The Black Box: Alternative Lovin'

Illustration By: Bryant Ju 

Illustration By: Bryant Ju 

By: Miroir Noir 

Ah yes, Valentine’s Day is here and you still haven’t left the couch. Those empty bottles of wine are collecting fruit flies, but that’s ok. Being alone on Valentine’s Day is fun when all of your friends can get together and shake your fists in the air, but this year is different. Somehow, you feel lonelier.

There are currently 7.5 billion people on the planet. No, not all of them know your name or love you but it would be weird if they did. Celebrity life seems filled with more heartbreak than I’d be willing to put up with. Unless you honestly have no friends or family to talk to, there are people out there who care about you. If you still feel like you have no one, that’s ok. You have yourself.  I gave up on the idea that Valentine’s Day has to be about romantic love long ago.

Growing up, my family and I often exchanged gifts of  stuffed animals, heart-shaped candy and other traditional consumerist items on Valentine’s Day. I’d like to share that tradition with anyone willing to listen. It doesn’t have to be about romantic partners, hooking up with Tinder randos or getting wasted by yourself (although that can always be fun.) It doesn’t have to be about holding a lovers’ hand, spending way too much money on a dinner your wallet will regret or buying expensive wine that’ll disappoint your pallet. That two buck chuck at Trader Joe’s will do just fine. I sure as hell don’t want to be at some fancy restaurant trying to eat something I can’t pronounce just to impress the person I’m romantically involved with. If that’s their only sense of validation that I love them, I guess I really don’t.

If you’re single on this joyous, love-filled holiday, go spread that love elsewhere. I adopted my kitten around this time two years ago. Austin Pets Alive is having a special where adoptions are free! If you already have three ornery felines and two dogs that seem to be constantly shedding, then buy some things to donate. They’re always accepting donations, and those furry pals will appreciate your love.

Go tell Mother Nature how much you appreciate her by spending a day outside. If you’re feeling especially romantic, grab a trash bag and some gloves to clean her up. I’m sure she’d love that! Getting some sun is always great for your health and despite it being rainy, being out of the house will do you a world of wonders.

Last but not least, love yourself. If I know anything about the audience who enjoys this awesome fucking magazine, I know  we are all too stressed. We live in a world plagued by political bullshit, miscommunication despite having 500 different social media accounts and drugs meant  to suppress us. Well… unless we are talking about LSD, but we aren’t (for now). Go out and love yourself. Spend some time cleaning your apartment tomorrow because you deserve a clean place. Have a little extra money to spend? Have a spa day. I want to hear bath bombs going off in every tub in Austin because everyone deserves a great soak filled with multicolored happiness. Eat your favorite meal or cook it yourself, adding another dish to your repertoire!

Valentine’s Day should be about all types of love. Let’s break away from the traditional idea of coupling and just make it a love day. I don’t even know you but if you read this far, but I love you! 


Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Illustration By: Dani Muñoz 

Illustration By: Dani Muñoz