The fake “I’m awake” voice

Do you ever utilize the fake “I’m awake” voice in the morning?

I’m sure you know what I’m talking about..

It’s 10 am, creeping closer to noon, and you’re still sound asleep; all snuggled up and comfy in bed. You might feel guilty (if you were conscious) because your spouse woke up bright and early to go to work (to benefit the both of you, I might add). Or perhaps cancel the spouse. You’re still sleeping despite the fact that you have mountains of work to get done that you haven’t even started yet. You told yourself you would do it, and yet nothing is getting crossed off the list because you are still drowning in the drool on your pillow.

Days like these are funny because we all deserve a rest day now and then (right?), yet it’s hard to justify them when everyone else in the world seems to be up and about curing diseases, serving justice, and conquering mountains. Your family and friends are becoming better and brighter people while you are drifting lazily in dream land. But you don’t care, you’re asleep!

Until the phone rings, that is, and you groggily look at the caller ID to see that your spouse, or your mom, or whoever, is calling you. You look at the time and realise you’ve wasted half the day in bed, and things that ought to have been done hours ago remain unattended, and indeed, completely neglected. You imagine the disbelief they will have in their voice if you answer the phone only to tell them the terrible truth.

“You’re STILL sleeping??” they will say with that undertone of arrogance and incredulity that you loathe.

You just can’t let that happen. You still deny the reality of your procrastination even to yourself, so instead of owning up to your lazy ass, you decide instead to implement your fake “I’m awake” voice. The voice you muster up despite your hoarse morning throat, to prove to that caller that you, just like them, have been up since dawn, attending to various chores and necessities with vigilance.

So you prepare yourself, and hurriedly cough out the frogs from your throat. You take hold of the phone like you’ve been awake since 6 in the goddamn morning and have had the absolute most grueling day ever, tackling task after daunting task.

With utmost gusto, you press the answer button and say “Hello?” as clear, concise, crisp, and lively as it is possible to pretend. You are the master of feigning productivity. Your caller responds none the wiser as you answer their questions seamlessly, smiling at your success as you begin the arduous task of rubbing the sleep out of your eyes.

You are the great pretender, stealing audience love with your profound performance. Well done, masterful one. Now back to bed.

Valentine’s day liberation

Valentine’s day is just too commercialized!

Every time I hear someone utter this phrase I want to smack them upside the head with a box of Pot of Gold chocolates… and then I want to share the chocolates with them, as an apology.

Yes, Valentine’s day is heavily commercialized… but, so what? Who cares?

You know what else is heavily commercialized? Christmas. St. Patty’s day. And yet every year there are heavily decorated trees with colourful gifts underneath, and people getting drunk off green liquor.

EVERYTHING is marketed. Not even water is exempt. This is our society. Commercialism is a means of stimulating the economy. And no one is putting a gun to your head demanding you buy that package of hershey kisses. Surely there are more important things to whinge about.

So why does the commercialization of Valentine’s day get an especially bad reputation? One reason people tend to give is that you shouldn’t need a specially designated day to show your significant other that you love them. And I agree. We shouldn’t wait all year for this day to say we love our partners. But why not use this day as an excuse to make them especially assured of our love? In fact, I’d like to challenge all of you out there in a couple to just give in and utilize the day of love by doing something extra nice for your partner. Or, if you don’t have a partner, then show the love to yourself! It’s okay to be your own valentine.

Valentine’s day is only as much about money as you choose to make it. The day is just as special if you don’t have a hallmark card or bouquet of flowers. How about showing some creativity and thinking outside the box? Make your spouse their favourite cookies/meal. Or give them an extra fondle and wink that you might usually miss. Hold their hand. Make them laugh. Give them a prolonged embrace. Look them deeply in the eye and say “I LOVE YOU”.

I bet both of you will feel warm and fuzzy for it.

Velantines day

What to do for Valentine’s day

Common complaints about Valentine’s day:

too commercialized. a hallmark holiday. a lot of pressure if you’re in a couple. sucks if you’re single (and you care). awkward conversations between single/coupled friends. just another day which happens to emphasis lovey-dovey-ness.

Sound at all familiar? Well, whether you are indifferent, energized, or dreading the day, it is coming up tomorrow and certainly we are all going to have a few thoughts over it. Whether we plan to or not.

The heavy commercialization of Valentine’s day makes it a day of confrontation- with ourselves. It is a day where we will inevitably assess our current relationship, or lack thereof. It has been this way since we were children. Think back to elementary. Remember? You made that little mailbox for yourself, garnished in hearts and kisses and stickers… and your parents bought you a set of cards to give to the other kids in your class? Wasn’t that sweet. Every Valentine’s day you received some lovely messages from your peers, whether they liked you or not. And you gave equally cute messages out to your peers, whether you liked them or not. Maybe this childhood ritual of giving and receiving is where our unreasonable expectations for Valentine’s day comes from.

Did you become accustomed to this especially nice treatment? Tragic when you grow up and realise that all the caring cards and hershey’s kisses were a lie- a false representation of the day. Don’t get too used to those niceties, kiddies! Cause we all know the truth, don’t we?

All those freebies come to a grinding halt when you’re an adult. One day you wake up on February 14th with an empty mailbox, no cards, messages, chocolates, and none on the way unless you have a partner (sometimes even if you have a partner.) You realise that you are on your own on this grueling day, your enemies don’t put up a front and give you a kiss (unless it’s the kiss of death), and the only person singing your praises is mommy dearest.

Okay maybe I’m exaggerating. Probably most people don’t care too much about it one way or the other. But just in case you’re looking for ideas on how to spend it, I have a few tiny suggestions for you all…

If you are single, and feel bitter and angry with the world because of a horrible ex who ruined your life: Have a bonfire! Collect all the pictures, presents, and representations of your ex and (safely) have a little light show to signify your moving on. If the idea of fire frightens you, then some good old fashioned tearing up of pictures can be just as satisfying and therapeutic.

If you are single, and lonely, and wishing you had a valentine: Be your own valentine! Spoil yourself. Make a giant list of the awesome things about you. Treat yourself to a little something. Buck up your chin. Find optimism, and know that you will find someone to love very soon.

If you are in a couple, but hate your partner: Have an experimental moment and shift your hatred to love on this special day! Remember that the line between hate and love is a very thin one. So change gears, and decide your relationship is worth celebrating.

If you are in a couple, and love your partner dearly: Get creative and show them the boundless extent of your love! Carve the words “I love you” into an apple, or pear. Write a gushy card, or hold their hand on an evening walk. Most importantly, give them your time and genuine attention. That is the most important gift you have.

Personally I’m really digging the apple carving idea. I think that’s my plan.

So what (if anything) are you doing for Valentine’s day? Leave me a comment!