Political 'side'

I am a rather politicaly-challenged. I don’t understand politics much. I hear the terms ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’ passed around a lot here. I have a vague understanding of the words and I think I am probably liberal. But I don’t understand them enough so…

My question is what does it mean (in plain English) to be a liberal/conservative?

Please try to be neutral when you answer (objective or whatever).

And if someone gives a good answer don’t think “oh well it’s been answered. I don’t need to answer” please do answer. I want to hear from both sides. And no bias. (I know that’s almost contradictory but wherb)

The idea originated during the French Revolution, based on who sat where in meetings of the new gov’t. Those early concepts of left and right have since evolved and been expanded upon to the point where they are almost meaningless, and really serve to contsrain political debate. Here’s some reading I dug up on Google.
Brief, illustrated, and simplistic answer: http://www.self-gov.org/results.shtml#liberal

Wordy, but more more accurate answer: http://www.arationaladvocate.com/areyouliberalorconservativea.html