I'm in San Antonio this week, eating oranges and listening to love songs by myself in my hotel room. I have two shows tonight at the LOL Comedy Club where I'll be performing for a bunch of people that are out celebrating Valentine's Day.
Oh, Valentine's Day.
I've never been very girly. As a kid, I hated dolls. My mom bought me a Barbie doll once and I chewed off her legs. I preferred playing with Masters of the Universe action figures more than playing house.
My entire life, I've been told to be more feminine. Wear a dress, wear make-up. Growing up, I couldn't think of anything else I wanted to do less than those things. I'm fine with doing those things now (on a rare occasion) but back then, forget about it. When I hear people talk about high school, their experience sounds so different from mine. They talk about dating, cheerleading, going out with friends, etc etc. My experience couldn't have been more different. When I was in high school, I never went to prom, I never went out on a date period. I was/am a tomboy. I had two really close friends that I would hang out with at school, we were drama nerds but if I wasn't hanging out with them, I was at home probably watching something science fiction or playing my Nintendo.
I grew up with two brothers and a sister. My sister got married when I was really young and I ended up hanging out with my brothers a lot. From my brothers, I learned about comic books, baseball cards, classic rock/heavy metal...AND I LOVED IT. As I got older, I realized that I was a big nerd, a geek. I was in the Quiz Bowl team in high school, I was a President of the Drama Club, hell I won numerous medals for the Academic Decathlon. My high school years were spent watching a lot of Star Trek: TNG and playing Dungeons and Dragons with a friend that worked as a substitute teacher at my school.
I was always one of the guys. I always had more guy friends than girl friends. Growing up with my brothers, I've always felt more comfortable with guys I guess. As years passed though, I realized that being one of the guys meant never being treated 'like a girl' and after a while, that started bothering me.
I was also bullied really bad in school by a group of guys so maybe that didn't help my thoughts about dating either. Those guys were jerks. They loved making me cry. And oddly enough, my friends were friends with them, which I never understood why they'd do that but I guess having those guys being so cruel to me made me not want to date anyone either.
So what do you do when you have a group of friends that sees you as a boy and another group of boys that see you as a problem? You throw yourself into your work and tell yourself that love is overrated. I started focusing all of my energy into theater and made performing my first true love. It was easy for me to do this because I wasn't allowed to date or even talk to boys on the phone.
You know those scenes in teen movies where they nerdy, tomboy girl gets the makeover and everyone starts treating her like a princess? That doesn't happen in real life. When you're a nerdy tomboy, guys don't pay you compliments like they would to other girls, at least not to me. I'd get compliments like, "Hey, you can throw like a guy!" or "Hey, you can really drink beer!" Not the same kind of compliments that other girls would get.
I was in my mid 20's when a guy told me I was pretty for the first time and I didn't know what to do. I was speechless and excused myself to go to the bathroom because I felt really awkward about it. I thought he was joking.
I think that's probably why I hate Valentine's Day so much...because I don't think I could really handle the idea of having someone get me stuff and making me the center of attention in that kind of way. I've never had that.
My boyfriend right now is the first boyfriend I've ever had. I told him when we started dating that I don't celebrate Valentine's Day. I think he secretly really liked that about me because he didn't have to worry so hard on that day like other guys do but the truth is, I don't celebrate Valentine's Day because I can't handle it.
I wonder if there are other girls like me out there or if I'm just weird.
I can handle a Star Trek or Star Wars chat. I can talk about which Dr. Who is my favorite. I can dress up in cosplay, or drink beer and play video games for hours...but I can't handle a guy saying anything nice to me or about me.
And that's why I can't stand Valentine's Day but that's just me so I guess "Happy Valentine's Day" to everyone out there and if you're single, "Happy Friday!"