Even Google is at it. Happy Valentine’s Day indeed! I was never the sort of woman who was sent Valentine cards by men, so I’m glad the boys at Google remembered me. Come to think of it I once had a boy friend who did everything by the book, including Valentine day treats. He’d arrive on the doorstep with red everything, roses, card, trinkets chocolates. Very sweet but I hated it. To me it felt like emotional viagra-unreal and disconnected from that treasure I’ve spent my life searching for. My body detects the slightest schism from authenticity. I used to call it painting by numbers and I remember how much it repelled me.
The thing that surprises me about this is the fact that I was brought up on the The Book of Life/Hollywood version, which is all about acting. Yet a good film doesn’t feel like painting by numbers. Creativity is the heart of cinema. Watching a good film is much like cleaning windows-afterwards I get a better view.
I’ve lived my life from an internal script that I make up as I go along and most of my leading men have been fantastic. Literally. Take Cary Grant for example. Now there’s a man who can strut a suit. Just watch him move about in North by Northwest, getting off and on trains without so much as a wash bag (or a ticket), yet he manages to stay neat and tidy and together through plot twists and turns, largely because of those twists and turns-he even gets fresh clothes delivered to his room before the film’s climax on Mount Rushmore. How cool is that! He always looks immaculate-and he kisses the same way. From the inside out. I like that in a man. Towards the end of the film you see him with just a towel wrapped around his waist and you know why his suits look so good. When I was young I thought his kisses very tame. Now I revisit them with delight. They are confident and slow and always backed by wit. Talk has always been my favourite part of foreplay.
So this morning I am not sorry to be watching from the sidelines as the red roses and garage flowers get bought and dutifully delivered. The sun is shining and eternity sits around me purring like a cat. I gather my pail and mop, my dusters , sponges and step ladder and I clean my windows and place daffodils outside my door.
And while I do this I think about couples meeting and going for expensive meals together tonight, locked in their delight. The memories of being a couple are a lot more colourful than the experience, to be sure. I am alone this Valentine’s Day and I’m content with that. But oh how I miss the kissing!