Valentine’s day is here again. It’s fun, it’s fraught and … this blog’s family oriented, so I’m going to stop there. However, as much fun as it is for the lovers of this world; spare a thought for the guy who works overtime all day long. Yep, Cupid.
Cupid took over from Eros. Well, when I say took over, Eros held the intellectual high ground on love, Cupid just picked up the more physical side of things (it was in his Roman genes). While Eros spent time posing for statues, Cupid just got down and, er, on with things. That gives the guy plenty to talk about, and fortunately, by the magic of email, he’s agreed to give us an insight into his yet-to-be-published autobiography …
I was pretty young when I was approach to take the position of God of Desire. It seemed like a good gig at the time, so I signed up without reading through all the fine print. Boy, was that a mistake. Let me tell you, any Deity comes along with a contract for you to sign – make sure you read it all. These guys don’t do things by halves, a few thousand years later and they still have me working by fingers to the bone, and I’m still a baby. But things are getting better, I’ve got a much more relaxed approach to the whole love-and-desire thing now.
Back in my early days, Eros gave me a bow and arrow. What’s that you say? Stole? No, no, that was all a misunderstanding. I told Eros I was going to borrow it and give it back when I was done, and technically I’m not done, so there. His civil suit is just sour grapes, he’s still a big draw on the modeling circuit, so what’s he complaining about?
Ok, so there I am, bow and arrow in hand, wandering around, instilling lust and desire with a flick of the wrist. At least I was when my aim improved. To start with I just shot people in the butt, to wit the whole Dido and Aeneas saga. I told her at the time not to put all her faith in a Trojan, but would she listen? Different consequences, but it’s the same story today of course …
After a few hundred years the Romans started getting out of hand. I had to run from one appointment to the next. There were arrows flying in all directions. I was exhausted all the time. That’s when I put my foot down, or more specifically my arrows, and demanded wings. It didn’t take long before the Gods were begging me to get back to work and the wings were on my back.
Now, wings are good. If you ever get the chance to try them, go for it, they’re a blast. On the smiting-people-with-desire front they were pretty good too. I could get from one Roman orgy to the next in no time. I was popular at all the “in” parties and first on everyone’s invitation list.
The next thousand years were a blast. With wings I cut out all the tedious walking around. Bow developments perfected longer and longer ranges, and before you know it I was able to just turn up in a town, sit in a burger joint and spread love and desire from where I sat. When planes and trains were invented I could travel in style, and boy did I clock up the frequent flyer miles. Course, I had to go first class, all those parties had plenty of food, and I do like my food.
People often ask why I’ve stuck with the bow. Well, I’ve tried other methods, but the bow is best. I tried daggers (a chat with some dude called Shakespeare about a chick named Juliet put paid to that idea) and bullets (the ricochets – wow, talk about love triangles). I did hold out hope for the glove. It didn’t work, but it did teach me a lesson.
Ok, ok, I can hear you asking “a glove?” See, if you’re going to toy with someone’s affections, you can’t just go up to them and have a quick chat. Well, not if you’re a three foot tall cherubim who’s a “touch” on the heavy side. No, in my case I need something to get people’s attention. I experimented with various types of gloves, and settled on black leather. It gives a good smack and certainly gets the attention, besides, the pink fluffy one made the guys laugh at me. These things are important when you’re a three thousand year old baby.
So things were going great; I was smacking my way from one lonely heart to another, and I didn’t have to carry all those arrows (because you never get them back you know, no matter what they promise).
Now, I know what you’re thinking, where’s the glove today? Well, one day I was in France, slapped this guy on the cheek because he was patently ignoring the girl who was pining over him, and quick as a flash he’s waving a sword, shouting duel and all sorts. Normally I’m not one to back away from conflict (I do start plenty of it, after all), but this guy was wild. He broke up the furniture, smashed the windows, and kicked my butt (and there was plenty of it at the time).
I was about to strike him off my list and banish him to eternal singledom when I had an epiphany, I was out of shape, seriously out of shape. I mean, I’m Roman, we like ours chubby (or at least we did before the Vandals turned up) but I was pushing it. So that was it, I was straight back to the bow, the arrows – and the treadmill.
These days I’ve dropped a bunch of pounds, I’m eating healthy and getting plenty of exercise. In fact, people say they don’t recognize me (probably something to do with the love is blind thing). On the up side, I’m getting more done than ever – so if you’ve been waiting for that special someone, be nice, I might just be in your neighborhood this year!