Think of him as a cardiothoracic surgeon — but for the human heart. Dr. Lovehandle, DDS, draws from the vast personal experience of his two brief romantic relationships — three if you count the time a girl in high school pretended to date him as a prank on her mom — to help you handle all your love problems.
Author of such love advice books as Renovating Your Love Shack with the Granite Countertops of Communication and No, That's Not Normal, That's Weird and Gross, the widely acclaimed wisdom of Dr. Lovehandle runs weekly in the Inlander next to our Horoscopes Corrections column.
With Feb. 14 looming, we've gathered the best of Dr. Lovehandle's love-handling advice to make this holiday truly worthy of honoring St. Valentine's execution by the Romans.
1. If you've been recently hurt, learn to love yourself before dating again. When you're ready, break it off with yourself, apologize for using yourself as a rebound and explain to yourself that, while you had fun, you'd prefer to be dating someone less self-absorbed.
2. Looks aren't everything. Surveys show that men and women put just as much value on appearance, physical attractiveness, handsomeness, beauty, prettiness, hotness, and whether your abs have a great personality.
3. Is it a date, or are you just hanging out? It's tricky, but generally, if at the end of the evening he kisses you and the priest says, "I now pronounce you husband and wife," it's probably a date.
4. Remember, there's no shame in using the Internet to meet people. If the Craigslist Killer could do it, so can you.
5. Be careful, however. Not everyone is who they appear to be online. Before agreeing to meet in real life, ask "Are you actually a computer forensics expert hired by a newspaper as part of an in-depth journalistic investigation to pose as a young gay man in order to seduce me, then expose my tangled double life and hypocritical morality in an explosive exposé that sparks a recall to drive me from office and forever tarnish my name?"
6. Honesty is important, but you don't want to reveal too much, too fast. Wait until at least the third date before telling her that you're Spider-Man.
7. Hold all arguments in front of a pre-agreed-upon panel of three neutral parties, to judge who's right and who's winning the relationship.
8. Sometimes "playing pretend" can be a great way to spice up your sex life. Sure, you may find it silly, but, for just one night, make believe you find him physically attractive.
9. Positive affirmation is important. Leave little lovey-dovey notes around the house that say things like "remember to fix the faucet" and "don't eat this cake! — it's for Annette's baby shower Friday."
10. Don't worry if your significant other's parents aren't initially fond of you. Take them aside and gently assure them that you're only a placeholder until he/she meets someone more attractive and of a higher social standing.
11. Consent is crucial. Make sure to ask any of your subordinates, "May I grab your ass and try to kiss you?" before grabbing their respective asses and trying to kiss them.
12. Don't be afraid to get naughty! While dining at an upscale restaurant, return from the restroom and sidle up beside him, slipping a pair of your socks into his hands, letting him know that, under your shoes, your feet are completely bare.
13. Don't stress. No marriage is perfect, except for Kanye West and Kim Kardashian's, because they are in love on a level mere mortals will never understand.
14. And if all else fails, never underestimate the power of a romantic gesture. There's nothing like standing outside her bedroom window, and with Peter Gabriel blasting on the boombox and rose petals scattered at your feet, setting the court's restraining order ablaze. ♦