Every poet, every artist, every writer needs a woman to pursue. Somebody just outside their grasp but not entirely out of their reach. A possibility - a potentiality. They need somebody to dream about and obsess about and churn up every uncomfortable feeling in the book - love, lust, regret, despair. These are the meat and drink of the artist, and nothing can stir them quite like a woman or a war. War often has a terrible finality to it that really puts a damper on one's artistic output, so in all cases a woman is the preferred option.
Jake's problem wasn't a lack of women in his life. There had been several. His problem was a difficulty in falling in love with them. He could never quite get over the line in terms of love - they all turned into friends he flirted with and took out to dinner and show, maybe some dancing, a few time quite a bit more. But they never quite made it deep into his soul, that secret spot where a man really lives.
Strangely enough, this is what was running through his aching head as he sat on the front stoop, his cheek already beginning to swell, his hair a tangle of odd perpenticularities. He needed to love a woman, to get out of the snooping racket and get a job that didn't involve angry husbands and lovers (well, not as many of them, anyways). Soon enough, his head cleared and he regained his composure and his hat, brushed off his pants, and took a stab at standing up. Too soon. Back on the stoop, arms back, eyes to the clouds and more ruminating on lady loves and his lack thereof.