Alright you soppy lot, who does the whole Valentine’s Day thing? As a singleton I never went in for it myself – but hey, if the whole shebang floats your boat then who am I to judge? Coming up to twenty years with the missus – I’m not going to change now on the whole moonlight and chocolates schtick, and luckily my partner feels the same. Sometimes we have an anti-Valentines (AV) celebration on any February day, apart from the 14th. However, our AV tradition looks pretty much like every other day: a pint or a coffee, a walk in The Dene or over a Bridge, a bit of snogging at the back of the pictures, going to a gallery and staring at the walls, eating some food in a public place. I’m not against all this love ‘n’ stuff it’s just I wonder why should we wait until mid-Feb to be romantic? And what does being romanticeven mean? What works for you won’t for the next man or woman. Some people like whips and nipple clamps, others fluffy slippers and champagne. Before I came out there were two things I really hated: one was going to the hairdressers – which is not an issue now as I have the best hairdresser in the world (yoo-hoo Helen ;)) and the other dreaded occurrence was Valentine’s Day. Being in a closeted relationship and having to deal with the tsunami of heterosexual PDAs was intolerable. If you’ve been in the same situation, you’ll know what I mean. If you ask my wife, she will no doubt report that every day is Valentine’s with me. What else is she going to say? But maybe the best thing to do is be nice to your loved one (or ones) and then decide to replicate that every day of the year, just without the straight-to-landfill gifts and cut stem roses. Give the gift of yourself, to yourself too and just be kind. It a cliché, but in the end if we don’t truly love and care for ourselves, we can’t ever do the same for anyone else.