The University of Saskatchewan’s main campus is situated on Treaty 6 Territory and the Homeland of the Métis.

The lazy man’s guide to romance

By in Opinions
The U of S Observatory at night on Feb. 8, 2019.

You’ve been together for about six months — you’ve gotten used to all her weird little noises, and she’s gotten used to yours — and things are getting boring. You need to find a way to revive that initial thrill.

Thankfully, the capitalist ritual of Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. It’s the perfect time to start planning the ultimate date.

If you haven’t started yet, there’s no need to worry because I’ve got you covered. Be warned, though, what you are about to read is the absolute pinnacle of romantic thought. If you follow my advice, you run the risk of generating insane amounts of sexual tension — enough to achieve and sustain critical mass, which could create an explosion powerful enough to vaporize you, your lover and everything within a two-mile radius.

For the sake of laziness, I’m going to be using a female in this scenario, but you can substitute someone with any gender you wish. This advice is equally devastating to all forms of sentient life. Read on at your own risk.

Start by taking her out for food. Somewhere hipstery and cheap — but not too hipstery and cheap. You don’t want her thinking that you’re a hipster or you’re cheap. Drift Vista Lounge should do.

After this, you need to bring her to the observatory on campus. Pray that it isn’t a cloudy night, or else this whole thing will fall apart — dooming your relationship. Put your arm around her waist, and marvel at the wonders of the Milky Way.

Listen while the physics graduate student who works there tries his very best to suck every last bit of romance out of the room by pointing out — through a seemingly inexhaustible list of sobering factoids — the insignificance of your pathetic human existence compared to the endless depth of the universe.

Don’t worry about it too much. You’re just trying to get her thinking about space.

Head back to your house, apartment or shipping container with a space heater. Load up Netflix. If you’ve done the last step correctly and incepted the idea of space into her mind then she should suggest the Christopher Nolan space epic Interstellar. This is absolutely crucial. You need the breathtaking cinematography as well as the haunting, dreamlike soundtrack of Hans Zimmer in order to create the vibe.

Now, put your arm around her as you marvel at how fucking dreamy Matthew McConaughey is, even though he used to be a lot more jacked. Make her laugh by doing an ironic impression of his iconic drawl with “Alright, alright, alright.” Comedy gold.

You’re looking for a real laugh now, so don’t be fooled by a sharp blast of air from the nostrils — you need something more honest than that. You don’t want a lol — you want a LOL. Focus your attention entirely on her, and get visual confirmation: look for little starbursts in the black of her pupils.

Let your glance follow hers. Notice the way it dances for half a second to your lips before returning to your eyes. She notices that you notice. You notice that she notices that you notice. You smile, and she smiles, and then, pulled together by inertia, you both start awkwardly mashing your faces into each other.

Listen, if you’ve read this far, then I might as well be frank with you: there’s no point in pretending there’s some kind of formula to all of this — it just happens. We endlessly overanalyze it — reading and writing great, thick books about the meaning of love, the anatomy of sex, the psychology of romance and the art of picking up women — but we’re really just translating it into bullshit.

You’ll get just as accurate of a description by listening to the weird noises crickets make or the distant howls you hear at night on the Prairies or the whispered conversations of the leaves in the trees. There’s no secret to success. Everyone has just been winging it since the first two monkeys held hands.

George-Paul O’Byrne

Photo: Tony Walker

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