All the reasons why Valentine’s Day is so much better alone
‘Table for one, if you please’
Another 365 days have passed and another Valentine’s Day to be spent in singledom has arrived. But that’s honestly OK, because as if you didn’t already have enough reasons to avoid the consumerist trap that is February 14th like the plague, here’s a shitload more.
For starters, you can openly complain that Valentine’s Day is a consumerist trap, fabricated by restaurants and department stores to con the public out of millions each year, and no one can say otherwise. Everyone you know has to indulge your endless cynicism, because the fact is you’re a sad single person destined to die alone in a damp bedsit in Croydon.
This year, Valentine’s Day is on a Sunday, so you can also shamelessly stay in bed all day and refuse to face the world of sickeningly besotted couples and borderline violent PDAs which lies outside your front door.
What’s more, you’ll be in a bed that you don’t have to share with another warm-blooded, respiring human body – where you have unlimited access to ALL the cold bits. Solitude really is the best.
You could use this time to indulge in a small amount of self pity and read some advice columns (or maybe like, this Tab article) on how to cope with spending Valentine’s alone – but this is completely optional.
There’s no obligation to get dressed, or clean yourself, or shave any of your body parts. And you definitely don’t have to go through the painstaking ordeal of choosing what to wear, learning that you’re two sizes bigger than you initially thought, and discovering that although red is supposedly the colour of love, ALL IT DOES IS MAKE YOU LOOK LIKE A FUCKING BEEF TOMATO. What a time to be alive.
There’s also no need to fret about that extra stone you gained eating Christmas foods, New Year’s foods, Pancake Day foods… all the foods… because there’s absolutely no-one to impress. And you get first dibs on all those leftover family-sized selection boxes.
Ok, if we’re being truthful, maybe they weren’t leftover. Maybe you bought them especially in anticipation of this fateful day. In bulk. From a wholesale store. But either way, those unfathomably addictive mini Malteser thingys are all yours. Come at me, food coma, my body is ready for you.
You can enjoy some well deserved “me-time”, ruthlessly deleting all those romantic mini break/cheese tasting/zorbing experience emails and avoiding hellish shopping centres filled with perplexed, balding, middle aged men – men who are struggling to choose between two almost identical M&S extra-comfort bras for their spouses (“I LIKE THEM BECAUSE THEY SUPPORT ME, SIMON. IT’S MORE THAN YOU’VE EVER DONE, SIMON.)
If Simon makes the wrong decision today, he’s seriously considering moving into the shed. You, on the other hand, have the luxury of being able to save your time, money and sanity from commercial Valentine’s torture. Instead, why not wait to pick up a trolley-full of useless crap that’ll inevitably be half price on February 15th?
Always wanted a novelty heart-shaped lava lamp? Or a two-person sweat shirt? Or a stuffed octopus that says “I’m a sucker for you” when you push his lil’ tentacle? Absolutely every supermarket ever has you covered. Even buying flowers for yourself doesn’t have to be socially unacceptable after the Big Day – no one will bat an eyelid if you just grab a bunch of tulips in a completely platonic, orangey-yellow hue. You know, so it looks like you’re keeping things casual, taking it slow, no pressure here.
When you think about it, this whole event is literally an excuse for you, you lonesome bastard, to be both stingy and antisocial. Yay.
Once you’ve got over the realisation that you peaked in primary school, you can stop wallowing and take a romantic stroll. With yourself. Alone. Just you and your probably-mildly-depressive-single-person thoughts. I mean, it would be more socially acceptable and far less creepy if you could source a dog for this activity, and not create the impression you’re a serial killer – but it’s a great opportunity for a spot of introspection either way.
Really, there’s no reason why single people can’t do everything a couple does on Valentine’s Day. In fact, it’s guaranteed to be 100 per cent better. You can go to the cinema/theatre/mind-numbingly boring exhibition that seemed like a good idea at the time – and you don’t have to explain what’s happening to some “askhole” who’s equally as clueless as you are.
No awkward dates where both parties end up engrossed by their phones (Are they yakking about one another? Playing Candy Crush Jelly Saga? Or lining up their next Tinder date?). No more trying to convince yourself that your date’s banter, and also their breathing, and actually everything about them, doesn’t make you want to send for an Uber after the first 10 minutes.
You can avoid overcrowded, pretentious restaurants where you can’t pronounce a single dish and simply have to point at the “deconstructed pie” and hope for the best, instead devouring the take away you’ve really been craving. “Yes, that half duck, pork dumplings, Kung Po chicken, special fried rice and double prawn crackers is for one…”
You can just chill, on your one. Like an amoeba. And you know what? If you want to watch a cheesily predictable rom-com, in which Amanda Seyfried seems to be playing the same basic bitch she did in 2004 and 2009 and 2013, then no-one can stop you.
Titanic is also an option. Just putting it out there.
If things get really bad, and you end up crying on the bathroom floor three hours after you got out of the shower, you can always invite your single squad round and lament together.
Galentines (or ladentines?) is most definitely a thing and there is no shame in it.
Who knows, maybe this time next year you’ll have to engage in some of the diabolical activities mentioned in this article. And then you’ll look back on Valentine’s ’16 and remember that your single days were the best days of your life.