I was not intending on posting about Valentine’s Day at all, not before, not after, not never. I don’t really care about the day. I try to live so that the people that I love know I love them and I certainly am blessed to feel loved every day. So there’s that.
But then, I lived my life today and there was too much to say, so now I’m posting.
First, at work, we recently had an event in which we were passing out printed material to educate youth and young adults about HIV/AIDS and there was a pile left on my desk. One of the front cover headlines of the magazine-style pamphlet read “Media and Sex: Uncovering the Facts”, but from my angle and because of the font choice, I saw “Media and Sex: Uncovering the Farts”. Just so you know, I have the sense of humor of an 11-year-old boy. I had to stifle my laughter because I share an office. I quickly excused myself, took my phone to the bathroom and texted all of my siblings with this recounted story and a “Happy Valentine’s Day!”, laughing to myself the entire time.
My youngest brother responded, “You are crazy! Happy Valentine’s Day to you toot!”
I love that they get me.
Second, I spent a lovely evening and possibly my best Valentine’s Day with one of my roommates to celebrate an old friend of her’s birthday. There is this theater in Chicago where they show triple features for $5 with a bar in the back of the theater and in the lobby, a binder full of all of the menus of local places that deliver. Dreams. Come. True.
We saw The Muppets, which I had seen once before, but it was just as enjoyable the second time around. I walked out of the theater singing the songs and jumping and clicking my heels. Okay, not the clicking heels part, but I was definitely singing: “I’ve got everything that I need right in front of me…” (Italics spell singing). I was feeling empowered.
My roommate and I got on the train, headed home. The train was unusually full for 11:00 on a Tuesday night, so we had to stand in the middle and find the nearest pole to hold onto to keep our balance. At the same time as us, this girl got on with an obscenely large Valentine’s Day balloon and a red velvet cake colored (um, also known as red) Teddy Bear wrapped in cellophane. She stood in front of me and not paying attention, her balloon invaded my space, namely the facial region.
I often have no control over my facial expressions, so I must have made a look that said, “Your balloon is in my face” because she apologized and rearranged herself, her balloon and her suffocating bear. I laughed out a “That’s alright” and as I stood there, I could not stop laughing. We are talking about 4 or 5 minutes of laughing to myself. After years of hearing Valentine’s Day diatribes, from single women characters in sitcoms and romantic comedies, from friends, from people who refer to the day as “Singles Awareness Day”, after the many times I had heard them talk about couples shoving their happiness right in their single face, here I was, on this train after a wonderfully fun Valentine’s Day, having someone else’s love shoved in my face, literally. I couldn’t have written it myself.
Before too long I was at home, in my pajamas reflecting on my day and still laughing. And here is what I concluded:
That girl can have all of the Mylar balloons ever made, all of the cellophane and all of the Teddy Bears. I really don’t want any of that. Just leave me with my sense of humor and the people I love.
La la la… Happy Wednesday!
“Everything is great everything is grand, I’ve got the whole wide world in the palm of my hand.”
–Walter and Gary, The Muppets