Valentine’s Day, for pessimists and procrastinators

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Whether you’ve had your calendar marked for weeks before the day or are dreading its very existence, Valentine’s Day will soon be upon us and there isn’t much we can do about it. For some, it’s a day of celebration and carnations, and for others, a day to really not get out of bed. Regardless, the holiday falls on a Saturday this year, which means that we all have a little time to take a breather and feel the love, even as we slowly but surely approach the fiery gates of midterm season.

Throughout campus and the city beyond, there are a variety of Valentine’s Day goings-on and deals that’ll let you romp around completely googly-eyed or as pessimistic as you please. There really is something for all of us.

From a cute weekend brunch spot to a party that lets you bask in your accumulated cynicism (we’re talking voodoo dolls, piñatas — the whole shebang), Cupid’s special day can be spent your way, and it seems that many Angelenos have already gotten creative. Here are some of my picks for things to do this Valentine’s Day weekend.

Attend Stories Books and Café’s “These Are Not Love Poems”

Feb. 12 – 8 p.m. – 1716 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90026

If an evening of bad-ass “oh sh-t, I’m single on Valentine’s Day again” poetry sounds appealing to you, perhaps you should check out this reading event at Stories Books and Café in Echo Park. The featured poets include Nicolette Daskalakis, a recent graduate of The School of Cinematic Arts here at SC and author of Because You’re Now Banging a French Girl. If the rest of the pieces are anything like hers, it should make for a hilariously candid evening of genuine fun.

Catch brunch at Poppy + Rose

Feb. 14 – 765 S. Wall Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014

Need a last-minute date idea? Are you a morning person? Want food for the sake of wanting food? If so, brunch might be your best bet. Poppy + Rose is an adorable seasonal diner located in the Flower District that throws us back to the sweet times of the country kitchen, when everything was farm fresh and made from scratch. This more sophisticated, updated version still does this and serves up some mean classic favorites, including biscuits and gravy made with house-baked cathead biscuits. There’s also an eggs benedict that is only served on Saturdays, which means there’s already enough love in V-Day for me this year.

Steal a kiss at Qdoba

Feb. 14 – 655 S Hope St, Los Angeles, CA 90017

This delicious burrito chain is offering a buy-one-get-one-free deal on its smothered burrito — that is, if you kiss someone at the door! Qdoba stresses that said kiss must be consensual, for all you super spontaneous types.

Get a sweet deal at Umami Burger

various locations

If you haven’t been to an Umami Burger, or you’re a meat or truffle lover, this one’s for you. Until Feb. 15, the Truffle Burger will be going for $8 instead of $12 — not a bad deal. With its truffled aioli, house truffle, cheese and truffle glaze, this burger is brimming with flavor and truffle-y goodness. Make sure to get an order of fries with that too.

Join the original anti-Valentine’s crowd at Birds Café and Bar

Feb. 14 – 5925 Franklin Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90028

There are a shocking, and perhaps marginally concerning, number of anti-Valentine’s events in Los Angeles, but Birds prides itself on being the original. If you need to blow off some emotional steam , it’s rumored that voodoo dolls will be stuck with needles and lit on fire, if that may satisfy your fix. Come for the food, drinks, and the love of not loving; stay for the piñatas meant to commemorate those glorified exes.

Revel in the Broken Hearts Circus at Angel City Brewery

Feb. 15 – 12 p.m. – 216 S. Alameda St. Los Angeles, CA 90012

If circus-style entertainment puts a smile on your face, come one, come all to Angel City Brewery’s annual (anti?) Valentine’s Day festival. There will be circus-themed food from Market, Burgers, Pizza & Co. and Love Swirls Desserts—enough to bring any nostalgic person back to the best days of childhood. There will also be live music and a Beer Bazaar featuring local art, candles, and vintage wares.

The Vagina Monologues

Feb. 13 – 5 p.m.

Need to stay on home turf this weekend? Fear not, Ground Zero’s got a show for you that is entertaining just as much as it is impactful. The event will feature a series of monologues narrated by women who have had funny, enlightening, and tragic experiences involving their vaginas—ones that show that a woman is more than just her body. This annual performance aims to promote discussion and help fight to end violence against women. Tickets are sold at the door with a $5 donation. Proceeds go to A Window Between Worlds (AWBW), a nonprofit dedicated to using art as a healing tool to empower and transform individuals and communities impacted by violence and trauma.

Of course, these are just places to start. There’s always the 50 Shades of Grey premiere to look forward to (the soundtrack has some real gems), and there’s always, always Netflix. Have a good one!

Viviane Eng is a freshman majoring in print and digital journalism. Her column, “Among Us & Other Things,” runs Thursdays.