I almost forgot Valentines Day was today because I have been quarantined and delirious for three days. I'd have been totally in the dark if I hadn't gone to Walgreens to stock up on extra-strength cough drops. I walked in the door and was immediately accosted by giant heart-shaped balloons, the ones with crepe paper legs and that look like they're walking if you tug the string slowly. They creep me out.

Anyway, I like celebrating a possibly fictitious legend as much as the next girl. And I definitely think the best way to commemorate some random guy's stoning, beating, and decapitation is by eating chocolate and wearing fancy underwear. I'm sure that's exactly what he wished for when he told Claudius to stick it.

But today I didn't get bogged down in traditions. I told myself, "Mei Flower, Valentines Day can suck it. Let's go to a movie." So I did.

I like going to movies by myself. I get to choose the film, nobody makes fun of my Pee Timing, and I can sit anywhere I want. Also--and this is the best part--I never have to violate any of my policies in favor of The Greater Good.

So, what would I see on this, the most barf-inducing romantic day of the year?

There was really only one choice:


I know you're thinking I'm crazy, that there is no romance to this film at all. And, regarding the film itself, I'd have to agree with you.


When I walked into the theater ten minutes before it started, there were two other people--a couple--in there. I was surprised, because I was totally ALONE when I saw Milk last week, so I fully anticipated being the only person who was a big enough nerd/Oscar junkie to want to see this movie. I settled in, taking care to sit on the aisle; at 6:55 I went on my schedule Bathroom Break and, when I came back, attendance had tripled.

But it wasn't over yet! Like the animals trundling into Noah's Ark, couples trickled in two-by-two, and they KEPT COMING. The men carried bags of popcorn and the women wore red sweaters. It was like a cult party, or a Class of 1959 Reunion. Because, oh, did I mention? Not a single person--besides me--was under the age of 60.

By the time the previews had ended and the opening theme started, the theater was full. I was at the least V-day-friendly movie available, yet I still ended up in some kind of Cocoon-y Love Zone ... seventy couples and one consumptive singleton.

There's a line in the film that, paraphrased, states that Richard Nixon's Presidential legacy boils down the adding of the suffix -gate to every subsequent political scandal.

But I'd have to say that, unbeknownst to Richard Nixon, he's apparently some kind of Spanish Fly for Baby Boomers. I was getting a little uncomfortable for a minute there. I coughed a little bit; most times, they were legitimate, phlegm-clearing coughs, but sometimes I just needed those old people to GET A ROOM PLEASE, GEEZ.

If there's a lesson to be learned here, I think it might be this: On Valentines Day, if you're not so comfortable with the PDAs, perhaps it would be best to watch a movie in the safety of your own living room.

Because V-day affects people of all ages, and nothing can stop it. Not even Richard Nixon.

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