Valentine’s Day. A name that evokes images of love, romance, moonlight, unrealistic financial burdens, emotional blackmail, and horrific gangland massacres. Ah, love!
This pink and fluffy holiday began as the ancient pagan festival of Lupercalia where Roman priests would sacrifice a goat (for fertility) and a dog (because it wouldn’t stop barking). The boys of the village would then slice up the goat’s hide and run through the streets, gently slapping women and crops with the bloody strips to improve the fertility of both or because by that point in the festival they really couldn’t tell the difference.
But even then, the anguish inherent in Valentine’s Day was exposed. The women of the village complained that the boys didn’t hit them with the right bloody goat strips, or that they hit that witch Lucia Bustinia way harder than they hit her and why did they like Lucia better, was she prettier? The boys were too exhausted to answer, having been up all night frantically searching the marketplace for the last few goat strips left because they waited until the last minute.
Today the holiday has become a time to celebrate the power of your love as measured in extravagant gifts. But, despite the demands of society and Hallmark, you shouldn’t feel obligated to shower your lady with chocolate-covered diamonds just to fulfill some sort of sex life maintenance fee. What she really wants is to know that you love her beyond life itself, or are willing to fake it. Here are some suggestions.
Serenade her. Actual musical ability isn’t required; what’s needed here is passion, devotion, and the ability to jump a fence carrying a guitar in case the police get called. If she lives in an apartment higher than the second floor you may need to choose a louder instrument with which to express your love, such as an air horn. (BLAAAT! “YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE!” BLAAAT! “MY ONLY SUNSHINE!”)
Hire an investigator to get the names of all of her previous boyfriends and invite them over so she can see how much better off she is with you. Won’t she be surprised to see the guy whose abusive behavior in junior high caused her to start cutting herself, or the drunken one-night hookup from Fresno she thought no one knew about?
Better yet, invite all of your old girlfriends to show how over them you are and to help reassure her that you’re much happier now even if those other women might be more “beautiful” or “smart” or “sexually advantaged.”
Valentine’s Day is all about making her feel desired, loved, appreciated. Take the day off from work, put on a disguise, and stalk her.
For her, half the fun of the holiday is bragging to her girlfriends about what a cool, sexy, romantic man she has. You can help by sleeping with all of them so they’ll know for certain exactly how lucky she is. Make sure they know that your lady can get what they’re getting any time she wants.
By the same token you should be sure to look your best around her at all times. Take the money you would have wasted on flowers or dancing and buy yourself some new clothes instead, to give her the absolute best-looking date she can have. You’ll need some new golf clubs, too, and maybe an iPod. But it’s all for her.
Give her something unexpected that speaks of your love and eternal devotion, like a suicide pact.
Take her to a fancy restaurant and right there, in front of the other diners, get down on one knee and ask her to marry you. Every girlfriend, especially yours, dreams of this magical moment and you owe it to her to make it as dramatic and romantic as possible. You can even add that extra sense of excitement and urgency the same way car dealers and realtors do, by suggesting she might not be the only one interested. (“You wanna hurry this up? I’ve got someone waiting in the car.”) Just make sure the ring is three sizes too small so you’ll have to take it back “to be resized” and can later claim it was a hallucination brought on by bad shrimp.
The point is that it’s not expensive gifts she really wants, no matter what she says. She wants attention and affection, which, as it turns out, is amazingly cheap.
And if that doesn’t work, sometimes the old-fashioned ways are best: break out the bloody goat strips. Ah, love!