Who likes Valentine’s Day?
I would assume the majority of St. V’s revelers are comprised of a screaming zombified horde of single women, teenage girls and various other females getting the blunt end of the shitty relationship stick. Of course elementary school children enjoy the candies passed around their classrooms too.
Yes. Before you scream about how misogynistic my opinions are, there are indeed some men who celebrate the almighty Hallmark/Flowershop/Candy/Jewelry day of worship. I remember being lonely and single on the holiday and writing some alarmingly awful poems and songs about it. In high school there seemed to be no limits to the pain blossoming through my chest on February 14th. Not only did I not have any girlfriends back then, most of my friends did and they had the audacity to publicly display their affections right in front of broken hearted losers like me. How dare they be happy? I mean, really.
We barely have a moment to catch our collective post-Christmahanukwansika breaths when the tsunami of “You suck as a husband/boyfriend if you don’t spend three month’s pay on this hideous excuse for jewelry/flower bouquet/box-o-chocolates/Vermont Teddy Bear” commercials. I assume most of this advertising is directed at the male portion of my previously mentioned shitty relationships that do not understand how their partners might require some semblance of positive emotional reinforcement once in a while during the other 364 days of the year. The recipients of these gifts are so grateful for any symbol of romance at all that they seemingly forgive any lack of creative thought or originality in the expression whatsoever.
These doorknobs are easily picked out in crowds. Here’s a list of a few things to look for that are dead giveaways:
· Chocolate Diamonds (Really? Isn’t this just another way of marketing dirty, shit colored ugly ass jewelry?)
· Jane Seymore’s Open Heart Swan Necklace (Wow. I repeat, Wow!)
· Charm Bracelets worn by anyone over the age of fifteen (Need I say more?)
· Someone bragging about the romantic dinner they had at Red Lobster/Olive Garden/Applebee’s/Fisherman Willie’s Chumfest-o-Yumminess
· Cubic Zirconia
Romance shouldn’t be something we need a designated holiday for. Unfortunately, as a culture we do. I doubt St. Valentine would appreciate the high percentage mark up on all things reddish pink or shiny without a kickback in his direction.
What about us guys? We need stuff too right? Lingerie works. Gift certificates for football tickets. Video games. Computer stuff. Monster Truck Rally. Porn. We’re pretty easy to figure out. Nevermind.
Personally, I can’t begin to describe how lucky I am that my wife doesn’t buy into the advertising onslaugt. She doesn’t wear much jewelry and hates flowers “because they die”. When I was able to, I sent gifts to her office and even bought her a Tiffany necklace once. I remember the joy in her face when she saw the powder blue box. She even cried. So really, I guess she does buy into it a little bit.
I try not to need a holiday to make sure I express my love for her. I tell her over and over again. I show it in ways that don’t require spending money that I just don’t have. I wash the dishes, make sure the kids aren’t covered in too thick a layer of dirt before they go to school, vacuum on occasion and try to make dinner that is somewhat digestible. You know, things she tells me she appreciates. That does require a skill unnatural to most of my gender: Listening. Paying attention to what she says from time to time. Apparently that’s something important to remember.
Hey Melissa? I Love You! Forever and Ever and Ever No Matter What! And I’ll get right on that thing you asked me to do. (Once I remember what it was.)
Who likes Valentine's Day?
(By my wonderful wife who truly is the Better Half of our relationship)
Young people. Young people in love. Early relationships.
Who hates Valentine's Day? Singles. No matter the gender. Married couples - with kids, a mortgage and mounting debt...
Ok. Ok. Hate is a strong word.
What I'm trying to say is this:
It's easy to tell your partner that diamonds, chocolates and flowers aren't needed. How can you justify spending money on flowers that are just going to die anyway - when we need to keep the power on, keep the cable on, keep food on the table, pay the landlord/bank? It doesn't make you a bad person if you cannot afford the latest and greatest "chocolate diamonds!" or a schlub if you have the money to buy it either.
What matters? Being there for each other. Not buying into the commercial guilt that you didn't buy <fill in the blank here>. Being there. Every day. No matter what. And if you have the side-salad-cash to spring for some blossoms -- go for it.
I don't subscribe to the "The Bachelor/ The Bachelorette" show mentality. I once did. However I'm not longer that show's demographic. Life changes. Needs change. Priorities change.
I remember being in high school and seeing the popular girls getting balloons, flowers, candies... and I didn't. It hurt - like someone had taken an ice cream scooper to my chest kind of hurt. However, there were times when I did get flowers and friends did not. And secretly I was brimming with joy that it was finally my turn.
I hope that Valentine's Days for my boys are more joy than heartbreak as they make it through the next few years. But I refuse to jade them. This is the age when Valentine's Day is still magical. Love is a simple card and conversation hearts. Soon enough they will be inundated with the Kay Jeweler's commercials and might want to get some girl a bracelet or something - and I'll be there to help if they need it. Pure. Simple. Joy.
a point counterpoint (not an argument) regarding who likes Valentine's Day (i repeat: not an argument!)
something interesting about me goes right...here