To All the Valentines I’ve Had Before

I won't lie to you: my Valentine's Day track record has not been sweet. I mean, technically yes, it's been very sweet because I purchase obscene amounts of candy and chocolate in and around February 14. But in the conventional sense of the word? Absolutely not. One year, I went to a dance with the best friend of a guy I liked, and then the guy I liked ended up ditching my best friend (a very long story) for a girl who's best friends with the person he's married to. 

I mean, I wish them the best, but I sat in the floor in an ankle-length skirt and moped about my sad, teen heart.

But there have been others. There have been Valentine's Day more awkward, more un-exciting, and so un-special that they are guaranteed to make yours feel the opposite of everything I just said. And for that reason exactly, here they are. Feel better about your own lives — these are the Valentine's Days I've had before.

1. 1996 (10)
The year a boy I liked (named Luke, FYI) hooked me up with the sweetest Spiderman card of all time: Doc Oc, with the caption "I can't wait to get my arms around you." I was stoked. This was it. Luke was going to be the guy I married because this is how marriage and engagements worked. "I liked your card," I remember saying to Luke, super-coyly the next day. "Oh yeah my Mom just picked them" he said, dismissing me over his pudding cup.

I sleep well every night knowing I kicked his ass at Pogs and marbles.

2. 1997 (11)
Remember Star Wars' 20th anniversary? I do. I do because I loved Star Wars so much that my parents got me the commemorative book for Valentine's Day, and I was so excited to read it, I almost didn't go to my friend's 13th birthday party at Pizza Hut. But I did. I did go. I went, then realized I was going to my miss my Mom at the sleepover afterwards and went to the Pizza Hut bathroom and cried. (See also: the title of my memoir) I lied and said I was sick, but my friend's Mom knew my game and made me stay. Which was fine: we watched A Very Brady Sequel (#SureJan), and I went to a hockey game the next day. But I cried in a Pizza Hut bathroom on Valentine's Day and that's not even my worst pizza-related tale.

3. 2005 (19)
I went for heart-shaped 'za with my best friend at Boston Pizza, only to learn I was lactose intolerant on every level imaginable. Lest we forget.

4. 2002 (16)
We don't always have reasons for what we do. But this year in particular, in an attempt to be #SoSexy for the Valentine's Day dance, I wore a bathing suit top, a tank top over it, and a short skirt with flip-flops — because the dance was "semi formal" and I was "skater" and to me, that meant . . . what I just described. For the record, I also had a Roxy bag that I wore across myself diagonally, and, deep down in my heart thought, "My friend's boyfriend TOTALLY thinks I'm a babe right now." (He didn't.) (But yes: when they broke up, he and I totally made out a bunch.) What's tragic about this isn't so much what I wore, but what I inflicted upon others by wearing what I just described. A bathing suit top. In February. For no reason. See also: dyed blonde hair in a DIY bob. This is what happens when you aspire to dressing like Kate Bosworth in Blue Crush when you live in Ontario. So to everyone whose Valentine's Day I ruined back in 2002: I'm sorry. And I hope you include this in your own Worst V-Day round-ups.

How dare you, Kate Bosworth.


Tags: Anne T. Donahue, bad Valentine's Day, romance, Valentine's, valentine's day

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