February 13, 2014

That Lovin' Feelin'

The Sarge and I are not big romantics.  We met at a club about 16 years ago and it was not love at first sight.  In fact, I was not really sure I liked him at all and ended our conversation with empty promises to try and catch him at his landscaping job in the South Jersey shore town where I would be vacationing with some girlfriends at some point during the following weeks.  I never did.

It was at the same club about six or seven months later that we met up again and this time made more of a connection.  We talked all night and made plans to see each other again at the club.  A few weeks later we had our first date NOT at the club, but the place was a favorite of ours and our respective groups of friends and so we continued to frequent the place.

Because we lived nearly an hour apart, when we first began dating we would mostly plan to meet at the club. Maybe it was because we each went with our friends, or maybe it was just because neither of us was particularly needy individuals, but even as a couple we would go to the club and kind of do our own thing.

Part of this was the nature of the beast.  Sanctuary was (for lack of better descriptives) a Gothic/Industrial place filled with an "Alternative" crowd.  Windmilling around the dance floor is not especially conducive to dancing with a partner.  And although I've seen couples moshing, stomping and even skanking together, none are likely to be considered typically romantic.  

Of course we spoke and had drinks and hung out, but we never danced "together" and we didn't wander around holding hands or falling all over each other. Even after we were spending a lot of time together and actually travelling there with each other we could spend most of the night hardly seeing each other. I'm sure a good many people didn't even know we were a couple.

But aside from the environment, we were just not touchy-feely people. I come from a large Italian family on my mom's side, and we can hug you like nobody's business (seriously, it can take me over 45 minutes to say goodbye to everyone at a family gathering) but the whole PDA thing has never been my bag. I will hug my friends upon seeing them; I have ZERO qualms about smooching my kids whenever and wherever; but I have never been a big lovey-dovey, hand-holding, kissy-kissy foo-foo face, arms-around-each-other-walking-around-town-because-I-NEED-to-touch-you kind of person. And neither has Sarge.  

We're okay with it.  But people think it's weird. And perhaps weirder is we're not especially affectionate talkers either. We don't often say "I love you" after phone calls and such, or even face to face a whole lot. We say it when we need to, or maybe when we think it needs to be heard. Of course, I would never knock anyone that says it all the time, but for sure I can say for us:  it's not automatic, rote, or expected.  

Of course, Valentine's Day is upon us, (not to mention that our 10 year wedding anniversary just passed--uncelebrated) and although I don't hate on this romantic "holiday" I am largely apathetic about it. I find the whole thing to be grossly commercialized--like SO MANY holidays these days--and, well, cluttered.  

Maybe I'm just too practical for Valentine's Day. Everything just seems to be a waste. Flowers? Dead in 3 days. Chocolate? A moment on the lips...and you know the rest. (I don't need that extra work, ya feel me?) And stuffed animals? Seriously, it might be simpler to give your loved one a bag of dust mites and some allergy medicine. Who needs another stuffed monkey holding a chocolate rose and a balloon on a stick?
Honestly, this wasn't meant to be a hatin-on-V-Day-post. It just seemed the right time to put it out there that it takes all kinds--and their significant others. Some of us are just a little (or a lot) less public about it and totally okay with it. You keep your sloppy kisses on the sidewalk, I'll take my grabass in the kitchen doing the dishes. It may not be ideal, or even normal to some, but it's all we need.

You share because you care.