Valentine's Day: the one day of the year when lovers and not lovers feel the pressure to impress one another with chocolates, stuffed animals, expensive jewelry, and love notes. Valentine's Day: Commercialized Love Day.
Before anyone tags me a V-day hater, I'm still a girl, and I still love all of these things...I just don't necessarily think they are reserved for February 14th. Now, onto my breakdown of Commercialized Love Day...
Valentine's Day is responsible for causing boys and girls to become men and women with a terrible idea of what it means to express like/love. Even Charlie Brown's V-day special sets the precedent that tiny, paper valentine's cards equal social acceptance. I mean, how many of us carefully picked our "cool" designs for V-day cards then sat down with a class list so as not to leave anyone out? I spent quite a bit of time poking suckers through the slats in those darn things and even remember forcing a smile when I handed one to the little boy who liked me but I wished didn't -- there was no option to leave people out; that would just be rude! So, what's my problem with Valentine's Day? Well, you ask good questions, so I'll continue.
Don't get me wrong, the best surprises in the world come in the form of thoughtful gifts, but that doesn't mean they have to cost money or that they have to make their debut 2/14. Heart-shaped mylar balloons inevitably float the halls in local schools and workplaces, and chocolates so numerous they come with box maps sit in every break room. Everyone's smiling, even the couples and friends who fight a good majority of the time, and roses...well, roses fly off shelves in floral shops because you're clearly nobody if you don't have 65 bucks worth of red flowers and baby's breath hanging out on your desk. Who doesn't need another teddy bear holding a cheap, satin-y heart? And let's not forget Necco hearts with strange little messages all over them (I actually love the message hearts because they taste good!); sometimes you get so many boxes of those things that you find them six months later and could kill a man with them -- stale, they're like little brick hearts. Hey baby! "You're cute"...oh, sorry. Did I put your eye out with that candy heart? Oh, and proposals. Good grief. Why, why, why do you people feel it necessary to take a private moment and make it a huge affair by plastering "Will you marry me" on the jumbotron at an NBA game? No one says no to those proposals; talk about painting someone into a corner. Any way, so what's my answer to all of this? Again, you ask such good questions, I'll continue.
Relationships can't survive on Valentine's Day alone. Ladies and Gentlemen alike should work on their relationships (friends or otherwise) 365 days a year. Yes, birthdays and other holidays do make way for spoilage; however, if these days are the only ones that see you being nice and appreciative, then you need to reevaluate the connection. The majority of my problem with V-day applies to romantic relationships. I want to open up my lunchbox on August 5th and see a sweet note. I want to wake up to a "have a great day!" or "good morning sweet girl" text on a Thursday and have it be just because he wanted to send it. I want a random weekday date night to be something simple like a picnic on the floor or Sonic corn dogs and cherry coke just because he knows that's what I like. I want to open up my email on February 13th or 15th and have a nice e-card or message just because he felt compelled...not because society has reserved that day for that particular message. A surprise with my favorite food is a good way to make me smile (this happened to me a couple years ago when I had to teach until 9pm on Valentine's Day, and the 20 minutes we ate sushi together and the homemade card made my day). I guess what this all boils down to is that Valentine's Day can be fun: I'm a girl: I love chocolate, stuffed animals, jewelry, sweet notes, etc. But, it shouldn't be the only day. V-day means so much more if every other day of the year is a love day, too. Waking up on February 14th only to expect you'll receive some grandiose display of affection is ultimately dissatisfying if you're in a relationship where the other 364 days are essentially meaningless. So what's your display of affection MO?
Please enjoy V-day. Eat your chocolate, smell the roses (if you're me, you prefer cheaper, prettier flowers in wild colors!), and gush over the cards. If I get anything, I certainly will :) Just don't feel obligated to give if your obligation fails to extend Feb. 15th this year until Feb. 13th next. Take my opinion for what you paid for it. Happy Commercialized Love Day, y'all.