Morning Meditations #89: The Giant Crush Monster

MM 89
Spring Maples of my backyard, which have already seeded against a perfect Ozark sky.

I am total a crush monster these days.” I’ve said this to a couple of people lately. The response has been unanimous, “What’s a ‘crush monster’.” I didn’t know the term would be so cryptic when I first referred to myself as such. Not wishing to be misunderstood, I have been searching my mind for an adequate definition. This morning, after two hours of editing, I think I am ready to compose an answer which will settle this issue forever (I know you are relieved beyond expression).

A “crush monster” is a person who has moved beyond sexual cravings alone, and finds herself or himself with a new premium on intimacy. For me, this is an idiological1 representation of how my interpretation is changing since “the block”2. The wrong impression to take from this is that I was on some kind of sexual conquest campaign previous to this understanding. My drive had been normal, healthy, but I hadn’t noticed the desire for something more was absent until its reemergence in the last, oh, I don’t know, ten days-ish. What a shock to the Cartesian observer. Here I was, thinking I wanted something more with someone, yet outside of the ability to perceive a huge factor of my internal environment. No wonder all the flings have had no fucking oomph behind them, whatsoever. Asleep at the switch of the runaway emotional train we call consciousness is every person’s portion, but to think how motivated I felt for an intimate relationship, and how ridiculously incapable of one I must have been. Now that I am partially caught up on how I feel about myself, this leaves the question of, “why didn’t I pick up on it sooner?”

A question to which I will now annoyingly be unable to answer with any credentials. My hypothesis is two fold, thus far. First, I am going to fall back on philosophy, always a bad idea. It takes time to heal. That is likely the larger portion of it. As my brain slowly rewires during the recovery from being addicted to my last love, I should be having moments when “normal” brain function begins to resume.3 I think this is my return to a normal mind’s craving for intimacy via intellectual connection and physical expression. Secondly, because I have been blinded by modern cultures constant parade of an increased healthy sexuality. I don’t want to be misunderstood as saying that healthy sex is in some way unimportant, but I believe there is some cultural confusion about healthy sex equaling intimacy. And I may have bought into that.

Not that there is a recent loss of intimacy, or a decline in the value of intimacy, in our culture, and indeed, intimacy including and beyond sexuality is known to be one of the most powerful forces in all of human experience.4 And our culture has slowly, and often painfully, become more accepting of a range of experiences and behaviors we define as “intimate”.

Despite this, the commercial emphasis on healthy sex uses our notion of intimacy to sell. This trend dates back to the late nineteenth century when the world becomes acquainted with the first personals in print, which have evolved into online dating sites, who cater to their subscribers sure, but they like their advertisers even more.5 And we’re all familiar with ED medication commercials basically saying, “Don’t you want to be like this slightly sexy older couple? They’re getting ready to ‘do it’ because this pill is so awesome.” When I am unfortunate enough to behold one of these expositions, I am always struck by how nobody is having sex. They are all doing something we think of as relationship building, and what is that? Oh, intimacy.

Just because you can get laid, doesn’t mean you’ll enjoy a round of racquetball with the tasty thing you just brought home from your church revival.

Of course this is everywhere, Coke used it to sell poisonous diet soda, Buns of Steel used it to sell a virtuously useless workout, and the marketers know the that if they can link sex to intimacy they can sell one for the other. That seems dangerous.

I know that some men and women use sex as their product. Not just in the prostitution industry, but potentially models known for their nudes, pornography producers, and your proud local nymphos are all in the business of using sex to manipulate behavior. And, as long as you tell us that is what you are up to, no prob. When you capitalize on human nature to sell an unhealthy product or lifestyle you are being immoral, and hurting society. Deleterious to them because your sales tactics are also conditioning people into behaviors that have zero to do with the fucking product6 without regard to health of any kind.

Sick, twisted, and retarding.

Okay, so I brought my credentials with me, habits being habitual, I guess I’ll let myself off the hook.

The Curch has done it for millennium, and so have ruling classes, sometimes they are the same. Now we get an evolved version. Modern oligarchies, where once again, we face the potential for entities vying for that total power. Corporations who own governments and wield churches. And they had me thinking one thing is another again. Damnit!

Snickers is barely food, and sex alone isn’t intimacy. This is something I think we all get on the surface, but it took 38 years and roughly 15 weeks to, not just know it, but become aware of where it lives in my own mind, apparently, in the form of a giant crush monster.

Phew, you feel better.

I feel better.

1 That’s right, I am coining this term if it hasn’t been already, and Google knows nothing of it. “Idiological: adj. Discribing the qualities of being an idiom; describing the way an idea exists and evolves over time.” So there.

3 Urschel, Harold. Healing the Addicted Brain: The Revolutionary, Science-based Alcoholism and Addiction Recovery Program. Naperville, IL: Source. 2009.

4 Prager, Karen Jean. The Psychology of Intimacy. New York: Guilford, 1995.

5 Epstein, Pamela Ilyse. SELLING LOVE: THE COMMERCIALIZATION OF INTIMACY IN AMERICA, 1860s-1900s. Diss. Rutgers, 2010. New Brunswick: Rutgers Universtiy, 2010.

6 Janiszewski, Chris, and Luk Warlop. “The Influence of Classical Conditioning Procedures on Subsequent Attention to the Conditioned Brand”. Journal of Consumer Research 20.2 (1993): 171–189.

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