Nothing says “romance” like mouthwash

Perhaps I was a bit harsh on romance in my last post, but I can’t help that cheesy love gestures don’t exactly knock my socks off.  But as I’ve said, romance isn’t dead …  yet.   

5 Attempts at Romance that I can really get behind.

1. Holding my hair back when I puke

This is romance for you.  Show me a guy who’s not afraid to pull my bangs back when I’m ear-deep in the toilet, and I’ll show you a stellar boyfriend.  Now I know what you’re thinking, “But, MNM, how can there be anything romantic about puking and toilets?”  Here’s a piece of advice I once heard from a Catholic Priest – “Going to mass anytime is wonderful, but it really counts when it’s a sacrifice.”  It’s a “chips-down” argument – who’s there for you when the chips are down?  Any guy can carry bags, any guy can open doors, but romance really counts when it’s a sacrifice.  There are few more compromising positions than having your face inches away from an object that most people won’t even clean without gloves.  So when you’re there, you better hope you’ve picked the right person to kneel beside you and fix you up afterward.  Remember – nothing says “I love you” like a clean washcloth and some mouthwash.

2. Chocolates and/or stuffed animals

Honestly, these are probably the two best gifts on the planet and the easiest – I don’t see how guys strike out here so often!  I realize that chocolates are overdone, stuffed toys are for children, and flowers are supposedly the gift for “mature” and “serious” couples.  But let me be real for a second – really real.  Flowers wilt; flowers die; flowers require care.  But chocolate and stuffed animals?  Instant gratification presents – and you can’t go wrong.  First of all, stuffed animals are so cute you can’t help but love them, no matter what they are.  One of my friends owns a stuffed-toy uterus.  It’s totally odd, but damnit if the thing isn’t cute as a button!  (She got it from her [female] best friend as a joke.  Don’t buy me a stuffed toy uterus.  It’s an awkward guy-to-girl gift.)  And chocolate is just a no-brainer.  Nobody loves chocolate more than a girl … Except maybe a girl who’s PMSing, but you better give her a double dose.

3. Cooking for me

Forget the candles, forget the red tablecloth, forget the wine.  Ok, put the wine back in.  But substitute those crystal glasses for some $1.50 tumblers that you bought at IKEA.  “But, MNM, how can you have a romantic dinner with no red tablecloth and no candles and $1.50 tumblers that you bought at IKEA?”  Well, because I HATE to cook.  I’m lazy, and I’m terrible at it, and I don’t see where the “fun” comes in.  I watch Food Network shows with happy, rotund women telling me all about how “fun” it is to cook their favorite dish.  The last time I tried to cook a dish, the cap came off the salt container right overtop said dish, and I sat down and cried.  They never show those Food Network women crying.  But being cooked for is much nicer than all that.  Even if I have to help, cooking is a romantic gesture I can totally get behind.  Cooking can be very sweet, as long as we’re not making heart-shaped pies or wearing matching aprons.  If you want me to do something like that, then you’ll get dinner with a side of vom.

4. Hanging out with my family

What I like about a guy who hangs out with my family is that he’s not afraid to take one for the team.  Truth: Family can be awkward for an outsider.  And I get that going to my brother’s 26th birthday party with 14 people you’ve never met might not be your idea of a scintillating afternoon.  But when does love really count?  When it’s a sacrifice!  And trust me – it will probably be a sacrifice – something like baptism by fire.  My family is loud and overwhelming and some of us are a little weird.  We have birthday parties for 25-year-olds, some of us wear socks to the beach, and around Christmastime we brew up regular coffee and call it the “3 Kings’ Blend.”  With all this going on, though, you can bet we’re a hoot and a half once you get used to us.  But if you hang out with my family (and you do it properly – meaning you 1 – don’t touch me; 2 – don’t say anything inappropriate; and 3 – don’t make me babysit you) and you want to come back to get to know us better, then out with the flowers and in with the sacrifice!  Romance is back!

5. Telling me I’m beautiful

Now you might be shaking your head in disappointment right now thinking “Gosh, MNM, a guy telling a girl she’s beautiful is about as tired and cliché as holding hands, watching a sunset, kissing in the moonlight or the facial caress.  What gives?”  And you may be right.  After all, this can be a real cheese-fest if done improperly.  Improper decorum when giving this compliment includes: saying it every day, amending it to say “most beautiful girl in the world” (we both know this is false), saying it when we’re fighting, saying it on Facebook, using is as a nickname.  You see, this is a very finicky compliment, because it can so easily be cheesy and so easily end up with me laughing hysterically at you.  However, I think this is a compliment that can be delivered well.  And, despite all my cynicism, I think it’s something that every girl deserves to hear once in her lifetime.  That said, I can’t promise I won’t laugh at you if you say it…it’s a very finicky compliment.

Read more of Rachel’s Weekly Ruminations

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6 thoughts on “Nothing says “romance” like mouthwash

  1. Was wondering when a picture of Anne and Gil would show up in your blog – so appropriate that it would be in a blog about “appropriate” romantic gestures. Of course Anne and Gil are our favorite romantic couple and Anne is – just like you – a no nonsense romantic – so – perfect choice to accompany this ariticle.

    Loved this one just as much as yesterday – and I get your point about sacrificial romantic gestures – if they give till it hurts – you know it might just be the real deal – haha

    That said though I can’t help but find the parallels to motherhood here – wonder why huh??? I mean holding your hair back when you puke – been there done that. Chocolates and stuffed animals – need I remind you of the special stops at Walmart just for Reese cups and the stack of stuffed toys teetering up to the ceiling in your room??? As far as cooking for you – well it may not be gourmet but been providing meals for ya since – lets see – BIRTH!!! Hanging with family – enough said – that constitutes most social occasions around here. And telling you that you are beautiful – well as Olivia Walton ( mother on steroids) likes to say – “No – I don’t think you are pretty – I think you are beautiful!!! All my babies are thoroughbreds !!!” Have no idea how this all fits with romance but it sure does sound like motherhood to me – weird huh???

    As to yesterdays post – had to laugh about the shopping bag issue and following you around Target like a pack mule – can think of so many shopping trips around Target with you where I’m the pack mule in the scene – following you around with stacks of clothes to try on as you meander through the racks. Certainly not a romantic gesture – and neither of us know any male we’d want accompanying us – but once again – motherhood. But wouldn’t trade it for the world ( Sorry – want me to hold your hair back while you puke on that last comment?)

    • HAHA I never thought of it that way – very true though!! And I absolutely loved the Ma Walton reference. Like I said – I almost mentioned her in the bit about saying I’m beautiful, because I think that might be a way to give the compliment in an un-corny fashion. And speaking of Target…it’s been some time since we’ve made a trip there – I’m going to put that on the calendar for next week!! So glad you mentioned that! Be prepared to be embarrassed!!! haha

  2. Stuffed toys are cute but dust catchers and not much fun to vaccuum.
    Finding someone who will cook for you is by far your best idea.
    By the way…your hair looked great yesterday…love the bangs.
    PS…Looks like you are coming up in the world…I see you now have ads.

    • Yea, about those ads….no idea where they come from! hahaha And so glad you like my hair – a new post is coming soon about the leave-in conditioners I’ve been trying! As for the stuffed animals – if I had to choose, I’d take fluffies over cooking. I just can’t help it – I love them!!!!

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