Well it's Valentine's

Well, it's Valentine's Day. The day for happiness and love and, yes, even friendship. Let's not lose sight of that "friendship" factor, even when you're desperately single like Wolfie and feeling like crap because of it. Even without someone to cuddle with on the couch on a rainy night, you can still feel loved and love others.

I used to be one of those guys, unlucky in love, who spent most holidays lonely and sad. The rest of the week I was also lonely and sad, but to less of a degree. I'm still unlucky in love to some extent, but as I get older I'm starting to realize that doesn't matter too much. Playing the guy who never gets the girl gets old sometimes, but most times it doesn't effect me as much as it does other people in my situation.

Why? Age and wisdom and a couple dozen bad experiences I guess. I think the greatest Valentine's Day I ever had was when I was living in Chicago and Angie and Steph came up to visit. We went to Ed Debevic's, a sex shop, and watched The Big Lebowski and drank White Russians. They took me back to Peoria the next day, hungover and tired, and we got pulled over for speeding but somehow avoided a ticket. That was the best Valentine's Day I can remember, despite being single and despite being incredibly and ridiculously lonely in an enormous city where I had no friends.

Last year was spent completely miserable and fighting, despite living in a city where I belonged. Despite having a girlfriend. It's all relative.

Even with no girlfriend to end phone conversations with "I love you" (although my boyfriend Polk tends to end conversations this way), I don't know if I've ever felt more loved in my life than I do right now. Alan calls me over for French Toast. I see Polk 2 nights in a row, both featuring extended conversation, and we don't run out of stuff to say to each other. Angie will go out of her way to lend me money when I lose my debit card. Jack gets so excited when he knows I'm going to come over to see him. My dad thinks of me before  he thinks of himself when he gets discounts and rebates for hardware stores. This is a great life I have. It's silly to get upset over a day that should be about love and admiration when I have so many people I love and admire. So what if we don't have a "boyfriend/girlfriend" title? So what if we don't sleep together? Does that make them less important, or should I be less happy about things because those things are missing? Not if you ask me.

Let's try to enjoy today, single or not, and concentrate on the good people and the good things in life without spending too much time focusing on the negatives. For that matter, let's try to do that everyday. That's my lecture for today.

I'd also like to mention those awesome cards that everyone used to get in grade school. Remember those? You'd make a box out of a shoebox or out of paper plates and hang it on your desk. Then you'd fill out cartoon Valentine's and put them in everyone else's box. I filled out a couple as "secret admirer" in my day, some as jokes and some real. I always loved getting the ones from the pretty girls in the classroom, and I remember the year I got 3 "secret admirers" Valentines. It didn't take much to get everyone happy and excited and appreciative back then. Why are things so different now? Happy Valentine's Day everyone.