Monday, June 23, 2014

Been a minute since I've shown this site some love...

So, over two years have passed since I've dug around the interwebz uncovering my favorite cherished love stories, and a lot has happened since then. In May of 2012, I was still living in NYC, somewhat nursing a version of a broken, or at least wounded, heart and preparing to leave America for a year in the Middle East. ...Fast forward two years, and I've returned to NYC and am now currently in Hong Kong on a temporary assignment before heading back to the Big Apple in August. But throughout the months of not posting on Archaeologist of Love, I've constantly thought of my abandoned blog, the reasons why I fell silent, and have long considered resuming my mission to highlight the truest romantic love stories that can only be rivaled by the movies. I still maintain that ART IMITATES LIFE, especially when it comes to love and relationships; many writers find inspiration for their "unrealistic" stories from things that have actually happened to other people. I've yet to see a love story in the RomComs that have not happened to someone somewhere at some point... So, there's no debate, just restating why I started this blog in the first place: I was at a dinner back in 2011 where someone mentioned that the love you see in the movies is often a fabrication or embellishment of what you see in real life, and that's just not the case. Hence the romantically authentic posts on this blog.

So, why the hiatus, and why am I back?

Well, in a manner of speaking, I stopped looking for love, for myself, romantically speaking. I'm not talking about in a self-destructive or self-hate sort of way. And I don't mean having been depressed and rejecting love altogether. (Though maybe I did reject certain ideas about possible prospects for myself during that time.) But I entered into a space of self-survival when I first moved abroad, and had very little interest in trying to cultivate a love alliance with anyone when my daily aim was to navigate the most tumultuous matters of my life.To compound the emotional weight, I had left behind a six year ball of confusion in the way of my own love affairs. In the aftermath of a relationship that was never clearly defined but existed in the clear reality of significant others habitually turning to one another, I wanted time to sort the separation of myself from such heart-wrenching dynamics. I loved a man, for years, and considered him the love of my life. He loved me, for years, but did not consider me the love of his. Without many more details, we were friends before [what I call] the love affair, and exist as friends beyond that experience. From his vantage point, maybe it was never a love affair at all, maybe it was the blurred lined of friends-turned-loved ones. I can't speak for him, only myself. In the retelling of my life story, it was the love affair that I will never forget, with a person for whom I will always feel connected. In my hope for the future, it is a love affair that I would either love to trump altogether in my mind with a whole new experience in the way of love manifesting.

Stepping away from this blog, then, meant trying to clear my mind of all things romantic love. It's been a revolutionary couple of years, personally speaking. I've traveled over the globe, ticking countries off of my "to visit" list, and have done the most extraordinary things that many envy. But, I have not resolved my heart. I remain in a place of "what is going on with me and love?" And I recognize that the more time you spend in the world, the more you feel the need to share that time with a significant other.

There's so much more for to say... but I'll leave it at... I'm glad to finally be in a place to resume my mission to uncover the greatest love stories and post them here, inspiration to myself, if no one else. I can never be sure who's reading this blog, if anyone really. But, as countless blogs end up being, it's a testament to who I currently am, and the things that define my thinking today.

This badu instant classic feels so appropriate in this moment... there's no common law lover in my life who wants another, but I just feel like a recovering undercover over lover. So, there it is, people in recovery do find their restoration, and so shall it be.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Strong love in ballad

Years ago, late one night, I heard this version of "That's How Strong My Love Is" by Little Milton, and it brought me to tears. ...I wanted to hear it again tonight.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Louis & Lucille

I've decided that the love of my life will, at some point, 
be compelled to serenade me amongst the pyramids and Sphinx. ♥

Louis Armstrong Playing for His Wife, Lucille in Giza - 1961.
Armstrong, one of the most influential jazz musicians in history,
was married to Lucille from 1942 until his death in 1971.

An interview with Lucille Armstrong:
"Louis always told me, whatever you want to do, you can do..."

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Elizabeth Catlett & Francisco Mora (w/son) c. 1950

You KNOW I love to highlight the LOVE STORY in everyone's life, so I'll do that with Ms. Catlett's story as well!!! So, from what I've gathered, in 1941 Ms. Catlett married artist Charles White, who like her was an Aries (born on April 2nd) and taught at HU (where she is an alum); they remained married for 5 years, it seems until 1946. The same year that her first marriage ended, she went to Mexico on a fellowship, and within the year married artist Francisco Mora (In 1947) when she was around 32. They remained together for 56 years, until his death. Among very successful individual careers, they had three sons,10 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. They also exhibited worldwide together. ♥ That's a GREAT love story!!!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Carmen de Lavallade and Geoffrey Holder

Carmen de Lavallade and Geoffrey Holder have long been a favorite couple of mine. They met forty some-odd years ago, both striking dancer artists, and were married within the month.... Geoffrey having proposed four days after the met.........! ♥ #swooooooon!

Here, Ms. de Lavallade explains why their 47 year marriage has sustained:
"He's been my champion, and my fan. And I've been his fan..... He's supportive.
I don't know many people when you're married your husband let's you
go flying off in different directions....
Life is what it is with it's ups and downs and you butt heads, but that's living...."

"Dancers are peculiar. They don't see the world like most people. They just see their world. If you have a desire, it doesn't matter what the world is doing. You're gonna do it."
-- Carmen de Lavallade

View more of their 47 years of dancing together!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Courageous love--

From the Makes Me Think website, I am inspired by these excerpts:

* Today, the man that saved my life 28 years ago when he singlehandedly fought off three other men who were trying to rape me, walks with a cane due to the leg injury he suffered by doing so. And he looked so proud today when he put down his cane and slowly walked our daughter down the aisle. MMT

* Today, outside the doctor’s office, approximately 15 minutes after we received the discouraging news about my incurable cancer, she got down on one knee and asked me to marry her. MMT

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Pawn shop + guitar + nice guy - jerk = TRUE LOVE!

Last month a friend sent me a link to 99 tiny true stories that make you THINK, wow it's bigger than what I could ever imagine. Many of them were unbelievable yet totally believable love stories. I intend to repost my favorite ones here, since I DIG love so much ;D

"Today, it’s been ten years since my abusive ex-fiancĂ© sold my favorite guitar. He sold it on the day I left him. When I went to claim my belongings, he was proud that he had sold it to a pawn shop. Luckily, I managed to track down the guy who bought it from the pawn shop. He was really sweet, and gave it back to me for free, on the condition that I accompany him on his front porch for an hour to play guitar with him. He grabbed a second guitar and we ended up sitting there on his porch for the rest of the afternoon playing music, talking, and smiling. He’s been my husband for nine years now." ♥

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

"Life has taught us that love does not consist in gazing at each other 
but in looking outward together in the same direction." 
-Antoine De Saint-Exupery

♥ Happy Valentine's Day ♥

Please baby, please baby, please baby, baby, baby, PLEASE! Kind of LOVE!

...Spike & Tonya...

So, I never really put a lot of thought into how Spike Lee and his wife Tonya Lewis Lee met, until last night on the BET Honors when he shared that they’ve been together for twenty years! He joked that she deserved an award for being married to him for so long! It  was an endearing loving moment, and it got my wheels turning.. so WHAT’S their story? Well, according to a these excerpts I dug up (archaeologist that I am!), it began like this, interestingly enough:

It was a dinner for the Congressional Black Caucus: “My father insisted I go to represent the family,” she says. She and Spike crossed paths and immediately noticed each other. “I was going up the stairs, and he was going down the escalator. He was with a date—of course, some women would have no respect, but I did. But he came back around, and he was like, ‘Who are you here with? Do you have a date? Do you have a boyfriend?’ He said, ‘Why don’t you have a boyfriend?’ I said I just haven’t met the right guy yet. He did a little jig.” Spike was there promoting his film Malcolm X. Tonya remembers thinking it strange for him to be so animated given his enormous public image, but apparently, he was smitten at first sight. On their first date, he took her to the party for Madonna’s book Sex. “You know what’s so funny? He was really ready to commit.”

Lee immediately asked her to accompany him to his house in Oak Bluffs, a vacation destination on Martha’s Vineyard… It was a technique Lee had employed with less success a few years earlier on the model Veronica Webb, whom he cast as his wife in Jungle Fever. Webb wrote about the experience in her book, Sight: “Spike is putting sexual pressure on me. I don’t like it. I hate it. Tomorrow he wants me to go to Martha’s Vineyard with him. The guy just won’t take no for an answer.”

Webb complained that “like a lot of young powerful men, Spike had a case of ‘kingitis,’ where the world revolves around their every wish and whatever’s in the way of their wishes is a complete and utterly unworthy lump of shit as far as they’re concerned.” If Lee’s bedside manner was aggressive, it was also effective: Webb ended up dating him for a year. A year later Tonya Lewis became his wife.

Ha! Well…..when it’s right, IT’S RIGHT! You have to be willing to take that ride, and the moment HAS TO BE RIGHT..... but like Stevie said, If it's maaaaagic.... You know. So, I am inspired. ♥

Follow the one for whom you are smitten, and twenty years later, you could be thanking them for having added greatness to your life!  (AND she, along with my own mom, proves that you can have a life long love affair with a strong brotha who is SHORTER than you!! ;)

The excerpts are from the following links:

Thursday, February 9, 2012

[Infinite] Love According to Gandhi.

Infinite Love is a weapon of matchless potency.
It is the “summum bonum” of Life.
It is an attribute of the brave, in fact it is their all.
It does not come within the reach of the coward.
It is not wooden or lifeless dogma but a living and life-giving force.
It is the special attribute of the heart.
-Mohandas Gandhi


Kasturba Gandhi, known affectionately as Ba, was married to Mohandas Gandhi in 1882 when she was but thirteen years old. When Gandhi left for London in 1888, she did not accompany him: she was already a mother, since Harilal had been born earlier that year. Manilal was born to them in 1892; Ramdas followed in 1897, and Devadas, the last of their four sons, was born in 1900. In 1906, Gandhi decided to observe brahamacharya, or observe the vow of chastity: and thereafter Mohandas and Kasturba never had any sexual relations. Gandhi himself wrote that Kasturba eagerly assented to his decision to take a vow, but we do not have this from her own mouth, and some modern feminist readings have taken this an instance of Gandhi's overbearing attitudes.

It is unequivocally clear, however, that Kasturba worked alongside her husband. When Gandhi became involved in the agitation to improve working conditions for Indians in South Africa and give them the power to represent themselves, Kasturba eventually decided to join the struggle. In September 1913, she was arrested, and sentenced to three months' imprisonment at hard labor. On numerous subsequent occasions in India, she took Gandhi's place when he was under arrest, and was always closely associated with the struggle in India, giving encouragement to women volunteers.

Kasturba was to develop into a very considerable figure in her own right, but sadly she has scarcely received the attention she deserves. She showed an independence of spirit, and Gandhi's autobiography records an incident when he was almost tempted, in a moment of acute anger, to throw her out of the home. He had asked that she should contribute, as did everyone else at their ashram, to menial tasks; and though she agreed, she balked at having to clean the toilets, and flatly refused to do so. There were also disagreements between them on the care of their sons, whom Kasturba (like some others) was inclined to believe had been neglected by their father. Gandhi, on the other hand, took the view that as his sons, they were entitled to no special privileges. Harilal, in particular, caused her great sorrow, and when he once arrived at her bedside during her last illness, she burst into tears.

Mohandas and Kasturba remained married for sixty-two years, but it is one of the marriages about which we know very little, though Gandhi's own life has been recorded in excruciatingly minute detail. We do not really know, for example, how she received the presence of other women who were to become Gandhi's followers and devotees, to the point where they, rather than Kasturba, attended to his daily needs. Yet this very question presumes the centrality of the husband-wife nexus over all others, and this may be a way of approaching questions that have had little resonance in Indian culture. Contemporary witnesses have testified to the extraordinary bonds of affection between them. Following the 'Quit India' movement, Kasturba joined her husband in detention at the Aga Khan's Palace in Poona. It is there that she died in 1944; Gandhi was at her bedside, and a picture taken just after her death shows Gandhi huddled in a corner, a pale shadow of himself.

Copyright, Vinay Lal, 2001, 2012