Famous Adjacent: Dying on a Valentine's Date

Actually it's you.

If I’m supposed to believe every romantic comedy I’ve ever seen, spending Valentine’s Day alone is the worst. For those of us who have actually lived life however, this is complete bull crap. I can tell you from experience the worst way to spend Valentine’s Day is to be stuck in a horrible relationship pretending to still love a person you’re fairly sure came from Satan’s bollocks. (I don’t know if I used that word right, I’m not British, but I’m trying to clean it up for the kids.)

My worst Valentine was spent with a woman that if someone ever builds a time machine, I would use it to punch myself in the face moments before we ever started dating. I hated this woman more than old people hate desegregation. And before you start asking questions like, “Why didn’t you just end it if you hated her so much?” You can chug it.

We both had a lot riding on making our relationship work, and even though we both knew it was as doomed as any movie starring Taylor Kitsch, we weren’t quitters.

Since I was poor at the time I had made a deal with a comedy club that I would perform stand-up, and my payment would be a Valentine's Day dinner for two at the club afterwards. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

Except my show went horribly. The audience wanted me dead, and around twenty minutes in, I could hear a couple loudly discussing my sexuality. To the club’s credit, they held up their end of the bargain and gave me my “romantic” dinner for two. In this case, romantic means there was a candle in the middle of the table.

My girlfriend began to explain how embarrassing it was for her to eat at a table with the comedian that had just died onstage. I couldn't appreciate how humiliating it was for her, but offered the suggestion "Wanna get out of here?"

And that’s just what we did. Then we proceeded to have what I would wrongly think of as the biggest fight of my dating life. Threats were made. Faustian-level deals struck.

It was awful.

I began to fantasize about being alone, and how great my life would be if she wasn't in it.  But then I began to realize that our relationship was so bad if something bad happened to her everyone would immediately make me the prime suspect. And they’d be right, because it would have been me.

In the harsh light of day, I realized I needed to formulate an exit strategy. And even though it hurt and took 3 years to pull off, it totally worked.

Many years have passed since then. I’ve been married for five years to the raven-haired girl of my dreams. And as you may have guessed dear reader, I am not an easy man to live with. These days I would never fantasize about something bad happening to her. But I’m sure she thinks about it.

Seriously, I'm really horrible.

Love and Lust,

Sean Keenan

Famous Adjacent is a twice-monthly column written for the Revue blog by Charlotte comedian Sean Keenan. Find him on Twitter at @turbosweet.

Categories: Arts + Culture, Revue