Monday, February 14, 2011

In Defence of Valentines Day

I like Valentine's Day.

There, I said it. Let the hate mail commence.

I like the cards, flowers, and all of the little gestures that come along with it. I'm not going to pretend I don't, because I do. I know we're supposed to love each other every single day, 365 days a year, but here's the thing: life gets in the way. When you're tired, you have a deadline at work, the dog just spilled the garbage can, your spouse left the toilet seat up (again...), and you're changing junior's 3rd diaper before 8am, how many people are thinking "I love ____. I'm going to do _____ to show them how I feel."? Very few. If you do, kudos. My hat's off to you, but you are a statistical anomaly.

If your entire focus on this day is the price of (admittedly overpriced) roses, or how much Hallmark is wringing out of your wallet, you're missing the point. If she loves you, a piece of paper folded in half with some heartfelt words on it is going to mean just as much to her, if not more, than a purchased card. Does she NEED a card? Well, no, but it is a nice sentiment. Same with flowers. Do you NEED to buy flowers from a florist who is making a killing off you for a very brief couple weeks in February? No. (Though if you do want to get flowers, check out Costco. Really good selection, way cheaper) If the shelf life of roses irks you, why not do something about it?

Why not make the flowers?

Out of duct tape?

Silvery duct tape flowers.

I think I'd propose on the spot to the guy who ever made me those....

Why are these things important to me anyway? Am I a materialistic prima donna? (Wait, don't answer that, my consumer debt isn't really helping my argument here) I'm going to go with no. Valentines Day was something that did get a bit of focus in my family though. My parents celebrated it, as did my grandparents. When I was a kid, my dad worked 2 day jobs, while going to school in the evening so he could get a better job. My mom looked after the farm, baked bread to sell at one of the stores in town, and looked after my sister and I. They were obviously very busy, and very tired. Valentine's Day was one day that come hell or high water the rat race took the back seat to the fact that they were in love and wanted to celebrate that. No one lamented over the price of a card, or snorted in derision at the shelf life of flowers. They are simply appreciated, and they are a beautiful display of the affection my parents share for each other.

Now, I've started seeing someone over the last couple weeks. Do I expect the same grand sweeping gestures my dad tries to show my mom? Of course not. But, we are going out tonight. We're going skating. It doesn't cost us anything, but it's special to me because we're making a point of seeing each other today. Like most people, I see him mostly on the weekend when there is more free time. Seeing him today is a little gesture that makes me incredibly happy, because if it wasn't for the fact that it is Valentine's Day today, I'd probably just see him again next weekend.

That little bow and quiver of arrows may have had some questionable aim over the last couple years, but I'm not going to hold it against the chubby little cherub. In fact, I support him. The little bugger has his heart in the right place, which is exactly what I hope for everyone else today. Happy Valentines Day everyone. Go show someone you care.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Valentine's Day is a personal thing, and I don't really care how anyone else chooses to celebrate/not celebrate it.

My ultimate problem with the holiday is 1) prices are jacked up through the roof and 2) it seems like people think spending money on roses that cost 400% more just because it's Valentine's Day means they *really* love their partner/spouse. I don't like the idea that you have to spend money on a holiday to show someone you care... Obviously you and new boy are doing something fun and free just to spend time together. THAT'S what I think Valentine's Day should be about. :)