- Me: "Dude, Mark, do you think Liz likes me?"
- Mark: "Probably not, man."
- Me: "Ok..."
Valentine's Day is a mixed bag of emotion for me. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure I'll fully appreciate it one day. Maybe soon. Maybe never. But up 'til now, Valentine's has been a mish-mash of red and pink candy, broken-heartedness, Ninja Turtle Valentines, and candy hearts with oft-too personal impersonal messages. What says "I Love You" better than sugary chalk? Valentine's is a cruel reminder, for some, of their solitary status. Easy example: I have never dated nor been dating anyone during the Valentine's season. Ever. That said, February 14th rolls around and I usually find myself on the couch, nursing a half-empty bottle of Martinelli's, clinging to a box of extra-dark Swiss chocolates, and sniffling through "Breakfast at Tiffany's." It's those nights that I think "No wonder Valentine's gets put in the middle of the shortest, coldest month of the year!" For others, Valentine's is a frantic rush to show their affection in a more
commercial fantastic way than they normally do. Guys often feel big time pressure to show their significant others just how much they really adore them. Trust me--we generally do really adore our significant others. But when that pressure is put on all of us to perform at our best all at the same time, on the same day, doing basically the same stuff, well...we feel like some of the magic is taken away from showing our sweethearts just how sweet they are to us.
And yet, I still harbor hope that for some, maybe the lucky few, Valentine's is a day to soak up the love in their life. To reflect on the love of their life. To sit down with that love, or take that love dancing, or go out with that love for a romantic dinner, and basically just bask in the other person. To revel in Twue Wuv.
Real? I hope so.
With this background in mind, I give you some of my favorite, and most memorable, Valentine's Day Memories:
Second Grade. I had a Crush on Natalie Tucker--first one of my young life. I don't remember why I had a Crush on her exactly, but it seemed like the right thing to do at the time. So, when Valentine's Day rolled around, I declared my undying second grade love for Natalie in the smoothest way I could think of: slipping her not one, but two Leonardo Ninja Turtle Valentines, and an extra candy heart in the envelope that said "I Like You." LEONARDO, people. In my mind, I was the Eight-Year-Old Rico Suave of Bonneville Elementary. 'Nuf said.
How Natalie could have missed the signs, is beyond me...but she did, and it broke my little second grade heart. Later that day, after she made no notice of my Ninja Turtle love, I slipped a note into her desk: "Natalie--I like you. Eric V." She didn't find that note until the end of the school year. When she found it, she laughed. Years later in high school, I was secretly glad when she moved away.
Fifth Grade. New Crush this year, but after the Tucker fiasco of second grade, I still didn't have the confidence to make my move on my new Crush--Liz Maxwell. I had scoped out her interest via her neighbor, Mark Thornton: sweet young girl. To add insult to injury, she went straight from me to another guy she had had her eye on for some time. For some reason, her brother told me that for Valentine's, the guy she left me for called her from a study session and said "Oh, yeah. Almost forgot! Happy Valentine's."
I thought that was just....
This Year. Hasn't happened yet. We'll see what comes. Eh...Really, who am I kidding? No offense to Audrey Hepburn, but I'd love to spend it with someone else.