How to enjoy, survive or ignore Valentine’s Day

How to enjoy, survive or ignore Valentine’s Day

Photo Credits: Kaitlyn Pang / Aggie

The best movie, book and album for your V-Day mood

As Valentine’s Day approaches, different emotions arise. You’ve got the heartbroken single folks that are bitter all day long, the love birds who use the day as an excuse to shower their partner with gifts and those who couldn’t care less but wait for the following day’s clearances on chocolates. 

With these three groups in mind, I made a curated list of what to watch, read and listen to depending on your mood this Valentine’s Day.

Heartbroken:

I am a huge advocate for watching sad movies when you’re feeling down. Sometimes you just need to have a nice crying session. Releasing all of those feelings will (hopefully) make you feel better. This is why I am recommending the saddest of sad recommendations for all of my heartbroken readers. 

I was expecting a cute movie to take my mind off of things when I first watched “Irreplaceable You,” but I ended up on my bed in a pool of tears. When Abbie is diagnosed with cancer, she makes it her last mission to find a new love for her fiancé Sam. I’ve always hated the idea that an individual wouldn’t be happy if their partner found love and married again after their passing—that’s such a selfish love, that isn’t real love. With that being said, seeing the lengths to which Abbie went to find Sam the perfect girl is heartwarming albeit slightly morbid. 

I would also recommend the book “The Hearts We Sold” by Emily Lloyd-Jones. In this world, demons grant you a wish in return for a body part. With school on the line and abusive parents waiting for her to come home, Dee Moreno has no choice but to make a deal with a demon. But when Dee makes her deal, the demon doesn’t ask for a random limb; it asks for her heart for a year. She reluctantly accepts and from then on, she does the demon’s bidding. It was an easy read and it kept my mind off of things for a good while, but the ending broke me. Sometimes a devastating ending ties up a story with a bow. This book did exactly that. I fell in love with the characters and kept going for the romantic interest. When it finally ended, I felt sick: I was ambushed with a twist I never expected. This book deserves more recognition than it gets. 

Finally, my all-time favorite artist Taylor Swift wrote the perfect tragic heartbreak album back in 2012: “Red”, which includes gut-wrenching songs like “All Too Well” and “State of Grace.” This is the most emotional album, through which Swift makes you want to curl up into a ball on your bed and listen as she gradually makes you feel better knowing that you’re not alone. 

In Love: 

Kumail Nanjiani wrote “The Big Sick” with his wife Emily V. Gordon based on their love story and Gordon’s sickness. In the movie Kumail plays himself as a stand-up comedian trying to avoid all of the potential fiancés his mom has lined up for him. During one of his shows, Kumail meets Emily, but after a fight which leads to the couple splitting, Emily gets sick and Kumail forms a surprising bond with her family. I recommend this movie to everyone looking for a cute rom-com. It’s one of those love stories where the characters just match up together, and it makes you laugh. Most romantic movies will get a decent chuckle out of me, but none of them really make me laugh like this one did. 

“I’ll Give You the Sun” by Jandy Nelson follows a set of twins, Noah and Jude, that grow apart during their teenage years. The story goes back and forth between the twins’ points of views, but in the end, the stories intertwine. This novel is perfect for those that are in love and want a small entrance into another romantic world.

Matt Maeson’s songs (especially the stripped versions) on “Bank on the Funeral” have me listening to them on repeat. They’re perfect for an individual in love as they ride in the passenger seat of their partner’s car on the way to a drive-in theatre. 

Indifferent:

I think we can all agree that “WALL-E” is a love story, but it’s much more than that. It touches on humanity and its ultimate love for Earth. It attests to trying to rebuild something from the bottom up with pure hope. This is why it’s perfect for people who don’t necessarily care for Valentine’s Day; it has a little bit of everything. It has the love between Wall-E and Eve, it has comedy, it has adventure and it shows the importance of perseverance in the human race. 

“The Book Thief” by Marcus Zusak is a book you won’t want to put down. Let’s start with a line on the first page: “Here is a small fact: You are going to die.” If that jarring line doesn’t bring you into a book when you are indifferent to what happy couples or miserable singles are doing on Valentine’s day, then I don’t know what will. Narrated by Death, the book focuses on Liesel Meminger, a young girl who is sent away from her family after her brother’s death. Liesel is left to live with strangers who teach her how to read, inspiring her love for books. When a young Jewish man secretly takes shelter in their basement, she describes the weather to him through the words she learns from the books she steals. 

There’s something about Of Monsters and Men’s 2016 album “My Head Is an Animal” that makes me feel so calm. When Valentine’s Day comes around and you couldn’t care less about love, this album is perfect to nod your head to as you go about your day sans romance.

Written By: Itzelth Gamboa — arts@theaggie.org