The other day, I noticed that Friday the 13th and Valentine's Day happened to fall on consecutive days. Now, I have spent twenty-one of my twenty-two Valentine's Days single, and have developed quite an antipathy for this most artificial of holidays (in the same way that my fellow hell-bound feel on Christmas). The day turned out amazingly, though, despite Hallmark's attempts to make me feel like crap for being single and happy for it.
I spent twelve hours wedged in the U-boat-like space of my restaurant's kitchen, kicking ass and cooking delicious food. After work, I drank several shift beers with my coworkers. Two were married to each other. One had just broken up with his fiancée. One was just as single as I was, and I spent much of it trying not to think about her shapely ass, which I had just noticed. I ran into several friends and overall, had a kick-ass time.
I came home to find my apartment's leasing office had the thoughtfulness to send a little bag of candies to its residents. Drunk and exhausted, I opened the bag. The candies were delicious to my glucose-starved brain. Enclosed with the bounty of sweets was a little poem:
"Roses are Red
Violets are Blue
Happy Valentine's Day from (name of apartment complex)
Don't forget to Renew!"
I laughed out loud. This was the most ridiculous thing I had read in a long while. They had their bases covered: get the couples to renew in their dopamine-besotted jackassery, and get the singles to bitterly stagger down to the leasing office in their tattered Vaseline-stained bathrobes, all to lock themselves into another year-long lease. But the mechanism by which they chose to manipulate the emotions of their residents was the most wicked thing about it: a poem, and one ridden with errors of convention and the most brutal slaughterings of meter I had ever read since I gave up drum circles.
In response, I wrote a real love poem, one truly reflective of the blissful open-armed union of souls that is the sure and inevitable result of love:
"If I were aware of all the things I do which offended you
I promise I will bare my soul, all to you for judicial review
Let there be naught between us save truth and reconciliation
All my deeds, all my thoughts, subject to lengthy adjudication
We'll roam the world, and above us, the Belgian moon'll
Moderate my international war crimes tribunal."
I drank an extra one that night for all my single friends, and promised myself to keep smoking cigarettes on my balcony in my underwear, no matter what any hypothetical future significant others may think. Life is good.