It’s February 14. Valentine’s Day. The time is 8 a.m.
I’ve decided to look nice today. It’s V Day. I’m not normally a romantic – far from it, in fact. But I need an excuse to buy this $22 bottle of wine I’ve been eyeing. So I decide to make a day of it.
I curl my hair, paint on some eyeliner and don my finest red shirt.
I throw down my morning vitamins, gather my things, and head downstairs to put on some underwear before leaving for work.
Once in the basement, I take off my boots and pants. I reach into the dryer to pull out a fresh pair of underwear – and it hits me. I’ve made a terrible mistake. The same mistake I made during the bowl-cut reversal of 2013. I took too many vitamins at once. And now, I am going to vomit.
I panic. What do I do? Where do I go? Do I have time to put my pants back on? Can I even make it upstairs?
Horrified at the thought of a housemate finding me pantless and puking in our laundry room, I yank on my jeans and sprint upstairs.
But I’m in socks.
Thick purple socks. For Valentine’s Day.
So I slip.
And I fall.
I careen down the stairs at a breakneck speed.
My body crashes into the door (which I’d shut behind me), splintering the wood and busting the lock.
I emit a long, tearless wail.
And then another.
My knees are broken. My door is broken. And I have no choice but to lie down to die.
I imagine the paramedics finding my body.
“28-year-old female. Caucasian. Covered in vomit and knee bones.”
“Man, is she…”
“Yeah. Dressed for Valentine’s Day.”
“How horrible. Think she had a fella?”
“Nah. Neighbors said she was single.”
“Christ. Good thing we got to her before the cats did.”
A few minutes later, I regain the use of my limbs.
I poke my kneecaps. And I am surprised to find them intact.
I unfurl my body from the heap I’ve formed at the foot of the stairs.
I email my maintenance man to tell him I might need a new door.
I email my boss to tell him I’ll be late – I fell down the stairs.
He responds, “Do you need a Life Alert necklace?”
I smile. It’s Valentine’s Day. And a man just offered me jewelry.