"You're 'eh'" and other love letters
Collegiate updates of a few Hallmark classics
This season, I would like to moonlight as a greeting card writer — preferably of the heartbroken, slightly vulgar Joseph Gordon-Levitt variety.
What spurs such a bold career move, you may ask? It all started in the grocery store.
Upon a recent trip to restock my Triscuits, the single staple item in my pantry, I took a wrong turn and soon found myself perusing the greeting card aisle. I don’t want to cry divine intervention, but since I legitimately went to the grocery store for the sole purpose of buying crackers, I’m driven to think some higher power was at work.
What I saw was shocking. Not a single emotion I’d felt during the entire month of February was reflected in Hallmark form. This was very disappointing — I have a lot of feelings, so I really expected my odds to be better. But amid a polarizing month of “I’m in love” and “I’m single, insufferable and am going to turn every conversation back to my impending future among 22 cats despite your awareness I am actually a dog person,” it seems collegiate incarnations of sentimentality have been unceremoniously pushed aside.
So for all you people out there who don’t give a chocolatier’s ass about Valentine’s Day, here are a few relevant cards I have in the works. Feedback is welcome, but I probably won’t take it. Conveniently, this is also the title of my card on peer response papers. It can be found in the “friendship” section, which — unlike the actual friendship section — offers cards for your peers and the guy you see everywhere so you’re forced to build a relationship based on no legitimate mutual interests.
1. “I’m sorry I puked under your sofa cushions and left you to deal with it” (Sympathy section)
Unless it’s your own, vomit isn’t funny. While I’ve noticed many collegians become more and more desensitized to this phenomenon as they rise through the University ranks, I hope I never cease to be shocked by partygoers’ ability to find the most inopportune location within a half-mile radius and heave in it. Thank goodness I don’t have any family heirlooms, because Sally Drinks-a-Lot would undoubtedly find great-grandma Anna’s antique rich mahogany chest and go to town in that thing.
As vomit-related condolences are relatively an untapped market, I truly hope to seize upon this spew of opportunity. “Your Lysol job was two thumbs upchuck?” Gold.
2. “Congrats on getting another thing you applied for of your own volition but will inevitably begin complaining about within two days” (Congratulations section)
“Thanks! Even though the majority of my college stress is entirely self-constructed, don’t expect me not to act as if a terribly un-American policy of conscription led to my enslavement to the Relay for Life Food Committee.” — anticipated quote from likely recipients
3. “I like you!*” (Love section)
Asterisk can be filled out with card giver’s qualifying statement of choice. Options include:
a) *Thursday through Saturday after 1 a.m.
b) *But not enough to ever make you breakfast. For some reason, bacon and eggs feel really intimate to me and
c) *Scratch that, you double texted me, and I’m going to extrapolate that action into a belief you want my hand in marriage and so I have begun a plan to cut ties accordingly.
4. “I…commitment problems.” (Love section)
The world’s greatest cop-out, now conveniently available in cardstock form.
5. “You’re okay, but seriously, how can you be so many places at once?” (Miscellaneous section)
To be sent to aforementioned guy you see everywhere so you were forced to build a relationship based on no legitimate mutual interests. At this point, I’m forced to believe his regular cameo appearances may mean he’s becoming a supporting character in my life, and I’m not all that happy about it. Cheers to friends of convenience — if you’re not what Valentine’s Day is all about, I don’t know who is.
Julia’s column runs biweekly Thursdays. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.