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In defense of Valentine’s Day

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It has already begun. The red- and pink-packaged candy in the aisles of CVS, the “you’re the best thing that ever happened to me” cards taking up more space than usual at Hallmark, the prix fixe menus featuring the second-cheapest bottle of champagne. Yep, Valentine’s Day is a mere three days away. And, while I can understand some of the venom aimed at what is most certainly the most Hallmark of Hallmark holidays, I have to protest all these protestations.

“But shouldn’t we show our love all year?” terrible and not-quite-as-terrible boyfriends of the past have asked me. My response was always (and has continued to be, now that I am a married lady), that, sure, it would be wonderful to arrive home every day to a nice little flower arrangement, a thoughtful gift, and some extra quality time…that is not what happens. To anyone. It’s not that I feel unloved during the other 364 days of the year– far from it! But why deny a day that’s dedicated especially to lovin’? For the record, this year we’ll be in Disneyland on Valentine’s Day, and having dinner at the Napa Rose. A fun day together, and an awesome dinner– I will be a happy girl.

P.S. Re: “Singles Awareness Day” vs. the most…um…vomitrocious (yeah, let’s make that a word) couples. I know that I’m going to see both ends of the spectrum in my Facebook News Feed, so know this, friends: I’ve learned that the easiest way not to be homicidal about Facebook is to block the shit out of my most annoying friends. When I don’t have to read it, it’s like it’s not even there. Ahhh. Calm sigh. All better now.

P.P.S. Here’s a weird, only slightly Valentine-y video that made me laugh hysterically. (Seriously, watch it. It’s totally weird.) You’re welcome.


The Meet-iversary

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Four years ago today, I met this dude in a restaurant for a first date that would end up lasting eight hours. And I didn’t even kiss him! Good thing he still decided to marry me.

Sloppy Firsts

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When Megan mentioned she was going on her fabulous Trip of Northern Aggression, the words of Michael Scott immediately sprang to mind. “Abraham Lincoln once said, ‘If you are racist, I will attack you with the North.’” I could really go for some colored greens right about now…

(Side note: We’ve come a long and weird way since the Diversity Day episode of The Office. I loved last night’s bizarro episode, but that never would have flown two or three seasons ago.)

(Side note to self: Gretchen, you don’t just launch into a critique of your favorite show without properly introducing yourself!)

Oh hai! I’m Gretchen, a.k.a. Gretch-a-sketch if ya nasty. I’m your Friday Fill-in!

Traditionally, I make top three lists. Without further ado, here are the Top Three: Reasons I Adore Megan…

1. Hello, cute shoes! The pictures speak for themselves.

2. She makes me laugh and I’m always secretly thrilled when people that make me laugh are willing to be my friend, too.

3. She’s super sarcastic, but also incredibly sweet to send me books when I need good reads.

Confession time: I’m a virgin guest poster…this is my first time. I think it’s only appropriate to tell you all (‘scuse me, y’all) about another first time. (Disclaimer: I’m really, really Mormon. Therefore, this is going to be a very PG-rated story, but in the good Pixar-way, not in the lame Disney-sequel-way.)

I’m talking about the huge event in every young LDS girl’s life—leaving the VL club.

It was October of my senior year of high school. (Back story: Six months earlier, I met a boy we’ll call Denny. We met at a…you guessed it…Denny’s in SoCal during band tour. I was an orch dork, he was 100% band geek.) I asked him to the Dogpatch Dance (my school’s version of Sadie Hawkins) and had a decent enough time. It was a reaaaaaalllly long date, so by the end of the night I was pretty much sick of him and ready to go home. Naturally, we went out again three weeks later and held hands.

There was a whole lot of convoluted high school drama for the next few months. I won’t bore you with the details, we’ve all been there. ANYHOW, exactly six months to the day after the dance, we were hanging out with some friends. It included a movie and Jamba Juice. At Jamba, Denny and I split a Raspberry Lime Sublime and shared the same straw.

Holy cow, this was a big deal to me at the time. You see, we’d been side-stepping around the kissing issue for a good two months or so. We were both chicken, so nothing transpired. I thought for sure he’d take the initiative during Band Tour 2: Electric Boogaloo, but NO.

But this night, I knew for sure something was going to happen. There was a long walk around the park and a longer walk up to the doorstep (at least, it felt like it). I’d be make this clear right away—the doorstep scene? Was about thirty minutes long. About ninety-nine point seven percent of that was spent either a) talking about the fact that we should just get the kissing thing over with already or b) in silence, awkwardly hugging. Add this to the facts that the whole neighborhood could watch if they felt so inclined and that my parents could possibly hear the whole thing from the bedroom window equals one very surreal experience.

Basically, our conversation went something like this:
G: Thanks! I had a great time tonight.
D: Hey, me too! So…uh, you know that thing I’ve been wanting to do for a while? Do you think we should? [The word “kiss” was never said the entire night.]
G: I dunno…do you?
D: Yeah, but I mean, how…um…how do we go about this?
G: I don’t know! You’re the guy in this relationship.
D: Well, you’re the brains!
G: sighs Okay, well, um, maybe we just…I don’t know, are you sure you want to?
D: sighs Yes, I’m sure.
G: Okay then.

This is where I nervously lick my lips and pull away from the hug to face him. Then I freak out and go back into the hug stage. We repeat this about twenty times, which is NOT an overestimatation.

Finally, it gets to the point where I know I have to just get it over with or I’d go inside and nothing would ever happen. So, I face him and begin to slo-o-o-o-wly lean in. (The whole 90-10 Hitch rule wouldn’t come out for another year or so. This was definitely a 50-50 effort.) Once our mouths meet, there was a slight attacking on my part, because I want a good first kiss, dangit! However, I think his train of thought went, “Choo-choo! All aboard for the Awkward Express! Next stop: Gymclassville. Your conductor would also like to note that apparently just touching lips is enough to count for a first kiss.” Holy miscommunication, Batman! I stop, because he isn’t kissing me back. Not good. There’s a fair amount of tense laughter and then he has the gall to suggest we try it again! Oh yeah, he also adds, “My way or your way?”

Me: what the huh? Your way, I guess.

This time goes slightly better, but it’s still just a peck.

Repeat AGAIN.

Curfew rolls around and I start to go in to my house. He stops me and asks me if he can kiss me goodnight. It’s short, but really quite sweet. I step inside, check in with my mom, and get ready for bed. I look in the mirror and I believe my exact thought was, “Wow. That was weird and not really very fun. What’s the big fuss?”

The kissing definitely improved, although things didn’t work out with Denny in the long run. And there you have it, internet. I’ve told that story a million times over to roomies and friends, but never seen it all written out like that. Feel free to cringe, since I know I did.

Come and say hi!