Hello, lonely hearts club! Zoe is here to help you through the most brutally unfair day of all, Valentine’s Day. Ultimately, it’s just like any other day: You wake up and have two choices 1.) play Valentine’s Russian Roulette where you put a loaded gun next to your nightstand, drink a bottle of Stoli, watch The Notebook and Love Actually back to back, and see if your family, job and future love prospects are enough to keep you alive, or 2.) get up and go to work like every other day, remembering that you don’t compare yourself to others because almost everyone is unhappy and in an emotionally exhausting relationship with diminishing sex returns. Whichever you choose, Valentine’s Day is coming whether you like it or not, so I just want you to be prepared.
WARNING: If you’re punch-drunk in love, staring endlessly into your partner’s almond-shaped eyes over candlelight, wondering how you ever breathed before you met them, then you can fuck right off. Why are you reading this anyway you smug bastard? Go get matching outfits and have slow, meaningful sloth sex for hours on a zebra skin rug in a Tuscan villa while Marvin Gaye sings softly in the background. This is not the article for you.
But, if you, like so many New Yorkers, are charging up all your sex toys and preparing to spend a night in your diorama-sized, apartment, watching Bridget Jones Diary, wondering why God hates you and only you, I have gathered a list of places for you to celebrate your singledom so you don’t spend this day sobbing uncontrollably while you stalk your ex and their new boo on the socials. You’re welcome!
GO FUCKING PARTY YOUR SINGLE, FABULOUS ASS OFF:
Bar Lunatico — Do you love men named Juan Carlos? Do you love spicy red wine and being twirled around a dance floor? Do you love Spanish TV shows where everyone is always pregnant? Then this is the place for you! Bar LunÀtico transforms into an Andalusian tavern with flamenco guitarists, singers, and special flamenco dancers, so you can dance your poor, shattered little heart back into formation. Dance heals all wounds. This I am sure of.
Sleep No More — Sleep No More, the jaw-dropping multi-level theatre spectacular, is the perfect place for your solitary heart…A place where you don’t need anyone; you have a mask, a martini, and a can-do attitude. My guess is within minutes you’ll find some swarthy-masked man and spend the entire night getting lost in dark corners with him. Shave your legs. Just do it. I know, I know, it’s winter and there’s almost zero chance your wool tights are going to end up on the floor of your new love interest, but fuck it, always be prepared.
Heartbreak Karaoke — Sulking while single on Valentine’s Day is so passé. Why not attend an anti-Valentine party? Get your achy-breaky heart in front of a karaoke machine and don’t just feel the pain; spread it around and make others feel it too! They’ve got depressing, heartbreaking songs and enough bitter tears and sweet liquor to fill a swimming pool.
Get yourself a massage — Whether it’s a $30 quick and dirty rub ‘n tug in Chinatown or a more private affair, there is nothing that will make you feel as good as someone rubbing your feet. Unless you have found a partner with a foot fetish (and if so marry them ASAP), chances are your subway feet need some TLC. It’s NYC, just pay people to make you feel loved. That’s why we live here right? OR if you’re feeling fancy, call up my masseuse Sophia to come to your home and balance all your chakras with her hotness and Harlem Globetrotter hands. It’s so good. Her face massage literally will melt your troubles away. Number upon request.
Korean bathhouse — Is there any place more fun than a Korean bathhouse? It’s like going to Mars: insane traditions, fun new food, everyone wearing oversized canvas uniforms that would make even Christie Brinkley in ‘81 look like an obese flying squirrel. Eat Bibimbap and pass out watching soap operas where women try to make facial expressions, despite having had an amount of plastic surgery that Joan Rivers would have found barbaric. Steam, sweat, soak, get yo’ nails did; it’s a wonderfully tranquil space where romance does not exist, and men and women are separated. Hurray!
Masturbate all day — It’s February, it’s freezing, and going out sucks anyway. Order your favorite ramen, eat noodles and then just cum all day. Masturbate until your wrist cramps. Jerk off until the sun comes up and Smokey Bear has to come warn you about fire safety due to the smoke wafting out of your well-done vag. Don’t worry…pretty soon someone will find you who loves you, and they’ll catch you in a marriage sack and you’ll be traded for two camels and a three-legged goat. Then, you’ll have children and you’ll dream of the day you could have stayed home alone watching Toddlers & Tiaras, eating a bowl of $8 berries off your belly while you ice your exhausted index finger.
Go shoot guns — What could actually be a better way of spending a Valentine’s Day than at the rifle range? Get out some of your pent-up, single gal energy by decimating a piece of paper that may as well represent all your unused, fertile eggs and possibilities of happiness that you ruined with your neuroses.
Babysit for a friend — This is possibly the best idea since you’ll make money and earn huge kudos with one of your sad, overburdened mom friends, and you’ll have the added bonus of getting to see how non-romantic real-life couplehood is up close! Put the gremlin to sleep and delight in the fact that you’ll return to your LEGO-and-high chair-free apartment where your greatest responsibility is an air plant that’s already half dead because you got drunk and accidentally watered it with vodka. Oops! All good!
Volunteer — No better way to get your sad-sack head out of your ass than to remember how lucky you are in the first place. Hope for New York has lists of places you can volunteer last minute. There are awesome programs to sit and hang out with wise-cracking old New Yorkers at their old-age homes; help cook and serve food for the homeless; teach English to new immigrants; teach soccer to middle school kids; hang out with lonely dogs at a shelter (you have so much in common!) There’s no end to the ways you can use your hands to help, which in turn will help your heart.
Go dancing at a gay bar — No pressure, good music, and everyone will dance with you out of pity and tell you you’re pretty. WIN.
Here’s the good news: being alone is not a bad thing. It sure beats being in an unhappy, argumentative, sexless relationship. Love doesn’t have a day; it’s a voracious python swallowing everything in its path. My only real advice is to do yourself a favor and stay off social media, it’s brain poison. Radical self-improvement is the only way to beat the Valentine’s Day blues, so go to kickboxing or yoga or whatever it is you do to get your blood boiling. Drink a good glass — or bottle — of wine, and sit back and wait for Cupid’s arrows to disappear again for one more year…and don’t forget to masturbate.