does your baggage match mine?

Relationship kryptonite?

Hello, it's Valentine's Day.I adore this holiday from the chalky conversation hearts — FAX ME — to all the contrived expressions of affection. Because even though he may have been guilted into going to Jared by jewelry-store ads and chocolate companies and the Hallmark Corporation, I'll bet his heart's in the right place. Usually. Some men really do just suck. Okay, women, too. But mostly men.

Bitterness and cynicism are a real turn-offs. All the anti-Cupid sentiment? I'm anti-that. Yes, we should tell our loved ones how we feel, show them how much they mean to us, every day. But what's wrong with one day out of the year where we go out of our way, go big, to spoil them?

I don't have a big hetero Valentine this year. There's a heart-shaped iron the fire, to be sure, but I'm not jumping to brand anybody for now.

But when I love, I love with my whole heart. Then I write about it. And apparently, the fact that I reveal so very much about myself, my relationships, my feelings, bothers some people. A few weeks ago, after I wrote "Second-Fiddle Girl, a male friend sent me an e-mail. He doesn't read my blog regularly, but some turn of phrase in my many pleas to read it drew him in. And what he found there that day was enough to prompt this: Question: Do you think your blog could be relationship kryptonite? In this day and age, you can Google or FB someone in .3 seconds and find out a good deal before you meet for date number two. Do you think this guy did some background work on you, found your blog and said, "No way; I don't want to be a part of this"? Reason I say that is…I'm a pretty normal guy, and if I saw your blog, I'd be like thanks, but no thanks.

Well. I never.

I never even considered it, actually. Good thing he's not my type. Maybe I have much too high an opinion of myself, but I'm not sure how anything I write here would be seen as a dealbreaker. Yes, I have a cat — we probably shouldn't shack up if you're allergic. Yes, a guy pulled a shady move and hurt my feelings, and I wrote about it — you probably shouldn't screw me over. Yes, I have issues about my weight — you probably shouldn't call me fat. I have the occasional problem with men. With my family. With…posting to Craigslist. I have webbed toes. Okay? Who doesn't? Okay, don't answer that.

Honestly. Men know women are complicated. It's part of our infuriating allure, n'est-ce pas? I'm really no more complicated, no more of a mess than the average woman; I'm just better at articulating my complications. Which — if you think about it — actually demystifies me a little. Because at least you know what you're getting into. Anyone I would want to be with would read my posts and think, "I can deal with that." Better yet, he'd read my posts and think, "I should get to know her better in person." And ideally? He wouldn't be completely batshit. But that's a risk I'm willing to take at the outset. (Something about coordinating baggage?) If some cookie-cutter Ken Doll in Wrigleyville reads my blog and decides not to pursue a relationship with me, more's the better for both of us. I can only listen to so much Dave Matthews Band. I've had people call my tendency to share details about my life problematic. I've been told I have no filter. Boundary issues. So, with varying degrees of success, I've tried to force myself to hold back when I'm first getting to know a guy. (And in saying that out loud, it seems horribly backward?) But I'm not embarrassed about my choices or their consequences — or, if I am, talking about it helps ease my pain. I'm young, okay? I've made some stupid decisions. And I've learned from them. But I've actually made some smart decisions, some brave decisions, and I'm not the type to stay tight-lipped about my successes. I'm not some stupid girl running my mouth because I have a skewed sense of propriety. I like to share things about myself. I'm kind of an oversharer, actually, and that's probably not going to change. I'd love to think I could restrain my flood of personal information to a trickle — I suppose a lesser man could drown in that deluge, and maybe it's cheated me out of a few nice dates — but what comes out comes out, and I'd rather have it out from the get-go and save us all the pain in the end. If I'm going to be too much, I'd rather offer the so-called kiss of death before either one of us gets attached. So pucker up. Go ahead: Read my blog and pass your judgments before you get to know me. Or get the story behind the words. Love's all about choices.

Pick me. Choose me. Love me.

Happy Valentine's Day. Bring on the haters.