I know I sound pretentious when I say this sort of thing, but I’m not going to apologize. Most Valentines Day stuff is just really dumb. How many cloying cherry cordials can you possibly choke down? How many generic versions of trendy diamond jewelry can your gullible significant other be convinced to buy? (Can I just tell you how much I loathed those diamond circle necklaces from 2007 or so?) How many goddamn teddy bears can one adult person hide in their closet?! Ugh, no thanks.
Personally, the surest path to my heart is to appeal to my love of the absurd and the imp of the perverse perched perpetually on my shoulder. If, you, like me, get off on a sense of sublime silliness, here is a small list of things of can purchase for yourself, or, if you’re feeling generous, I suppose you could gift to a similarly-inclined loved one on this ridiculous holiday. But you should probably just make them buy their own gifts.
Fascinus Pin and Lupercalia Zine from Wormwood & Rue / Heretical Sexts
Learn about the ancient Roman holiday of Lupercalia and get your own winged-peeny Fascinus pin to keep away the evil eye! At Wormwood & Rue, $16
They Call Me Naughty Lola
They Call Me Naughty Lola is an an irresistible collection of the most brilliant and often absurd personal ads from the world’s funniest – and most erudite – lonely-hearts column. I firmly believe that no coffee table should be without this little book of surreal haikus of the heart (especially if dark, dry, self-effacing, British humor is your thing.) $12.99 on amazon.
Lupercalia at Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
Every year I look forward to Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s Lupercalia collection, and their outrageously bizarre Shunga scents, in particular. I can’t wait to field questions of “what’s that gorgeous fragrance you’re wearing” with answers along the lines of, “…oh this? It’s called “Lovers Embrace Under a Cock Kimono’,” or “…oh, you like it? This is ‘Kitten with Shamisen Daydreams of a Phallus Palanquin’.” These limited edition scents are $24
I am intensely tickled (sorry…had to go there) by the idea of healing crystal dildos. I’m also a little terrified of them. What if it breaks? What if it breaks INSIDE ME? Yeesh. I get freaked out thinking about it. But they are really rather beautiful and I love the idea of placing a few of them strategically around the house as display items. Mostly so that I can tell people that they are holding a dildo, should they ask me about it. If you can’t tell, I long to make people intensely uncomfortable. (I think it’s the flip-side of being a people pleaser, to be perfectly honest.) These quartz pleasure wands will run you $114 and up at Chakrubs.