Be my Valentine…or not

Going to contradict myself this week…making this disclaimer now before I get any of those “Hey, but that’s not what you said…” emails. Save your hands from carpal tunnel, I’m aware of my hypocrisy!

Just finished writing my Wednesday Wisdom for shesheme, all on Valentine’s Day. Took me longer than usual, for the following reasons:

1. Am truly not a huge fan of the day. Either have been unfortunate enough to be boyfriend-less on the V-day in the past, or have been soured by more than a few sub-par occasions. Either way, 97% of them have been at least moderately disappointing in one way or another, leading to an air of nonchalance that I at least attempt to portray.

2. Am actually looking forward to this year’s V-Day. Don’t know if hallucinogenic drugs are to play here but felt a sense of quasi-excitement over Feb. 14th this year. Perhaps a result of my article, perhaps a result of the warm weather we’re having in January, but the sense of impending doom and gloom, usually tied to the first Feb. Fortnight, hasn’t begun. (Yet.)

3. Long week. Brain dead.

Any combination of the three could be at cause here, but in doing some investigating for my article, I came upon some interesting facts.

Mainly, guys want to forget this day. They want US to forget this day. They want it to go away.

When asked about what they would want for Valentine’s Day, besides a few unmentionable x-rated requests (funny, the majority of them were identical!) they wanted to get out of celebrating this day. Claiming it as a made-up holiday (true, actually…) they were less-than-enthused about the seemingly obligatory role they were to play in this year’s festivities.

These were single guys, committed guys, married guys…all just truly couldn’t care less, and looked to this as a burden rather than an anticipated event.

Onto the girls. Quizzed them about what they would like (or what they would give their sig. others), and found the majority of them a lot more receptive. Traditionally a “girl’s holiday,” most were used to being treated to dinner, flowers, chocolates…the whole nine yards. And yes, boys, they liked it. (And no, boys, they will NOT be giving you your x-rated request. Maybe next year.)

So what does this lead us to? Girls wasting their money on guys? Boys being hostile and bitter about shelling out a hundred bucks for some flowers that will be dead by the weekend? Somehow, it doesn’t seem all that fun anymore.

Valentine’s Day used to be about making homemade mailboxes, covering a shoebox with construction paper hearts, doilies, and markers. (After your cousin stopped eating all the paste, that is…) You would go around the classroom, dropping your He-Man or My Little Pony-branded Valentines in everyone else’s box. Even the teacher had one pre-made in your pack of 20+1 SUPER COLOR VALENTINES for only $2.99! I bought myself a box of these this year, trying to get myself back into that elementary-school feeling. I’ll let you know how it goes.

But I digress. Is this “holiday,” whether a true or conceived-by-Hallmark-for-revenue one, worth it? I don’t even want to think about how many arguments are caused by less-than-desirable presents (who ever heard of a Dust Devil as a romantic gift!?) It could, and should, be so much simpler.

Instead of the flowers, the candy, the stupid little teddy bears that end up stuffed in the back of the closet (too cheezy to keep out, too guilty to throw away), why not this year send a thoughtful card? Not a pre-written-messaged one, complete with “Love, Bob” on the bottom (that is NOT a message, my dear), but one that actually expressed how you feel? Girls, if you miss your boyfriend since he travels all the time, tell him. Guys, if you don’t think you let her know that you DO appreciate her, hey, why not say it now? Yes, I know…the potential for embarrassment and vulnerability is great. But in a day when war rages around the world, when disease threatens our ultimate survival, when we know we DO only live once, what are we waiting for? Better to have loved and lost, and all that…

That said, am LOVING myself these flowers. (Was that a hint? Hmm…)

Happy end-of-January, and it’s never too early (or too late!) to do your Valentine’s shopping!!



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