Dating in quarantine has been a nightmare for someone like me. I’m an extrovert who used to do a lot of extra-curricular activities and general volunteer work. During these activities, I’ve met plenty of wonderful people but never really dated any of them.
With Valentine’s Day looming it’s mocking face at me, I am here spending another Valentine’s day by my lonesome and in quarantine. With the once-in-a-lifetime pandemic, I have not been as social as once was. My parents have weaker immune systems, and my brother is immunocompromised after going chemotherapy treatment for cancer. Going out on an in person date isn’t really on the top of my list of priorities. So, for a brief moment, I turned to online dating. I must admit that I do feel a bit of pressure as several of my close friends are in relationships and I am the lonely one without an ounce of luck in the love department. Dating apps are fun for a bit, though conversations turn dry, and you’re left alone again. I don’t think that these apps don’t work at all; I think that they just don’t work for someone like me. College is supposedly the time that you make friends and sometimes your partner. I’ve seemed to get the first half down but never the second one.
A part of me is cynical and thinks of Valentine’s Day as a commercial holiday that has long lost its earnestness. However, the other part of me is a hopeless romantic. It’s the duality that comes with being a Gemini I suppose, not that I really believe in horoscopes that much. With the holiday now occurring during the one year anniversary of the plague, it seems more depressing than usual. The pessimistic side of me sees that stores are lined with mass-produced items, probably by child workers that get a meager pay, that will eventually no longer serve a purpose and be thrown out which then creates more waste. On the other hand, the more optimistic side, the more lovey dovey tender hearted part of me, wants to be wooed. I want to be serenaded or get a personalized poem or that Sanrio Squishmallow line (if you seriously know where you can find one, please MIO me, thank you). Is that too much to ask for? Then again, some say that my standards in partners are too high. All I am looking for in a partner is that they are anti-racist, not transphobic, not homophobic, not racist, pro-choice or believes in reproductive bodily autonomy, and likes theatre (this one isn’t really a dealbreaker for me to be honest). It seems that the latter is too demanding, alas a depressed social science student can dream. I JUST WANT WHAT FROG AND TOAD HAVE (if you don’t get this reference, you’re probably straight or cis or both which is honestly tragic).
My musings must come to an end. I hope that you dear reader have a better Valentine’s Day than me if you do like to celebrate these sorts of things. May your day be filled with love and joy. And if you’re not into this sort of thing, take down capitalism or the monarchy, whatever floats your boat. If you want to find me, I’ll be celebrating in my basement, with a bottle of mimosa, and my dog which I’ve trapped down here with me.
By Angélique Chu