Men: time is runing out if you want to avoid being a Love Dunce

As a public service to men everywhere, I am hereby issuing the following announcement:

Love Dunce Valentine’s Day is this FRIDAY!

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.

Men, 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 thought it would be a good idea for us men to stick together and, through the power of the Internet, call upon the romantic wisdom of men from throughout the world — and hopefully come up with at least ONE good idea.

To do this, I established a special chat room designed to gather helpful tips from some of the world’s most romantic men. What follows is a direct transcript taken from that 30-minute endeavor.

Me: Hello? Hello? Anybody?

I’m sad to say the only hit my chat room got came from someone called “Luvmonkey,” who wanted to chat about things that had absolutely nothing to do with monkeys. This left one final option, which was to race across the Internet, where I discovered some interesting Valentines traditions from other countries that — by comparison — could make even the most romantically challenged man appear to be…

Well — less of a love dunce, anyway.

First stop: France.

I started here because, as everyone knows, the French are the world’s greatest lovers, a fact that was confirmed by a random poll of more than 300,000 Frenchmen. According to tradition, it was customary for the French to hold a drawing involving young unmarried people, who would go into houses facing each other on the street. They would then call out from window to window, chanting: Vous aux tre mon ami, which, roughly translated, means: My bidet is clogged.

Following this tender courtship, the occupants from both houses would then emerge and, in a fit of uncontrollable passion, secretly confess the name of a good plumber.

I also tried Italy, which customarily had young people in Rome gather at a large, ornamental garden to hear music and poetry — after which they would stroll off in enamored pairs to look for broken sprinkler heads. This custom ended recently when it was discovered that the garden had no irrigation system, leaving Italians to ponder what its young people have been DOING all this time?!?

Okay, to summarize what we know so far: we’re in big trouble, and neither the French or Italians are going to help us.

So, I’d like to personally 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. Which is easy to overlook when you are still angry at the French and Italians.

To ensure you remember everything, I have developed the following fool-proof packing technique that goes like this:

Step one: Dump everything from the closet, dresser and bathroom into Hefty bags, even if some of the items appear to be components to the Mars Rover.

That’s it — there is no step two. Trust me, she will appreciate the gesture. Especially if it means avoiding a flaming chicken thigh.

That is, unless you’re dating someone nicknamed Luvmonkey; they seem to be into that sort of thing…

(Ned Hickson is a syndicated columnist with News Media Corporation. His first book, Humor at the Speed of Life, is available from Port Hole Publications, or Barnes & Noble.)

Published by

Ned's Blog

I was a journalist, humor columnist, writer and editor at Siuslaw News for 23 years. The next chapter in my own writer’s journey is helping other writers prepare their manuscript for the road ahead. I'm married to the perfect woman, have four great kids, and a tenuous grip on my sanity...

72 thoughts on “Men: time is runing out if you want to avoid being a Love Dunce”

  1. like to the power of 10.THIS is the most glaring truth I have ever read about the average man, romance and Valentines Day “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.”
    I take comfort in those words…it explains so much…lol

    1. Thanks, Barb! If I can bring men and women closer to understanding each other, then my work is done. Which is why I’m pretty sure I’ll never be out of a job…

  2. i must confess the “stop, drop and roll” caught my eye. This is a critical skill that spans many human activities, not just romantic liaisons. I clearly recall, as the Regional Safety Director of a fuel tanker company, it was my responsibiltiy to teach trainees the safety regulations at each fuel loading terminal. Suncor’s central fuel distribution center in Toronto had a 50 page safety manual that included one page of forbidden activities. At the end it stated that anyone bursting into flames was required to “stop, drop and roll”. Directly under that it elaborated that anyone failing to follow these regulations would be banned from the teminal pemanently. I always taught the new (impressionable) recruits that running across the terminal while on fire was a sure way to get fired. The same applies in relationships. It may seem unimportant in the heat of the moment, but you’ll regret it later.

  3. You know, if I called my hubby a “Love Dunce,” he would see that as a “challenge” or an “invitation” to bring out his luvmonkey. Just sayin’… and he’d “work” that flaming chicken. 🙂

  4. I think I might have to hand in my “female of the species” card, since I’m not really a fan of the whole red-and-pink roses, romantic dinner and a getaway thingy. While I don’t mind flowers, food or traveling, I’d much rather spend time on a go-kart track with my hubs. And no, his name is not Luvmonkey 😉

  5. Ned, you save my life and great advice, even though I sped-read through the whole thing. I will definitely get her new sprinkler heads to replace the broken ones. I am not sure how romantic that is… but if it works for the French AND the Italians, I’m in.

  6. And to help the men, Hallmark or some creative company came up with a concept of Valentine week (7-14 Feb). Imagine what men have to go through, emotionally (phew!) and financially 😉 as women are ‘supposedly’ hard to please.

      1. If you haven’t googled it yet, here is the week-long menu to your rescue:
        February 7, 2014: Rose Day
        February 8, 2014: Propose Day
        February 9, 2014: Chocolate Day
        February 10, 2014: Teddy Day
        February 11, 2014: Promise Day
        February 12, 2014: Hug Day
        February 13, 2014: Kiss Day
        February 14, 2014: Valentine Day

        Its not too late to pamper your wife 🙂 You can still catch up!! 😉

  7. you know I always find Valentines day a bit awkward… because you know the men are expected to buy the women stuff… but then I feel like I should by my snuggles something… but valentines day stuff is all quite unmanly… and then it’s like men never really seem to expect you to get them anything anyway… and then I’m not sure what to do… and all together I feel like this holiday is mocking me…

  8. I don’t know Ned, we shouldn’t completely discount rolling on the floor together with a flaming chicken. Sometimes it doesn’t hurt to have a little help to turn on some heat. Just sayin’…

  9. Ned, I am pretty sure that if you rolled on the floor with a flaming chicken, it would be the most memorable Valentines ever! Perhaps pasta would be easier with a little Italian thrown in & by little Italian, I don’t mean the luvmonkey! “Ti amo” is |I love you in Italian”, I googled it for you…you’re welcome!

  10. It’s really not that complicated… All you have to do is buy us some roses and make sure to give them to us in front of our girlfriends and co-workers. You can thank me later.

    1. I’ll go ahead and thank you now 😉
      But I have to admit, I don’t wait for Valentine’s Day to bring my wife flowers. “Just because” is always a good enough reason.

  11. With your fire fighting background, I have to believe that the “stop, drop, and roll” must hit pretty close to home (perhaps in more ways than one?)
    Hubby and I don’t celebrate V-day. He says it’s not because he doesn’t appreciate the holiday, but because he makes EVERYday Valentine’s day (to be fair, his statement has yet to be vetted by Halmark ). One year he did let me be in charge of V-day. We ate barbeque, played lazer tag and smoked cigars. He asked me to marry him the next day 🙂 (you boys are waaaay easier than us chicks!)

    1. I Love It! And he’s right; I see no reason to wait for a special day to express the love and appreciation I have for my wife. Every day is a good enough reason.

      Cheers to you both — every day 😉

    1. I’m suddenly having flashbacks from Jane Adams Elementary and my brown-paper-sack Valentine bag only half filled with “obligatory” Valentines cards. Behind me, of course, Andy Mungaro had to open his desk to make room for the cards that were spilling onto the floor. Not that I haven’t let that go…

        1. You’re probably right, although it was a valuable life lesson that taught me the importance of learning to drive a car — because without a car, a guy has no chance of running over Andy Mungaro.

  12. ….sigh….

    does this mean I am to expect your usual ….roses and frickn chocolate …..again…

    you know a nice book like …HUMUR AT THE SPEED OF LIFE would be a great change of pace damnit.

      1. Wait, Wait! I’m trying to follow all this: Luvmonkey VD, “French loaf”, and now “hummus”? Hummus, hummus? Is that the plural of “Hummer”?

  13. I just want a nice dinner with my husband and daughter. And flowers. Some perfume would be nice. Maybe a nap later on.

No one is watching, I swear...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s