Suddenly, you're dreading answering the phone and listening to his/her plaintive voice. Or he/she is picking on every little thing. With Valentine's Day coming up, it's better to break up before that artificially contrived holiday if things are on the outs. Get with your friends for an anti-Valentine's Day party instead.
But first, you need to find a place to dissolve this lingering relationship. Since Carrie Bradshaw wailed about being dumped on a Post-it, cross off that possibility. Ditto for phone break ups and e-mails. You've got to do the deed in person, preferably in a low-key, unromantic spot. Don't choose an expensive restaurant though. Depending on who leaves first, you might end up with the check.
If your aim is an amiable break up, one of the happiest restaurants in Charlotte -- or Pineville in this case -- is the Waldhorn, a German restaurant. Plan to break the news on a Friday or Saturday night when live music enlivens the space. You two can reminisce about the good times and end with a piece of tasty Black Forest Cake and a kiss auf wiedersehen.
Waldhorn Restaurant, 12101 Lancaster Hwy., Pineville, 704-540-7047.
Delis are some of the best break-up spots. They're public and brightly lit so you can see all your soon-to-be ex's flaws. McAlister's Deli is a good place, since you don't have to contend with a nosy server. Here, you order at the counter and the runner delivers your food.
McAlister's Deli, 4130 Carmel Road, 704-540-7199. Other locations across the city.
If, however, you want table service and privacy, go to one of the ethnic restaurants where servers are not fluent in English. This way you are waited on, plus your conversation will be private and uninterrupted. Below are two suggestions.
Linares Mexican Restaurant, 4918 Central Ave., 704-535-6716.
Taqueria Guadalajara, 4517 N. Tryon St., 704-596-2239.
If your significant other wants to settle down and spawn but you don't, consider breaking it off in an overly child-friendly, casual place -- try Bob Evans with its smiley-faced potatoes. Of course, after 30 minutes you both may decide you have more in common than you thought.
Bob Evans, everywhere.
Women only: If your mind has been wandering to that hunky guy at the gym and you're thinking it's time to dump your boyfriend but you really can't find any valid reason aside from your own lust, take the dumpee to the Capital Grille. The Charlotte location is notorious for excessively flirty female servers. Wait until the auspicious moment when your server is being particularly forward with him (and rude to you) and stand up with the announcement that you're tired of his immature behavior and leave. Take your gym clothes with you.
Capital Grille, 201 N. Tryon St., 704-348-1400.