February 14, 2009

The Other Five Love Languages

It's Valentine's Day and that means people everywhere are expressing their love with roses, candy and the exchange of conversation hearts that say "Fax Me." To commemorate the most fun of all the made up holidays, I'll be discussing the other five love languages.

In the book The Five Love Languages, Gary Chapman explains the most common love languages and how they are expressed. The love languages are words of affirmation, quality time, physical touch, acts of service and receiving gifts. But my friends and I have talked and decided that these five don't fully encompass the ways in which people can feel loved. Thus, I have developed a list of the other love languages:

1. Facebook Interaction: Do you write on their wall often enough? Do you tag them in notes? Have you sent them a piece of flair lately? If you're not communicating with them often enough through Facebook, then you're not loving them. And never, ever, ever forget to write back on their wall after they write on your wall. I can't believe you'd even think of doing that.

2. Picking on them: This is pretty much the opposite of words of affirmation--words of insult with a laugh. Don't you feel warm and fuzzy inside already? Have you made fun of the way your friend snorts when they laugh? Last week, when they told you that their favorite television show as a kid was Dallas, did you make fun of them and ask them who shot J.R.? Not teasing them is basically ignoring them and their idiosyncrasies. Don't you love your friend enough to make fun of their abnormally large toes?

3. Lack of physical touch: I have a few friends who do not like to be touched. At all. Most people think the side hug is a pansy's way out of a real hug, but people with this love language think even the side hug is too much. With friends like this, the best way to show the love is to keep the hugs to yourself. And remember: there's a reason couches have cushions. Your space is on your cushion. Don't cross the cushion.

4. Proper movie and television etiquette: This one is important on Valentine's Day. Couples across the land will be spending the day watching sugary-sweet movies or (if she can talk him into it) marathons of bridal shows on cable. So don't even think about talking during these movies or bemoaning the stupidity of women who wait by the phone for a guy who is clearly a jerk. Don't ever voice your predictions for how the movie will end or point out the faults of the dashing and handsome leading man. And it's also a good idea for the ladies to return the favor and abstain from voicing your opinion of Brad Pitt.

5. The gift of silence: I don't really need to hear how you were once in the exact same situation, except not really because it was a llama that ate your money and not a boss that ran over your puppy. Really, your friend just wants you to listen without comment. An occasional "Oh my!" or "No way!" or "What a lily-livered jerk face!" is permissible and even desired. But most of the time they aren't looking for advice--they just want you to listen to their plight.

That's the list I came up with. What would you add to the list of love languages?