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The new, improved Valentine's Day.

2004-02-13 - 4:26 p.m.

Before I met J, I’d spent a few consecutive Valentine’s Days unattached. You know what? I loved those Valentine’s Days. I’ve always found Valentines Day to be one of the more artificial and commercial special occasions (I won’t say “holidays” because we don’t even get the day off, dagnabit) and it felt very… zen? centered? grown up? to spend it just as I liked without all the pressure to find a fabulous, original gift / be sexy / spend a ton of money on stuff that was twice what it normally costs.

Valentine’s Day (and I need to find a short form for that other than VD because I’m tired of typing Valentine’s Day over and over; see, there it is again; how about V-Day? Like “victory”? I also now need to end this parenthetical immediately…) as a single person was all about me, me, me. I’d treat my body to a good long gym workout – if it was a yoga night, so much the better – and hot shower or even a bath (!), stop by my favourite French pastry shop for a luscious réligieuse café (kind of like a fat, ball-shaped éclair filled with coffee custard and topped with coffee icing), spiriting it home and having it round out my meal of salad, a tuna-and-relish sandwich, and large glass of my favourite white wine. Hey, can you find a man that would enjoy such a tradition? A man that would content himself with yoga and tuna instead of steak and some hot lovin’ on V-Day? I thought not.

Now that I’m permanently with someone I have to say goodbye to that particular routine and instead we now relish the chance to take a socially-sanctioned break from our busy schedules and spend time together. It’s equally satisfying in a different kind of way and nourishes another part of my soul. We don’t bother fighting the crowds in restaurants and we turn deaf ears to the ads exhorting us to buy cheap perfume or gaudy jewelry, choosing instead to quietly sneak small treats home to savour together. Now that, is my kind of guy. I love how his face lights up over chocolate gelato.

I can always, after all, have a day of yoga and tuna some evening when I’m alone during the summer, when I can have the added bonus of eating outside under the lingering sun.

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