Feb 032004
Authors: Johnathan Kastner

It would feel odd to write about Valentine’s Day more than a

week before, but the stores don’t seem to have a problem putting

candied hearts on shelves almost a full month before so

technically, I’m late. With the store’s obsession with long holiday

periods, it’s a wonder they haven’t picked up on Chanukah. But I


Since inception it’s been a day for couples and happiness and

love and puppies and oppression. That’s right, oppression. The

minority of happy couples oppressing the majority of unhappy

couples and singles, with chains of love and whips of chocolates.

While Valentine’s Day will always be the crowning glory of couples,

there are ways to be a single and not end up choking on your own


For some reason Valentine’s Day gives couples extra license for

PDA, or personal digital assistant or more accurately, public

displays of affection. Like secondhand smoke or guns, these public

displays are thoughtless ways to endanger everyone’s health and

happiness. As a single in a public place, you’re likely to

encounter this, and you will need to be prepared.

Of course, you could just not look, but that’s accepting your

chains. The best legal option to get rid of the PDA is through

passive resistance and a bag of chips. Get as close as you can

without actually touching the couple and loudly crunch chips. It’s

best if you look around as if lost between chips, to convey an aura

of innocence. Occasionally sneeze, spraying chip particles as close

as you dare to the PDA. This plan is almost a surefire kill for a

PDA, and it has the added bonus of getting to eat chips.

But you can encounter PDA on even a normal day. The real danger

of Valentine’s is the persistent decorations hanging off every wall

and dangling from every ceiling, like giant pink spiders of doom.

As inanimate objects, they’re immune to your chip-based attacks, so

you’ll need something new. Fire comes to mind, but again that pesky

“legal” word raises its ugly head.

What you need is to fight fire with fire, without actually using

fire. The key to fighting annoying decorations is to put up your

own decorations. Make them the essence of saccharine, and sweet

enough to make Cupid himself explode in a bloody cloud of pink

smoke. Kittens and baby seals hugging and dancing with rainbow

unicorns would be a start, but to really give your custom

decorations that extra kick, you should use glitter. Everything

should be coated liberally with about a pound of pink and red

glitter, so that people nearby would have glitter clouds migrating

towards them from static.

A perpetual glitter fog should take care of any of the problems

this annual menace presents. But all great insurgences are

pre-emptive, meaning you should be the punk-er, not the punk-ee.

And here you can borrow another great Valentine’s tradition, the

Valentine’s card. Traditionally, an outlet of love and lust. For

you, a strike at the heart, pardon the pun, of V-day, with awful,

poetic Valentine’s cards. Here’s a sample of what I’m talking


Love is great, love is grand,

I’d like to hold your soft smooth hand,

While you, for love, do a keg stand.

This Valentine’s, maybe it won’t have to be the Day of the

Couples after all. Maybe this Valentine’s can be a day of

liberation and joy. If not, just remember this one most important

piece of advice – the day after Valentine’s, chocolate is


Johnathan is a sophomore studying English. His column runs every

other Wednesday.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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