YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Need a Little Help? Here's Where to Look for Inspiration


T.S. Eliot was wrong. April isn't the cruelest month; February is much worse. The pitfalls of the 14th are numerous, and getting ready requires quite the preparation. So to help, here's a very random sampling of what's out there:

On the Internet:

* all-purpose site that will help you: 1) Fall in love or at least go on a date; 2) buy Viagra; 3) send a digital card.

* personal ads with pictures.

* virtual Cyrano de Bergerac offers creative juice and will write a love letter for you.

* virtual pillow talk. "Just choose the fantasy, then fill in the form. A personalized erotic fiction will be created for your approval."

New in print:

* The ubiquitous Dr. Ruth kicks in some advice in "Rekindling Romance for Dummies" (IDG Books Worldwide). Chapters include "How to Win Your Mate All Over Again" and "Troubleshooting Your Love Life." Page 69 offers this advice: "There's romance, and then there's sex. . . . You should think of them as two separate ingredients, like lox and cream cheese, that complement each other when placed on a bagel but which can also stand alone." 'Nuff said.

* If the guy of your dreams is playing hard to get, go over his head with "How to Turn Your Boyfriend Into a Love Slave and Other Spells," by Deborah Gray (Harper San Francisco). He'll end up thanking you.

* If your honey's away today, you may want to pick up "The Long Distance Romance Guide" (Writers Club Press) by romance coach Leslie Karsner for tips on how to celebrate the romance even when you're apart.


* Best place to break up: "Any of the real trendy bars has to be a good place to break up," says Chris Hoffman, who compiled "Shecky's Bar, Club and Lounge Guide--Los Angeles" (Hangover Media, 2000). "Everyone's so good-looking that you just look around, and think, 'Ah, I'll just find someone else.' " He particularly recommends Formosa Cafe on Santa Monica Boulevard and Skybar at the Mondrian Hotel on Sunset. "You want as many people around as possible. There's less of a chance of the other person making a scene," he advises.

* Best place to make up: It's all about lighting, says Hoffman, who recommends Jones Hollywood on Santa Monica Boulevard and Daddy's on Vine Street, also in Hollywood. "You can hide in the corner as you beg for the other person back."

* Wildest gift idea: The Hustler store has gone one better than Ally McBeal's vibrating bra with "The Remote Controlled Vibrating Panty," high-tech lingerie "designed for comfort and long distance thrill." Should make those long flights to the East Coast more bearable.

* Chocolate consumption: Americans' annual consumption of more than 3.1 billion pounds works out to about 11.7 pounds per person. But that's nothing compared with the 29.5 pounds the Danes consume, the highest in the world, according to the Chocolate Manufacturer's Assn.

Los Angeles Times Articles