A lot of people are still feeling the economic pinch. The unemployment figures are way up and it remains tough all around. The last thing anyone needs is the pressure of another holiday created by greedy corporate capitalists designed to guilt you into spending money you don’t have to buy things you don’t necessarily need. But alas, this Sunday is Valentine’s Day so you’re shit out of luck. And unlike in Asia where women buy men presents for Valentine’s, in the U.S. the pressure is on the guys to come through with gifts and goodies for their women. Yeah, it’s ass backwards here, tell me about it.

So for all of you guys going through financial difficulties who are now also stressing out because your significant other is expecting something “special” (i.e. expensive) for Valentine’s, I’m here to help. You can surf the net and find plenty of tips on how to do Valentine’s on a budget (see here and here for examples), but come on—taking your woman shopping at a 99 cent store or for a free romantic walk on the beach only reinforces the fact that you’re cheap and/or broke. That won’t fly. Especially if you’re with an Asian chick. And if she’s Korean, forget about it! In that case, Valentine’s Day may just as well be called “My boyfriend is required to buy me a new Prada purse and diamond necklace or I won’t have sex with him for six months” Day.

Now, perhaps you think you’re off the hook because your woman isn’t like that and has told you that she doesn’t need expensive gifts or that she’ll be happy “as long as the two of you are together” or that “it’s the thought that counts.” Wait…do you smell that, my friend? That’s the stench of bullshit. You could be walking into a potential trap if you take her words at face value. It’s like the time my girlfriend…I mean…my friend’s girlfriend told him she was totally fine with him going to a strip club with his buddies. But when I…uh, I mean…my friend went to the Gentleman’s 69 Club and was in the middle of a pricey lap dance with the lovely Andromeda, my his woman showed up, threw a drink in my his face and said that I that he disgusted her.

Trust me, no matter what she says, your woman is expecting something nice for Valentine’s. You show up empty handed, the only action you’ll be getting is from the door that’s gonna hit you in the ass as she kicks you out of the house.

I’m sure you’re feeling pretty depressed by now. I’m sure you’re thinking you have no other choice but to take out six more credit cards and plunge into even more debt. Fear not. I have the answer for you and the awesome part is—you will not have to spend even a dime on your woman for Valentine’s Day. Why? Because you will suddenly come down with a case of Lyme disease rendering you immobile and unable to do anything.

That’s right—on February 13, you will unexpectedly be stricken by Lyme disease. It’s the perfect disease to pretend you are afflicted with because it’s not as common as the flu or as contagious as the H1N1 or as fatal-sounding as cancer. Plus it’s easy to fake because the symptoms are different for each person so there’s no “wrong” way to suffer from Lyme disease (see the Mayo Clinic’s guidelines here). Here’s an example of how you could proceed with such a plan:

Usually a rash shaped like a small, red bull’s-eye will appear. It looks something like this:

Invest just a few bucks in a basic make-up kit and you can create this rash on your arm or your leg with minimal artistic skills. Then, walk up to your woman a few days before Valentine’s and make sure she notices your new rash. When she asks what it is, just reply that you think you must have been bitten by some bug the other day when you were out at the strip club shopping for her expensive Valentine’s gift. But reassure her it’s nothing and brush it off so as not to bring too much attention to the brilliant plan you are now unleashing. Lyme disease is caused by tick bites, so you have now laid the appropriate groundwork for what’s to come.

Flu-like symptoms and joint pain are also common to those afflicted with this disease. So in the following days, you should tell your woman that you might be developing a fever or that your knees seem to be bugging you for no reason. But once again, reassure her that nothing will keep you from showering her with everything she deserves on Valentine’s Day. At the end of the conversation, casually mention that you might stop by the doctor to get a check-up, but that you’re positive it’ll be a waste of time because you are perfectly healthy.

Some other possible symptoms include memory loss, difficulty concentrating and problems sleeping. You can subtly sprinkle in these things as you interact with your woman, but be careful not to overdo it. For example, it’s good to ask her to remind you what day of the week it is and then say, “I must be getting old ‘cause I keep forgetting what day it is.” But it’s bad to show up at her place wearing no pants and then say, “I must be getting old ‘cause I keep leaving the house without putting my pants on.” The latter might be too over the top and arouse suspicion.

Then on February 13, you will drop the big bomb. You call your girlfriend and let her know you just saw your doctor and need to talk to her. You arrive at her place and tell her the doctor thinks you may have Lyme disease, but the tests won’t be in until Monday so you’re not sure. Of course, she’ll be concerned about your health, but don’t mistakenly think this is enough to get you out of your Valentine’s day obligations. That would be a fatal mistake. If she thinks all that’s bugging you is a slight fever and mild joint pain, she may still expect you to deliver–Lyme disease or not. So this is when you have to pull out the big guns.

Lyme’s disease can also cause neurological problems. This can manifest itself as paralysis in any part of your body or even something like blindness. So here’s what you do—you’re talking to your woman and then you suddenly stop and a look of panic flashes across your face. You say, “honey, is there an eclipse today because all of a sudden, everything’s getting dark. So very dark. (long dramatic pause) Oh my God…I think I’m blind.” If you don’t want to go the blind route, you can fake paralysis, but pick whatever you think you can pull off the best.

Calm her down and let her know the doctor said something like this might happen and that the best thing for you to do now is rest. You don’t want her freaking out and calling an ambulance. With any luck, she’ll be the one taking care of you on Valentine’s Day. And when Monday rolls around, you’ll get the “tests” back from your doctor saying you do not have Lyme disease and your condition was simply caused by extreme stress (another reason to fake Lyme disease is that all its symptoms mirror symptoms of someone just going through a lot of stress) and you just need to continue to get a lot of rest to make a full recovery. Hell, if you play your cards right, your woman might even offer to take care of you for another week or more while you take it easy and recover.

By this time, she will have forgotten all about the Prada purse and diamond necklace you didn’t get her for Valentine’s because she’ll just be glad you’re OK and you and your wallet will be home free. A happy Valentine’s Day indeed!


  1. Hahahahahaha…..good one.
    Unfortunately, I’m not an Academy Award caliber actor. Maybe I’ll just move to Asia….oh, but if I buy a plane ticket on such short notice then the security theatre brain surgeons & rocket scientists @ the TSA will hassle me. Just can’t win…

  2. Lyme Disease. Nice. That’s beyond original.

    I’m going to try it. now where to find a tick…

  3. @Roger, no tick required, just some awesome acting skills.

  4. As for the red circle rash, I had a friend who fell asleep on a quarter and got rushed to the hospital because someone thought she had Lyme disease.

  5. Did the “hand model” grow that tick on his hairy chest or something? Moisturize, man, Moisturize! –oh, wait, all in the spirit of the post, right? Moisturizer costs money…

  6. WOW……this one deserves a drink the face as well! lol

  7. What a great resource!