I took this snap myself in room 201 in the west building of the J.Paul Getty Museum in LA.  It IS lovely, and Mars is obviously not suffering post-coital tristesse.  He seems perfectly satisfied with his sleeping lover.  Notice how modestly Venus is draped even in slumber.

There might be a lesson here for a “New Beginnings” night.  Not that I’m suggesting that this is appropriate prom wear.  And I’m certainly not suggesting that bedding down, even in this luxuriously draped bed, is an after-prom activity to be encouraged.

I wonder if Venus ever had to sit through one of those chastity nights where she was told that men don’t want you to be toast with all the butter licked off by other men.  And they don’t want you to be a rose that’s been passed from one hand to another. Oh yes, and they don’t want you to be chewed gum. I sat through all of the above when I was a young teenager.  I had no idea what the word “petting” meant.

The wind is blowing dust all over this valley and I can’t think. I feel testy.

I didn’t think any of the above thoughts while I was in the museum.  I only thought how nurtured I felt by all the beauty that surrounded me. Not just inside with the paintings and sculpture, but outside with the gardens and waterfalls and the flowering bougainvillea. Sarah, my daughter-in-law, spotted two young lovers on the grass under an umbrella to protect them from the sun.

“I want to be them,” she whispered to me.  She and Sam have two lovely boys under age three.  She carries the smiling baby in a pack on her chest. 

“You’ve already been them,” I said.  “You’re a couple of stages beyond them.”

The baby screamed in the car all the long way back to Balboa.