That's The Way Love Goes: A Valentine's Day for Everyone

In our continuing campaign to stop worrying and learn to love Valentine's Day, we bring you the advice of Carrie Brownstein, reprinted from her NPR blog Monitor Mix, on how to enjoy the holiday no matter what your romantic status.

Valentine's Day is nearly upon us! You've probably been wondering about — perhaps even waiting for — the annual Monitor Mix Valentine's Day post. Fear not: That day has arrived. Two years ago, I doled out advice on the art of the February 14 mix tape. And last year, I helped readers choose their own Valentine's Day musical identity. For 2010, Monitor Mix will help you plan a romantic evening; whether you're married, partnered, suffocating-and-lovin'-it, together-but-lonely or single, I have the perfect night for you.

You: Are in a Threesome

Monogamy is so old-fashioned, it went out of style on Nov. 7, 2009, at 6:34 p.m. That's when your boyfriend told you that the best way he could express his love for you would be by expressing his love for someone else at the same time. Armed with a copy of The Ethical Slut, he told you how jealousy was a rain cloud on his rainbow of love. Not wanting to smudge his rainbow, you agreed to upgrade your relationship to a larger box of crayons. Two days later — it seemed so sudden, but he said he'd just met her at the gym that morning — Jenna arrived.

For Valentine's Day, you'll be dining in, because no restaurant short of Larry Flynt's Hustler Club wants to accommodate a six-legged couple. Split up the food prep three ways (wait, this isn't so bad!), buy two bouquets of flowers (you'll be receiving two, as well!) and dim the lights. Then get ready for romance, tripod-style!

Song picks: De La Soul, "Magic Number." Britney Spears, "3." Stereo Total, "L'Amour a Trois." The Commodores, "Three Times a Lady."



You: Blamed Your iPhone for the Fact That You Forgot Valentine's Day Last Year.

That your partner believed you is a testament to just how crummy the iPhone is. The conversation went like this:

You: Honey, I'm so sorry, my iPhone said it was February 41st.

Her/Him: Only the iPhone could do something like that.

You: I know, isn't that crazy? Apple makes uselessness so beautiful.

Your romantic evening will start off with a ritualized slaughter of your iPhone while your partner looks on. Download the iPhone Ritualized Slaughter app and follow the instructions. Then, on a $40 cellphone, make the first uninterrupted, clear-sounding phone call you've made in years! Call your favorite restaurant, confirm your reservation, and then — without using GPS to navigate the three blocks you have to walk and without checking the weather, even though you're standing outside IN the weather — go to the restaurant. Order a bottle of wine and get dessert. Now that you can no longer do a mobile Facebook update from the table, look your person in the eyes and say something nice for a change.

Song Picks: Kraftwerk, "Computer Love." Roberta Flack, "First Time Ever I Saw Your Face."

Carrie's NPR bosses have asked us to ask you to click through to her blog to read the rest of this post. Especially if:

  • You: Are Single with Dog (SWD), a Status That Transcends Sexuality.
  • You: Are Dating Your Doppelganger a.k.a doppelBANGer

Carrie Brownstein is a writer and musician. She was a member of the critically acclaimed rock band Sleater-Kinney. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, The Believer, Pitchfork, and various book anthologies on music and culture. Her blog, Monitor Mix, deserves a place in your RSS reader.