As a kid growing up in the 90s, I had a dream. Honestly, I did. I had a dream that one day I would find the perfect woman, fall hopelessly in love with her (and charm her into falling hopelessly in love with me—you know, the Real Deal) and live happily ever after.
Obviously all this dreaming displayed a lot of confidence and positivity for an average inhibited weakling like me who, well…grew up! And now that I’m 25 and more honest with myself than I used to be until a few years ago, I have to admit things aren’t looking particularly good. The woman I set out looking for more than a decade ago is still nowhere in sight and I doubt there’d be any serious takers in my current state of being either (I’m sitting cross-legged on my bed, wearing pajamas, laptop on my pillow in front of me, eating Coco Pops and writing an article on the lack of love in my life!) Not unless I get bitten by a mutated spider and grow a six-pack overnight or magically transform into a cool, swaggering young Sean Connery type who’d be intrinsically irresistible to the ladies.
With such a square, one-woman oriented mentality, you’d expect me to be a die-hard romantic who waits eagerly for February 14th every year to vent the romance in me, but no, the bitter truth is I kind of hate Valentine’s Day and its unimaginative, consumerist-oriented and entirely arbitrary, manipulative and shallow interpretation of love. Just the idea of happy couples staring dreamily into each other’s eyes in candle lit restaurants on Valentine’s Day cripples me with jealousy and I’m strongly offended when friends make mushy plans for that one dreadful day and leave me out just because I don’t happen to be going out with someone. If truth be told, I think the day is a brutal reality check for all the singletons out there; a conspiracy created by happy couples everywhere to show us that they’re better than us, if in nothing else, at least in maintaining romantic relationships. And it works! This may sound like a cliché, but it royally pisses me off that there are 364 other days to show how much you love someone, yet they’re ignored like they’re not good enough. Seriously, there are enough problems in our lives already. Who needs stupid head-over-feet couples and heart-carrying teddy-bear manufacturers and soppy greeting card poetry writers to make us feel worse than we already do?
What’s worse this appalling V-Day trend has creeped into our confused & sheltered society over the last few years as well, causing a car-crash of emotions, pressurizing burqa-clad women to sneak out of their houses on the 14th to buy perverse Tweety Bird cards for their phone and chat boyfriends.
What a cynic you must think I am, right? But I have a perfectly valid reason for all this indignation: I’ve never fallen in love. There, I said it! I really don’t get what the fuss is all about. Sure there was a time when all I wanted to know what having a girl to call my own would feel like. If everyone else around me could fall in and out of it at such an alarmingly high rate then why couldn’t I? I wanted to know what it felt like, this love; so revered, so wonderful, but it never really happened. I mean, sure I’ve attracted and built strong, life-long rapports with more than my share of women over the years, just not as “girlfriends”, but merely friends who happen to be girls.
Still, I’ll be honest and admit I do sometimes think something went horribly wrong in God’s office while I was in gestation and He forgot to install in me the cocky, smooth-talking seducer gene that all the girls seem to have a thing for these days. I’m the least fatale of hommes (is that what they’re called?). In fact, I’m pretty sure if there was a completion somewhere, I’d come so last they’d have to create a whole new category especially for me. So now, after a long, futile wait for someone to walk into my life and make my days as blissful as my friends tell me they become once the fat, naked kid with a bow & arrow strikes, I’ll for once go easy on myself and look back, sigh a sigh of relief and smile the triumphant smile—because I couldn’t thank God enough if I sacrificed ten black goats for dragging me through teen age and my early twenties without falling in this thing we as deluded youths mistakenly learn to call love. I mean, I’ve led a pretty fulfilling life without it so far, so what’s the problem? Why do I have to feel inadequate just because I don’t have a girlfriend to snuggle with on the couch on Valentine’s Day? Maybe one day the right woman will find me and show me what I’ve been missing. Until then, I refuse to be just another besotted boy toppling for women like a brain-dead domino. No sir, that simply isn’t my style. Anymore, that is.