Merrill » albatross

My pushy manipulative unbalanced Valentine

Posted February 11th, 2011
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When it comes to love,  seems to me that no creature on the face of the earth is as generally clueless about what to do as the human being.  Witness this  clip of two albatrosses in love. ( spoiler alert: Albatross porn. Parental guidance advised.) Both members of the lovely couple  were clearly born fully loaded with detailed instructional software that explained to them how they should perform this incredibly appealing highly effective mating ritual . I personally find it so moving and convincing that I would join their species happily if only it were an option.

And  I mention all this because it is almost that most potentially nightmarish repository of dashed hopes : Valentines Day.  Not even New Years Eve has the ability to cause its celebrants as much spiritual  disappointment. More often than not, Valentines Day seems like more of a trap than a holiday at all.  Its bad enough that we  human beings apparently lost all track of whatever instincts we may have  had  with regard to love during the dawn of civilization. (That is, assuming we ever  had them to begin with.) But even if the Neanderthals did at one time have some kind of a behavioral clue,  its been so long buried in  centuries of incomprehensible bad advice and awful role models  that its become almost impossible to know where to look for real sanity.

Bad enough that many of our parents screwed  up their own lives and thus taught us badly,   but the media continues banging the gong for the Ashlee Simpson/Pete Wentz paradigm of romantic grandeur. To refresh your memory,  this epic romance started out in 2008 with a highly publicized wedding requiring “10,000 black magic roses from Ecuador, a checkerboard dance floor, red carpets, crystal chandeliers and three-course dinner  catered by Wolfgang Puck.” only to end in a divorce announcement this very week. Another one of those greatest loves the world has ever known, born in pricey romantic details and then up in flames in  two years flat.

I’ve had first dates that lasted longer than that.

I guess what I most dislike about Valentine’s Day  is how its celebratory rules and regulations manage to be both high pressure and  vague at the same time. It seems perfectly constructed to make sure that no one participating ever feels like they’ve not let somebody down.  Great. Perfect. Thank you St. Valentine.   Its not like love and its maintenance didn’t have enough impenetrable labyrinthian details already without throwing a bunch of poorly defined holiday expectations  in to the mix .Great idea. What a perfect addition to an already endlessly Byzantine situation.

And by love, I mean reasonable love.  Every other kind is just too brain bleedy. The goal of love should be simply this: Don’t be INSANE.  If you are insane, please go give your love to someone else.  Really, I won’t feel slighted in the least.  I promise.

In the name of sanity and mental health,  I would advise any Valentines Day reveler  to proceed with caution upon receiving a Valentine’s Day card like any of the following:

Number one: This first Valentine’s Day Card that seems to have been designed for someone who is abusive, yet still  celebratory,  to give to his or her victim.

Note to recipient and/or author of this card: Guess what? How anyone is acting on the outside IS A BIG DEAL. The outside is the part WE CAN SEE!!! If someone is acting all rage filled and creepy on the outside, it pretty much doesn’t matter what they are  doing on the inside. Seriously: Not important!!! Richard Ramirez, ‘The Night Stalker’, who killed thirteen people, got married since he was incarcerated and  continues to have a steady stream of women writing him love letters . These  women  no doubt feel that no matter how he is acting on the outside, there’s something beautiful and touching happening deep inside of him.  WRONG. Probably not true but even if it is:  Not good enough!! No! If someone gives you this card, go in and pack.

Card Number two:

This one seems to have been produced for stalkers and/or Valentines who have OCD.  Yes, yes…I remember how being fixated on someone is supposed to be all passionate and sexually alive. But really: No.  Its not. Its not adorable to spend the day obsessed with someone. Its scary and horrible AND a big waste of time. Creepy. Creepy. Creepy. NEITHER A GIVER NOR AN ACCEPTOR OF THIS SENTIMENT BE.

If I may offer some advice: Try and find someone who has something else on their minds besides you.  Outside interests are good for a relationship! You will both need the subject matter and the additional company!

And the same holds true for the following type of Valentine.

Card Number three:

Here we see a photo of a football player.  So this is a card meant to be either 1) given by a girl to a boy who likes football or 2) by a boy who identifies with the football player but wants to impress the object of his affection. In either case,it is by design completely one sided and narcissistic. For one thing  It totally leaves the other person out of the picture.  Even if it is meant for one gay boy to give another, there’s only very unromantic looking player pictured and he is NOT even the person giving the card so….I’d say that no matter what the age group, sexual preference or demographic sample, there is no reason to have hope for much in the way of  interactive happy moments  with a person who gives you this card.

But lets look on the bright side now.  The good news is that Valentines Day only lasts a few hours.  And this year its on a Monday, which is chock full of built in excuses and limitations for plans.  Meanwhile, if you are still stranded, without any good ideas about what to do to get through it,  now that I have shot down all the card ideas you were secretly planning, go back and watch that albatross video.  It wouldn’t be  hard to learn that whole  routine. The albatrosses don’t have a copyright on it. And really, love doesn’t get too much better than that.