valentine's spillover

Girls like flowers and chocolates; boys like blowjobs and spliffs. It's a sharp line all right, and yet such a staple of our society it's almost become hackneyed--especially around Valentine's Day, when it seems like every dude is getting his little girly-girl some roses, and every chick is firing up a toke and sucking her man off. If you, like me, are bored of these petty frivolities (or, like me, are "in between hump-buddies" and tired of being excluded) then it's probably high time for a little Valentine's Day detour.

If you're a freak or a kink, stub out the joint, throw on some leather and chains, and head on down to the Fetish Masquerade Ball (Roseland, 9 pm, $20) for some super hard, super creepy, super sexy fetish bands. The theatrical southern band Impotent Sea Snakes headlines the event, following the body modification art of Shift SS (NOT for the weak of stomach, allegedly). A literal ton of other acts join them, including Apocalypstick, the baton-twirling Fire Brigade, Popewyrm, Written In Ashes, Wakeworld, Sumerland, and a bunch more.

Maybe you're not a fetishist, but one of those gents who likes to give or get BJs from other gents. Or maybe you're a lady who doesn't "do BJs" because you're too busy carpet-munching. If so, you'll probably dig the Black Hearts Dance for Queers (Whatever Lounge, 9 pm, $2.99), a sordid evening of spankings, floggings, raffles, and games of Spin the Bottle. Deejays Puppet and Zanne will spin some sexy tunes, and discounts will be awarded for "fashion excess."

Too delicate to handle the fetishists and the homos? Try joining the hoity toits at the Portland International Film Fest Opening Night Party (Portland Art Museum, 9:30 pm, $15), beginning after the last screening. See the Portland premiere of Laurel Canyon, the upcoming Frances McDormand/Kate Beckinsale/Christian Bale flick about a guy, his fiancée, and his hard rockin' mom, or one of the three other films playing (see Film Times for details), and then head on over to the Art Museum to dance and eat cheese.

If all else fails, free to unload your angst regarding flowery, stony Valentine's hanky panky by rocking really hard to the tune of the fittingly-named Exploding Hearts (Blackbird, 9 pm, $6), a spunky, hard charging '80s-punk throwback trio. If they can't fix you right, then one of the five other bands playing with them (that's right: six bands for six bucks!) will at least give you something different to look at on this gloomy, gloomy day. JUSTIN SANDERS