Greetings xoJaners. Apologies for my radio silence, I’ve been busy projecting imaginary illnesses onto my cat and researching black ankle boots for the majority of the past six months -- but I got a signal boost from one of you guys the other day in the comments section so I thought I’d pull my finger out and get back on the xoJane train.
I thought I’d write something about all the different things you can do instead of celebrating Valentine’s Day tomorrow, because WHO NEEDS ROMANCE ANYWAY?
I have complex feelings about Valentines. On one hand, I think it’s a nice celebration and a time to reflect and appreciate each other. And I like presents.
On the other hand, I know it’s complete horseshit that’s peddled by card companies to make money. But if there’s something I’m good at, it’s spending money, so who am I to argue? And, again, I like presents.
I’ve spent the last six years trying to enforce some kind of romanticism into my boyfriend, and I think I’ve finally gathered that that old dog certainly isn’t learning any new tricks soon. Saying that, we are going for a meal at my favorite tapas place where I will drink gallons of sangria and port and panic about not getting enough jambon croquettes (pro tip: there are never enough jambon croquettes, ever, anywhere), and we’ll exchange gifts and cards, ‘cos consumerism, and I’ll probably Instagram it all and add the Amaro filter as that’s the one that looks the most dreamy in my humble opinion.
BUT -- if we weren’t doing that, or if suddenly he is called out of town on a secret mission and I am left to my own devices -- here’s what I would be doing instead.
Listening to Saint Etienne’s "He’s on the Phone" over and over again
Seriously, this song is a fucking banger!
I’m currently on a '90s hype on Spotify and I just rediscovered it. The tinkly piano! Sarah Cracknell’s breathy vocals! The euro-trance backing! GOD. It’s just a slice of pop perfection. After listening to that approximately 30 times, I might move onto "Stars" by Dubstar.
Putting my cat in a headlock and telling her I love her
We got a new cat! Well, she’s actually five, so she’s not that new, but she’s new to us. She’s a DIVA. She needed rehoming so I just said, "Yeah I’ll have her, no I don’t need any further details just bring her now please, yes now no further details required" without telling Chris. BEST IDEA EVER!
She’s absolutely massive and she has little bald patches on her tummy and she’s a pain in the arse. She punches me in the face at 5 a.m. every morning and then screams MIAOW in my ear until I get up and feed her, and then comes and sits on my head because it’s the warmest spot on the bed, next to the radiator. I love her so much it actually pains me.
Watching "Gossip Girl" in bed
Oh my god. How have I never discovered this? I just started watching it on Netflix and I’ll never look back.
It’s so trashy! It almost fills the gaping hole that "The O.C." left. Almost, as I’m not sure anything can actually fill the chasm that Seth and Ryan left behind when the show ended. But close. I still don’t know any of their names five episodes in, so I just refer to them by their hair or their real names, which is fine.
Eating peanut butter out of the jar with a spoon
AS IF YOU HAVEN’T DONE THIS. Eating peanut butter out of the jar with a spoon is one of life’s purest and undeniable pleasures. I’ve pretty much cracked the technique: stand in the kitchen at the cupboard, preferably only in underwear, grab a small spoon, give your jar of choice a stir, get a heaped spoonful, and lick it off the spoon from the outside in. Repeat.
My favourite peanut butters, in order, are:
Peter Pan Extra Crunchy (can’t get this in the UK. Worst ever.)
Jif Crunchy (see above. Maybe someone send me some?)
Meridian Organic Crunchy - a bit healthy but assuages some of the inevitable after-guilt
Under no circumstance is Sun Pat acceptable.
Planning revenge against my hairdresser
Last week I sat in the hairdressers for THREE HOURS while my stylist faffed about and kept running off and fucked my hair up. The blondes amongst you will know that when you say you want "ash," it means "don’t allow any warmth in AT ALL or bad things will happen." Sadly, the stylist, in-between running off every five minutes for a cigarette or to catch up on Eastenders or something, completely disregarded this and now I have orange roots.
I can’t be arsed to go and sit there for another three hours while it’s corrected, so instead I’ll just sit in the bath with a pile of purple toning shampoo on my head whilst plotting my revenge.
So guys, there’s a whole heap of things I might do if I weren’t going to eat a shitload of tapas. Maybe I’ll cancel and do all of that instead? It sounds like a pretty ideal evening if you ask me.
What are you doing tomorrow? Got any plans? What are your top five peanut butters? I’ve missed you.
Natalie’s putting the Amaro filter on her life over on Twitter & Instagram: @natalie_katem