. I know that’s not the message he’s trying to send. It’s not even the message you’re trying to hear, either. No, what you want to hear is “the sex is so great it changed the man.”

Yeah, but consider other songs by this fool: That’s What I Like (a song about rape again, esp. getting what he wants without considering what his woman wants), 24K Magic (flirting with marriage, but has the man stayed married? It’s just a fashion statement to him.), Uptown Funk (BITCH is not a loving word, sorry, folks), and let’s not forget about The Lazy Song. I don’t think I need to call that one out with any specificity…

Anyway, not to be mean to Mr. Mars — I know he’s maturing as he writes his music, like all musicians do. I’m not trying to hate on him… I’m trying to show you how we take songs that literally have hateful messages and idolize them as something else. There is nothing wrong with the way Mr. Mars expresses himself and, in fact, I love most of his music. I just don’t think he understands love yet. Avril Lavigne beat him to it…

It Was In Me by Avril Lavigne on YouTube

We have to pay attention to the language we use, including in the music we listen to. It’s how our children learn what is acceptable and what is not. It’s also how autists learn about the “normal” world. Through art.

Would these songs be the same without the word “make”? I think they’d be better, at the end of the day.

What’s worse than all that is that we mistake infatuation for love.

Your Love is My Drug by Ke$ha on YouTube

(I love Ke$ha, she’s one of my spirit animals, so don’t think I’m dishin’ hate here. I’m just trying to illuminate a systemic issue we have in the ‘States, if not everywhere.)

Disclaimer: I love all this music and all these musicians.

My point is… we listen to things that sort of sound like love, but it’s not love. In very tiny ways — from the word make to simply waxing eloquent on temporary infatuation, which it is arguable that Locked Out of Heaven is just as much about pure infatuation, might I add — we are re-affirming to ourselves in just about every way that true love is a myth. Nobody believes in romance anymore unless they’ve already got it. They believe all the “good ones” are taken, especially as one gets older and older.

Now I’m going to blow your world up:

  1. It’s your fault, too.
  2. Everyone is supposed to be growing every day, at least one baby step at a time. Who they are today is not who they’re going to be in twenty years. And if they are the same, that’s a narcissist, honey. They’re never going to change. And they don’t give a shit about you, I can promise you that.
  3. It’s supposed to be a partnership. You shouldn’t have to demand your partner be your partner. You should be able to inspire them to be your partner. Effortlessly just by being yourself. You should also be helping them up so they can run alongside you and match your stride — if they want to. And if they don’t want to, that doesn’t mean you have to slow down… you just have to circle back, so save some steam.
  4. All you really need is love. The rest is… icing on the cake. (You might need laughter, too.)
  5. Understand the only person you can control is yourself. Once you master The Self(TM), the entire world changes around you in subtle ways. Or, perhaps more accurately, your perspective changes and you are more easily able to perceive when a lack of love is being thrown at you like darts at a balloon. Which is most people, by the by, no matter who you are. Even Brad Pitt, if you listened to Shania there.

So what is love? (Baby, don’t hurt me, don’t hurt me no more.) I feel you, Mr. Haddaway. I give my love away to insolent bastards who fool me into thinking they aren’t shit heads for about six months before their facade fades and they just can’t help themselves, heaping hatred upon hatred on me as if I’m a vapid, shallow Barbie (blow up) doll, trying to force me to misbehave just like them. To prove that I’m an evil cunt on the inside somewhere.

I’ll take cake, please.

Spaceship by Ke$ha on YouTube. (It’s for the blind!)

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