Friday, February 14, 2014

Wearing Candy Hearts on my Sleeve

I've always found February to be a peculiar month, bursting with contradiction and paradox. 

Here in Indiana, the worst of winter has usually passed; fluffy snow turned to grimy slush, holiday excitement replaced with general malaise as everyone trudges through daily chores, uninspired and bored, waiting for the sweet release of Spring. Or death, for those mired in seasonal depression.

And in the midst if this melancholy comes hearts and flowers and cards and candy. It's all rather ridiculous. People in luuuuuv don't need to be stabbed with Cupid's arrow to know they're in luuuuuv, and people who aren't in luuuuuv don't need a reminder they're not in luuuuv. It's a load of bullshit wrapped in pink and red, but there was a time this holiday left me giddy with anticipation...

1980(ish) Indianapolis, and I was slap in the middle of that dreaded early-pubescent awkward stage when my pimples were bigger than my boobs. Like every other girl in my class, I had a debilitating crush on a totally self-absorbed and unattainable (for me) boy. I'd mention his name, but I think he's a Facebook friend now so I'll just call him Heartbreaker.

So, back in The Day, I begged and pleaded to get the COOLEST boxed cards for the school Valentines Day exchange.

I'd developed a system for distribution, a hierarchy of worthiness where my favorite classmates received the best cards and the little shits who snapped my (training) bra strap got the dregs. 

I remember sitting at the kitchen table, choosing the very BEST little fold-up card for Heartbreaker. As if that's not pathetic enough, I spent an extraordinary amount of time going through a bag of candy hearts and selecting which ones I'd shove inside the envelope. I needed the perfect words to properly convey the depth of my emotion.

CoolBe Mine
Hot Stuff and 
*gasp* LOVE!

I stuffed Heartbreaker's envelope so full of those candy hearts  I had to use a piece of tape on to keep the flap closed.

The big day arrived! About an hour before the end of the school day we had our party. 

To make a humiliating dramatic story short, my true love (as I watched) opened the envelope. dumped my carefully chosen candy hearts into the enormous pile he'd accumulated from other love-struck girls, and tossed my card in the trash!


A defining moment of childhood, for sure. I'm not bitter, and I sincerely hope Heartbreaker went on to have a fabulous career, great car, lovely home and a life with all the bells and whistles. I kinda hope he married a bitch, though.

Happy Valentines Day!

~ Dawn

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