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Berger’s Burg: The dreadful whims and wherefores of love

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Readers, I have an important message for you. Don't get emotional, don't be annoyed and, for heaven's sake, don't send nasty letters to me. My message is clear, concise, and precise, and it will save your minds and bodies from severe cases of shock and awe. It will also cut down on aggravation, nervousness, and severe agita. Simply put: Avoid falling in love. Why? I will tell you.Every Valentine's Day, Gloria keeps asking for something in diamonds and I keep buying her a deck of cards. On Feb. 14, Valentine's Day will be wrapping itself around TimesLedger land. That is the day set aside for all you amorous, enamored, infatuated, and impassioned romantics out there to think about love. You will hear bells, even when there are no bells. You will feel butterflies fluttering, even when there are no butterflies in sight. And, you will act as though there are bees in your bonnet, even when you know the bees are hibernating for the winter. A person should never have to go through all that fuss and bother.I love women. I also love pastrami. Unfortunately, I can't have pastrami anymore, either.Heavy-breathing, weak-kneed, and trembling-toes people, did you ever wonder why you feel these sensations? Well, make yourself comfortable while Professor Berger explains the real skinny on the "birds and the bees" and why you should avoid love at any cost.While courting Gloria, I secretly carved her name on a tree. As we were walking towards the tree, I asked her to stop. Before I could surprise her, the tree fell on me.You know, of course that love is blind. But did you know that love is also stupid? Scientists have scanned the brains of many love-struck individuals like you and discovered that their feelings of love led to a suppression of activity in the parts of the brain that control critical thought. That disrupted the lovebirds' thinking process, rendering them for all practical purposes, ignorant, dim-witted, and stupid! Did you also know that a motorist was recently ticketed on Northern Boulevard for DWS (Driving While Stupid)? Don't allow that to happen to you.Love makes the world go 'round and is said to conquer all things. But it doesn't conquer poverty and a toothache. People like you tend to view love solely as a unique, satisfying, pleasurable feeling, and you symbolize it with flowers, chocolates, and an engagement ring. Fugeddaboutit! I'll break the bad news to you slow and gentle Ð scientifically speaking, love is merely a sense of brain rhythms, increased blood flow, and elevated heart rates. It is the granddaddy of all emotions and sets off disagreeable metabolic changes, such as dilation of pupils, sweaty palms, rising body temperature Ð and, yes, the burning desire to make a little whoopee, also. Are you aware of all of this?Gloria sent me a Valentine Day card last year. It read, "You are dark and handsome. When it's dark, you are handsome." And that's not all. Love also changes our eating patterns, sleeping patterns, and mood patterns. In addition, paramours have reported having had emotional sensitivity, laughing jags, crying jags, and ice-cream craving jags when head over heels in love. Do you still want to put your poor body through that whenever you meet Mr. or Ms. Right.?Last Valentine's Day, I asked Gloria what she likes about me best Ð my great body or my rugged good looks. She said my sense of humor.On the plus side, love does promote positive physiology changes by filling the brain with feel-good pleasure-boosting chemicals, which instill emotional lifts ("highs") similar to those experienced during heavy exercise, cigarettes, drugs, or after a chocolate binge. Hmm! On second thought, falling in love might not be so bad after all.I have a new plan for Valentine's Day. I will do some heavy lifting in the morning, followed by devouring a quart of forbidden chocolate ice cream (sprinkled with Viagra), while puffing on a cigar in the afternoon. And, if things work out, I may not return to work for a fortnight.Research indicates that people who are in a loving relationship live longer than those who aren't. And men and women who lack such social support appear to experience a larger percentage of obesity, clogged arteries, and broken hearts. So, now with my change of heart, and with Gloria by my side, I expect to live to 120 years. Remember: To love and be loved is to feel the sun from both sides.Finally, Gloria and I want to wish everyone a special and happy Valentine of love. Amore!

Posted 7:06 pm, October 10, 2011
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