Aunt Tenaj offers advice on your quick-beating heart


Janet's World

February 14, 2010|By Janet Gilbert | Special to The Baltimore Sun

It's Valentine's Day 2010, and Janet of Janet's World is nowhere to be found. Apparently, she has taken the day off to engage in a love fest of activities. These include, but are not limited to: cooking with chocolate, watching romantic comedies and writing the kind of sappy poetry she penned while growing up in a constant state of crushes on guys who could not possibly know she existed - from David Cassidy of "The Partridge Family" to Ron Howard of "Happy Days."

In her stead, a special guest columnist appears today, Aunt Tenaj, who will answer your urgent, family-friendly love questions.

Let us take a moment to get to know her. Aunt Tenaj is a woman of a certain age, experienced in matters of the heart. She is discerning about yearning, with the ability to be on fire with desire and yet ration her passion.

Regular readers may wonder if Aunt Tenaj is yet another clever example of the backward spelling technique so often used in this column to protect privacy. Aunt Tenaj would like to deflect this line of questioning by pointing out that her name has a mystical ring to it, as if she hailed from a faraway romantic land such as India. If you do not think India is a romantic land, Aunt Tenaj urges you to rent "Jodhaa Akbar" immediately and enjoy a full three hours and 33 minutes of unabated longing, interspersed with fiery battles and bloodshed. Now that's what love is all about!

And now, without further ado, Aunt Tenaj dips into her Valentine's Day mailbag:

Dear Aunt Tenaj: How do I ask a girl out?

-Josh, age 10

Dear Josh: Please go back to your Game Boy. If you insist, you may "like" someone, but you are in the fourth grade, buddy! You should confine your activities to stealing her hat on the playground or making a really ugly face at her whenever she looks at you. Trust Aunt Tenaj, Josh - kids break up with each other frequently at your age, with the same forethought and consideration they use breaking apart a KitKat bar. Wait until you can handle this sort of cavalier attitude with grace and maturity. This occurs at about the time you can define and can spell the word cavalier.

Dear Aunt Tenaj: How do I know if I am in love?

- Jackie, age 17

Dear Jackie: Do you feel like you've just had four cups of espresso when you see the person? Do you attempt to say something smooth on a date, but end up saying something awkward like, "I just watched a TV show on how ceramic sushi knives are made." Do you think the person is just perfect?

If you've answered "Yes" to any of these questions, you are not in love.

Jackie, you will know you are in love if you feel like you've just had a cup of espresso in a comfortable chair when you see the person. When you watch a program together on how ceramic sushi knives are made and call it a date. And when you know he is not perfect, but he is nonetheless perfect for you.

Dear Aunt Tenaj: I've been married more than 50 years. Do I have to get my wife a Valentine's Day present?

-Sam, age 80

Dear Sam: Yes.

Dear Aunt Tenaj: How does true love feel?

- Marcia, age 45

Dear Marcia: True love is uncomfortable. It's the realization that you just won't ever feel right or confident anymore about anything important until you communicate it to that special person in your life. Love is terrifying, because it's a shape-shifting monster of an emotion that demands you constantly change and adjust to all sorts of unexpected conditions. Finally, love is plain awful, because it hands you the responsibility of nurturing and protecting someone else's heart.

In short, it's just the greatest thing ever.

Discuss this story and others in our talk forums Most recent local news talk forum topics:

More news talk forums: Local | Nation/World | Business | Health/Science | Computers/Technology
Note: In-story commenting has been temporarily disabled due to technical issues. We are working to correct the issue and will bring back this feature in the future. In the meantime, please use our talk forums to discuss stories.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.