Who Loves Ya, Baby? (Probably No One)
But it’s ok! I’m here for you.
Like many, I’ll be spending the holiday of love as a single man (unless Rosario Dawson decides to stop playing and come to papi). While this would bother a lesser man, I’ve fully embraced the fact that there is plenty to do with the free time others will spend planning dinners and praying their significant other will do that thing that they only do on special occasions. Nerdery, friends, is the key to enjoying Valentine’s Day all by your lonely, and here are a few suggestions for those that may have in-depth knowledge of the molecular make-up of adamantium.
Play “BioShock Infinite/Burial at Sea Pt. 1” DLC
This is for the poor soul who’d rather forget altogether what day it is and settle in for a great sci-fi ride. If you haven’t already played BioShock Infinite, I feel sorry for your mother. That being said, an alternate 1912 America is home to a floating city of idealists with unchecked practices of dangerous industry, science and racism. In typical BioShock fashion, you’re dropped into this world with the most heinous of amnesia and tasked with rescuing a young girl who may or may not be able to open wormholes to 1980’s France to see “Return of the Jedi” and listen to Tears for Fears records. What follows is a fantastic first-person shooter with the usual Irrational/2K assortment of guns and superpowers (Murder of Crows FTW!) and a story that is so much of a mindf–k, you won’t have time to lament over not participating in the all love going around. The first half of the expansion, “Burial at Sea,” is available now with the conclusion landing March 25.
Catch up on “True Detective”
Now, there exists the type of person that likes to solve puzzles and get so wrapped up in newfound mysteries that all other things go unnoticed. If what you truly cherish is a murder investigation by two effective but seriously flawed individuals, “True Detective” is what you should get comfortable with on Feb 14. Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey executive produce and star in a murder mystery that spans the case and fallout over 17 years in Louisiana. So far, four episodes in, we’ve got shady tent revivals, ritualistic murders, underaged prostitutes, homemade “Blair Witch” totems, domestic strife and “Reggie Ledoux” (making me more uncomfortable than he should). This series has some of the most deliberate pacing and fantastic cinematography on television–we’re talking “Breaking Bad” levels, here but with a style all its own. If you’ve just broken up with your ex, make sure you left things amicably so you have access to their HBO Go password. At the very least, have some understanding friends that will allow you to binge watch the available episodes.
Read a Book!
Namely, “The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao” by Junot Diaz. I was introduced to Mr. Diaz’s work a few years back and most recently intrigued with what he had to say concerning people of color and nerd culture on our very own FanBros. podcast. The man knows his audience and his subject extremely well. Trust me, you’re kinda (read: completely) geeky, into what the USS Enterprise has going down, not getting any on V-Day? Then you can and will relate to the protagonist. Oscar is a teenage Dominican kid with no luck with the ladies, unfortunate looks and a penchant for getting too inside his own head and interests. We follow him on his search for love and a true sense of identity against the backdrop of NYC and the Dominican Republic. Diaz has a unique way of incorporating slang and spanglish into his writing that reads as authentic and familiar. He also (reminiscent of Langston Hughes) grounds his stories in reality by using fantastic sensory descriptions of not just pretty things, but the ugly and mundane as well. There’s nothing more sexy than knowledge and widened world views. Except maybe having someone to share them with. Loser.
Watch “Jump Tomorrow” and Smile.
If your heart won’t let you completely distance yourself from all things love-related, and you consider yourself a hopeless romantic, check out “Jump Tomorrow.” It’s a 2001 indie flick starring Tunde Adebimpe from the band TV on the Radio (I also recommend their music highly) as a Nigerian-American days away from his arranged marriage. A series of unfortunate events (#NoLemony) sees Tunde’s character falling in with a Frenchman named Gerard who’s intent on finding true love and steering George (Adebimpe) to do the same on his own (somewhat, at least) terms. The film is funny, quirky (trite, I know) and charming without being overly saccharine or boring due to well-tread ground. This one gets extra points for not only having a great alternative to the manic pixie dream girl, but also for a small appearance by Isaiah “Shhhheeeeeeeeiiiiiittttt” Whitlock.
Hopefully, everyone has a great Valentine’s Day ahead, but anyone without plans should give these options a try. The only other thing I could suggest would be to play Battlefield 4. It’s player appreciation month, and if anything, it’d be cathartic to shoot someone in the face with no consequences.
The Buddha has spoken.