Valentine’s Alternatives for the Terminally Lonely

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Coming this Saturday: the most romantic day of the year! Yeah, right. You're reading this, so we know your pain. We here at Nerve have always looked out for the dateless, so here are our suggestions for beating back the forces of Hallmark. With love and solidarity, The Nerve Staff
1. Accost your shrink. Grab a double session and storm in, guns blazing. (Figuratively, people.) Let it all out: "Why am I alone?" "Why doesn't anyone love me?" "When are you going to fix me?" "Am I completely, utterly fucked?" Trust us: you'll get your money's worth, and not just from watching your doc look seasick in his or her armchair.
2. Follow Liam Neeson's advice and take carriage ride through Central Park — solo. Bring an Evian bottle brimming with Stoli. Keep making loops. Try to make friends with the couples in other carriages. Speak very loudly; slur your words; get sentimental. Invite yourself in, and try to sit between them. Offer them your drink while repeatedly assuring them you don't have "cooties."
3. If you don't live near Central Park, or if you're Alec Baldwin or a member of PETA — repeat same in a romantic restaurant. Wear a nice tie and some Axe Body Spray. Buy Jaeger bombs for couples. Saunter over and take a seat. Remember: no matter how they react, all couples who've been dating over three months have nothing to say to each other, and will secretly be relieved you've joined their table. Really: no matter how they react.
4. Rent some videos: we recommend the triptych of Eraserhead, The Night Porter and Dead Ringers. If it's only four a.m. and you've got popcorn left, add in Mulholland Drive. David Lynch makes everything better.
5. Go for a swim — in a strong, outgoing current. Work out all your frustrations, kicking and crawling as far from shore as possible; the ocean's grip will do the rest. Or paddle out on an inner tube and bring a pin. Your life insurance company will never be the wiser. Remember: no one can see your salty tears if you're already drenched.
6. Move to a country that doesn't celebrate a day designed to make the happy happier and the miserable miserabler. Preferably one where underwear is optional.
7. Okay, Scotland, like most of the world, actually does celebrate Valentine's Day. You may be shit out of luck on that score. Regardless: should any feeble-minded sap wish you a happy Valentine's Day, reply loudly, "Happy S.A.D., my friend! That's right — wishing you a very enjoyable Singles Awareness Day." If you feel the need to laugh maniacally at this point, it's icing on the cake.


8. Give the other orientation a try. Nature or nurture? Perform your own science experiment Saturday night. Remember: it doubles your odds of starting your next, doomed relationship.
9. Join a cult! Takes all the pressure off self-determination. Plus, you'll look great in monochrome and, other than band camp, there's no easier place to get laid.
10. The Valentine's Day iconography is all about the circulatory system, so roll with the theme and donate some blood this Saturday. Your lonely, single-person platelets might help sick-but-totally-in-fucking-love strangers spend the rest of their lives with their soul mates. After you donate until you bleed, drink one beer and smoke one cigarette. Voilà! You're shitfaced! You're your own cheap date!
11. Make sweet, sweet love. To yourself. Try something you've never tried before.
12. Let it all out in the Nerve Dating Confessions. "I am worried that this Saturday being Valentine's Day will lessen my chances of hooking up." Can you relate?
13. Watch old Gossip Girl clips on YouTube. Write down all of Chuck Bass's lines. Use them in a bar. Let us know if it works. Seriously. Don't forget to give something back to the love ecosystem: have a friend videotape you attempting the Bass charm, and put the resulting footage back on YouTube.
14. Compose and stage a multi-act opera detailing your unrequited love for that special someone. If they're impressed, you've won! If not, you're still one of the few people on earth capable of writing the music and libretto of a proper full-length opera. That's not so bad either.

©2009 Nerve.com