As a public service to men everywhere, I am hereby issuing the following announcement:
If you are married, have a girlfriend or, for reasons of your own, feel a need to continue the charade of dating a Swedish airline stewardess who is always out of town, it’s time to start planning something romantic. For those of you in the latter category, this will be easy since the only person you have to worry about pleasing is yourself.
And, yes — I plan to clarify that last statement immediately.
What I mean is that every male currently in a relationship with an actual living female could, by Feb. 15, all be dating the same fictitious Swedish airline stewardess should they fail to impress their Valentines. As a result, men everywhere are panicking because we know that impressing the women in our lives isn’t easy. We realize that you are complicated creatures who need more than a physical connection when it comes to romance; you also need an emotional outlet in order to feel satisfied.
We, on the other hand, just need an outlet located near the television.
Metaphorically speaking, even if romance was a TV channel, and suddenly every station on the planet went out except for that one, it still wouldn’t make any difference because, let’s face it —
Men would curl up in a fetal position and require regular changing.
It’s not that we don’t want to be romantic. We just have a hard time expressing our emotions and allowing ourselves to become THAT vulnerable again so soon after the Super Bowl.
However, we realize how important this is and will try anyway because we care.
Sure — fear does play a small part, but mostly it’s because we care.
For this reason, I’d like to offer a few romantic tips that men can use this Valentine’s Day.
Tip number one is to bring flowers to your Valentine. This seems pretty obvious. However, I should point out that, even if you don’t remember them until Feb. 15, the gesture will still be appreciated by your Valentine since she can just bring them to your funeral.
Tip number two is to cook her a romantic dinner. That said, keep in mind that dinner by candlelight is always romantic; dinner by flaming-chicken light, however, is not. So if you can’t cook, don’t. Sure, she may be impressed with your take-charge attitude as you “stop, drop and roll” with a blazing chicken thigh, but more than likely the mood will fade once you both realize…
Well — you’re on the floor with a flaming chicken.
And my final tip: If you plan a surprise getaway in which you whisk your Valentine away for the weekend, make sure you carefully pack everything she will need. Because no matter how nice the hotel is, no matter how incredible the view, and no matter how wonderful dinner and dancing might be, none of it will matter if you forget to pack any actual clothing.
To ensure you remember everything, I have developed the following fool-proof packing technique: Dump everything from the closet, dresser and bathroom into Hefty bags, even of some of the items appear to be components to the Mars Rover.
She will appreciate the gesture.
But feel free to leave out the flaming chicken thigh.
(You can write to Ned Hickson at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at the Siuslaw News at P.O. Box 10, Florence, OR. 97439)