Valentine’s Day is huge. It’s huge in the sense that it’s guaranteed to have some sort of an effect on you, but it won’t always affect you the same way year after year.
For instance, it’s nothing like St. Patrick’s Day, a holiday that’s focused on inappropriate pinching, Jameson shots, and the mass consumption of corn beef and cabbage. When the next year rolls around, the tradition remains the same except with the possible addition of the blacked out “kiss me, I’m Irish!” ginger ending up in bed next to you. Same goes for Cinco de Mayo, except substitute tequila, al pastor tacos, and a white boy sporting a stick on mustache. Point being, these Americanized holidays are built off reckless fun solely dependent on good food, alcohol, and a side of cultural appropriation.
Valentine’s Day is different. Universally, Valentine ’s Day is a day that highlights and focuses on romantic relationships ONLY. What do you need in order to celebrate Valentine’s Day? Ding, ding , ding… a romantic partner. What do most of us actually have every time Valentine ’s Day rolls around? Ding, ding, ding… pizza delivery, Pretty Woman on repeat, and a carton of ice cream to boost our incredibly low levels of serotonin.
But, it doesn’t always have to be this way. There are many other types of Valentine’s Day possibilities. In fact, the options are endless and it’s really up to you to decide who you’d like to be come dooms day:
- The single girl bar hopping with a fresh new blowout, crisp manicure, and a choker necklace to signify to her prey that she’s literally up for anything.
- The long term relationship girl who’s impatiently waiting for her Valentine’s Day engagement so she can finally submit her long overdue romance novel to “How He Asked”, because she’s literally the last one of her friends that hasn’t been published.
- The group of feminist chicks, single and taken, who’ve come together to bash the patriarchy and revolt against this consumer-based for-profit holiday, all while enjoying Olive Garden’s all-you-can-eat pasta buffet because they literally will NEVER give up carbs.
- The girl who’s in a relationship but is guaranteed to be absolutely miserable and disappointed come Valentine’s Day because her expectations are so high and her boyfriend can literally never do anything right.
- The Anti-Valentine’s Day girl who’s currently suffering from a recent break up and spends her night setting fire to all his remaining belongings, while watching The Craft, and slowing pricking that beloved voodoo doll over, and over, and over, and over again; ultimately calling him 50 times throughout the night because she literally cannot live without him.
- The girl who’s currently in the honeymoon stage of a brand new relationship and will love anything and everything her new boo will do, because she’s literally just SO happy right now.
I have no shame in admitting that I’ve literally been every single one of those girls EXCEPT the “How He Asked” engagement girl because I haven’t quite learned how to nail down a guy long enough to even joke about marrying me. But, out of all my Valentine’s Day years and the variety of stages I’ve gone through, there’s one that has definitely been the most memorable and one I shall never forget. My honeymoon stage Valentine’s Day! Here’s the story:
I was 20 years old and recently started dating this mysterious guy who’d always been part of my friend group, but slid under the radar with his quiet and awkward aura. The day I noticed him, he was sitting on the steps of his stoop with long shaggy unwashed hair and a one inch handmade hemp necklace wrapped around his neck. He had a sparkle of freckles across his cheeks and piercing eyes that revealed so much and so little, all at the same time. He was so intriguing and so different; I was immediately hooked.
When February rolled around, I really had no expectations for Valentine’s Day. He was a very “anti-consumer” type of guy and didn’t believe in following the trends. But, to my surprise, he had a few unique tricks up his sleeve. He asked me to meet him at his apartment and then our Valentine’s Day surprise would begin. When I arrived at his place, I walked inside the house and was immediately met with a very strange and foreign smell. It was a smell I wasn’t quite familiar with, but if I had to throw out an imaginative guess, I’d say it was a scent similar to deep fried Loch Ness Monster. I looked at him with big bug eyes, scaled the kitchen for evidence of the scent, but all I could see was his smiling face and a picnic basket filled with what I assumed was the legendary sea creature I was about to eat.
Off we went to Golden Gate Park, picnic basket in hand and love in the air. We found ourselves a grassy patch among some Eucalyptus trees right next to my favorite family of inbred bison that rarely moved and mainly looked like gigantic rocks resting among a gated field. We threw out our Mexican poncho blanket and began our romantic Valentine’s Day lunch with a glass of red wine. As the mood set in, the time had come for him to reveal the contents of the mystery basket. He was so excited and I knew I had to put on a smile and tap in the “mind over matter” mentality as I prepared to ingest something I knew wasn’t going to be my typical go-to macaroni and cheese.
He opened the basket and revealed his award winning, never before cooked, alligator meat he somehow discovered in a Chinatown market in San Francisco, California. He paired it with a side of grapes, a raw bell pepper, a beautiful red rose, and some itty-bitty diamond earrings. I was completely enamored. We tore in to the alligator meat and were surprised to find it tasted a lot like chicken but had the texture of beef jerky; because, well, he cooked it himself in his kitchen. It was weird, it was interesting, but overall – it was special.
Unfortunately, I’m sad to report the majority of my following Valentine’s were no where near as thoughtful and romantic as the alligator meat date next to the inbred bison. But, part of being a writer is finding solace and humor in the horror of the story. So… by all means readers, laugh with me over my #1 rated worst Valentine’s date thus far in this human existence we call life.
This one’s called…
“Bro’s and Hoes Before ME!”
It was Valentine’s Day night and my boyfriend and I worked together at the same restaurant. In the restaurant industry, requesting holiday’s off just isn’t a thing – so we settled with skipping out on special plans for that year. When our shift came to an end, I’d planned to pick up a bottle of wine and drive us back to the house for a typical movie and pizza night on the couch. Turns out, he had other plans. My boyfriend chose not to spend Valentine’s night with his girlfriend of two years so he could take his newly single friend out to the clubs to meet chicks. Hurt and angry, I stormed home insisting on enjoying my Valentine’s night as planned. I guzzled back wine and ate my sadness away with pizza delivery while browsing movies to rent on demand. “Ahhh, Perks of Being a Wallflower… this looks like it could be cute and uplifting!” WRONG. I spent the next 90 minutes watching a movie about depression and love struck teens with suicidal tendencies.
Like I said, Valentine’s Day is huge because you never know what you’re going to get.
Cheers to the alligator, boo to the Wallflowers.