Defining Love by Stanley Greene

The first thing you miss once a loved one has passed away is their voice. In 2016, Pep Bonet recorded Stanley Greene talk about his life, his experiences working as a photographer, but also his thoughts and vision about our…

Defining Love by Stanley Greene

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The first thing you miss once a loved one has passed away is their voice.

In 2016, Pep Bonet recorded Stanley Greene talk about his life, his experiences working as a photographer, but also his thoughts and vision about our world.

On this day, Valentine’s Day, but also Stanley’s birthday, we’d like to share with you all what he defined as Love.

Recorded by Pep Bonet / NOOR in Paris, France, 2016.

Transcript:

Love.

L.o.v.e.

You know love is a very misused word: “I love you, I want you, I need you, I’m in love with you.” For a long time, I think suspect in my life and probably still, I didn’t know why it was. I mean I used to take pictures of couples because I was trying to understand if I photographed them, maybe I could see what love was you know, how couples work, how the dynamic of a what a couple was always supposed to be. And I think that I was working with the textbook idea of what love was or what relationships were and I think if I’d been in school being graded on it, I would have failed because I never really got it. I didn’t understand it and the few occasions, that I have been loved, have been, not to sound sad or pity, but they were like break out city you know. I was going out with people that were just, I mean, in terms of love, I was out of their league because I didn’t understand the rules of the game, you know.

And you know, I went out with women that there were like, you know, I went out with very straight women, they were, like, when you met them, they were like tightly wrapped and everything was together and they were all cool, and calm, and collected, and as soon as there was a crisis, it was like straight out of an Alfred Hitchcock movie: there was like this meltdown, and that they slowly just come unglued, and then become psycho killers – and I knew a couple of those who actually did kill people – I had a good friend at once said to me never go to bed with a woman it’s got more troubles than you do. So I mean, I never really took that advice the more troubles they had I seem to be attracted. But then after you’ve been beaten up a few times and you’re like on your last legs, and you’re giving up on it all of a sudden you trip over it and you go “wow this is love” and you meet someone that just reaches inside of you and pulls out all of whatever goodness that you are in denial of.

They seem to bring out of you and make you want to be a better person, make you want to get up every day and say “I love this person I’m going to be a good person for them” but because you haven’t had the proper training you still are not quite sure how you go about doing that you know. “Should I posture in front of the mirror be this kind of bad ass or should I be this kind of you know sensitive soul?”. And in the end you just have to be you and you know if somebody really loves you they take you as you are and you don’t have to do cartwheels across the floor or a balancing act on a tape rope wire.

So it took a long time and unfortunately when it finally did come a knocking you know that great, great line is like you know I’m just waiting for the person to find the right door, you know, I’m behind the door I’m waiting for them to come knocking. And finally when they came in knocking weren’t really ready for it or you were over ready for it or whatever, but there it was staring you in the facing you have to kind of confront it and it’s a scary experience to give your heart. You know the old Frank Sinatra song, you know evening is going well and everything is going great and then you go and do something and say something stupid “I love you”. That’s like all the roll of the dice or the moment of truth. And at least I can say before I meet my maker whether it be the devil or the God, that I’ve finally got to see what it was but the joke is on me beacuse I finally discovered I entered a phase of my life where I couldn’t do anything about it I could just accept it or let it wash over me but I couldn’t really respond to it, or give back to it, or nurture it, or water it.

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