I'm trying to decide what to do on Valentine's day. Even tho I'm currently as single as the Pope on a desert island, and there's not even anyone I'm especially looking to romance, I still think it's a nice gesture to send greetings or presents to some or all of my lovely female friends. (I am male incidentally, probably.)

This, however, poses numerous logistical problems. For one thing, I would have to leave the country to post Claire's, as she knows where I live, and doesn't live here herself. For another thing, the only girl I am sort of interested in (I'm not naming her), I don't know her address (incidentally, how do you tell a girl you've known for 9 years that you might like to get to know her a little better? I'm not that sure to risk saying anything and tearing our group of friends apart, or more likely having her put on the same voice she uses when she's sacking her workers, and tell me I'm being a silly little boy.).

But even allowing for the fact that I could drive to Stirling, 20 miles from my work, to post them, there's the question of what to send to my friends. Cards are horrible, in general, quite apart from the fact that I might get strange looks if I bought more than one of them. Not that I'm too sensitive about what I buy; I've bought albums by Daphne and Celeste, Britney Spears and even B*Witched in the past few years, and I once bought a lipstick from Superdrug to be used as a prop for a film people were making.

I like giving personal gifts, things that are a little bit unusual, but they would probably reveal my personality or identity, which would not do. Anyway, I'm not sure that all of my friends deserve personal gifts. I was going to get Jen a copy of Winesburg, Ohio for her birthday next month, but that's hardly a valentine's book. Hey, we are all eternally alone, doomed to frustrated lives. Run away now! Stargirl is at least pink; that's an idea. Or something funny.

I thought to send Claire flowers at work; that would simultaneously please her and make her turn the colour of pillar boxes, which is the sort of thing I like to do for my friends. Email cards work for people whose postal address I don't know, but i've not investigated their naffness, and they may not work for people using Eudora or web-based mail clients, let alone AOL.

So, I am undecided. Which suggests I will do nothing. Last year, I got a sweet text message from one of my friends, possibly Beth, which is what spurs this whole thing on, because I found it's nice to get a valentine even if you know it's from someone who doesn't really love you. Isn't it?

Unrelated PS: Is there no Starbucks or Costa Coffee in Livingston, UK? I know Starbucks is evil, but at least you have the chance to sit down and drink a potable cup of brown stuff outside the workplace, without visiting the naff coffee place right in the centre of the shopping mall that's packed with old women slurping tea from unbreakable cups on plastic trays, and discussing their medical conditions. I want sophistication, dammit! On the other hand, I've done no work today, so I may well be sacked and never have to visit this accursed town again. Look at me finding the silver lining.