I want a steak and a blow-job

I want a steak and a blow-job

Let me be clear. This isn’t some sort of tirade against basic bitches who want to enjoy Valentine’s Day in all its pink and read heart-shaped glory. And I use basic bitch here as a mightily reclaimed compliment. I adore basic-ness. In my house we have a sort of Cold War situation going on regarding scented candles: we take it in turns to raid TK Maxx, investing in bigger, better, more expensive scented candles until, one day, we’ll inevitably consume ourselves in pine-scented mutually assured destruction. Similarly, my addiction to scatter cushions has driven a wedge between my boyfriend and I. Literally. At night, we don’t get to touch each other any more because of the blockade of miniature pillows that has overtaken the bed. But they’re so damn pretty.

This goes doubly for Valentine’s Day. I love flowers. I love boxes of chocolates. I love teddy bears. Especially those five-foot ones which are bought exclusively for the 14th February. Because nothing says I love you like an adorable, extravagantly large inconvenience which made you look like a tit as you carried it home on the train.

What I have an issue with is the way all this glorious tat is characterised as What Women Want. The whole of Valentine’s Day in the popular consciousness is based on the bullshit reasoning that it’s a day where men are forced to be nice their women against their will.

Not only does this idea clumsily erase the whole concept of a relationship which isn’t a man and a woman, it’s also not what most heterosexual couples are about either. If a relationship is just a series of one-sided, begrudging acts of courtesy, then there are bigger issues than the fact that you feel £20 is a bit steep for a bunch of wilting roses.

Why are these things gendered anyway? There are plenty of women who don’t like flowers, chocolate or teddy bears. And SURPRISE! there are also loads of men who do like these things. It’s almost like gender-based predilections are SOCIALLY CONSTRUCTED or something! Whodathunkit?!

The thing that most pisses me off is the Reddit bro concept of Steak and Blow-Job Day on the 14th March. For starters the whole thing has a nasty ring to it: as I did something for you last month, you now owe me sexual favours. It also riffs off the whole “all that men need is a dead animal and someone to suck their dicks” reduction which really isn’t helping anybody. Also, bro, if you try and take eating steak and getting head away from me and act like it’s a men-only domain, I’ll fucking destroy you.

So let’s just make Valentine’s Day about being decent to other people. Even more so if you’re in a relationship with one or more of those people. Eat what you want, buy whatever gifts you want, have enthusiastic consensual sexual relations with your partner(s) or others, within your agreed parameters. And do that regularly, not just on a nationally recognised date once a year. And while all that might not be particularly snappy and marketable, it’s a lot more exciting than a resentful, expensive set meal for two.

 

Jen Pritchard

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