Romance is not for everyone. That's fine, and good, and as it should be. Feel free to indulge your rom com fantasies to your heart's content, if that's your thing. On the other hand, some of us despise emotional contact and are wary of Valentine's Day and all its pomps, 'cause THATS WHEN THEY GET YOU.

For those who struggle not to hate people on principle (and those who've just flat out given up the struggle), know that I am here for you, with a few timely do's and don'ts to keep you safe and love-free this Valentine's Day.

Avoid Gifts: Giving, Receiving, or Re-Gifting

Be they flowers, chocolates, jewelry, or some other tired cliche', avoid direct skin contact with these items as they may have been cursed.

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You can't be too careful. These 'love tokens' might be enchanted to strangle you to death, or worse, make you fall in love. The LAST thing you want is to be reduced to a pathetic, lovesick shadow of yourself. For the duration, drink only filtered water, and eat only bread you've baked yourself.

The trinkets don't even have to be addressed to you. If some 'friend' of yours is receiving too much attention in the form of tokens of affection, and attempts to hand off the overflow, see to it said gifts go immediately into the trash. Better yet: a fire.

The benefits here are twofold:

  1. You've safely disposed of potentially hazardous materials, and
  2. You've let your 'friend' know that future gifts and similar gestures of camaraderie are unappreciated, and unnecessary.

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Avoid Open Spaces To Protect Yourself From Cupid's Arrow

Look: This cherubic little bastard is a free agent. He answers to no one. He is a loose cannon, one that fires feelings! Feelings you didn't ask for. There's really no recourse but to avoid open air for the course of his most active sniping days: The week leading up to Valentine's.

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Violence is almost never the answer, so acquiring a sniper's rifle of your own to defend yourself is not only unwise, but a good way to Disturb the Peace. (Also I have it on good authority that if you DO manage to take out one of Cupid's flying minions, the wings evaporate and... well. It's best not to think about it.)

In any case. If you DO have to go out, put on your best armor of cynicism, the chain mail of indifference, and do be sure to take plenty of Lactaid to resist the Milk of Human Kindness. That filth will clog you up like nobody's business.

Focus on the Grisly Real Life Origins of Saint Valentine

Nothing will take you out of twitterpation faster than dwelling deliberately on the awful roots of this devil's tree.

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People did horrible things to each other! On purpose! Annually! To commemorate a man's torture and eventual death! Isn't love grand?

Hopefully these simple steps will keep you insulated from any... feelings... you wish to avoid, this weekend. Your struggle is not in vain. Trust that you are not alone. (I mean, you are. By choice. Other people are THE WORST. But you're not alone in knowing that.) Now go have fun!

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Casey Jones is a screenwriter with a day job. His heart lies in an egg, in a duck, in a goat, in a cow, in a cave, by a well with no bottom. Protected by an ogre who can't sleep. You can still follow him, however, if that is your wish.