Post Valentine’s Day

Linda1I tried, really I tried.

The idea of being enthusiastic about Valentine’s Day simply left me cold. First, it is somewhat a made up holiday intended to force lovers, wanna be lovers, not so much lovers, school children and others to pretend one day a year. Pretend what you ask. Well pretend to remember to say the stuff they forgot all the rest of the year in most cases, in the case of schoolchildren, pretend they are grown enough to “wooove” someone and give them little hearts with cute sayings on them.

Don’t get me wrong, Valentine’s Day can be fun. It can bring out the romantic in even the most taciturn of men, with some prodding. It can turn even the most practical of women to mush with the right amount of flowers, chocolate and a great foot massage. Valentine’s Day can provide couples the opportunity to remind each other they are still there, still hanging on.

The problem I have with Valentine’s Day?

It simply feels forced. Why do we need a day to tell each other we appreciate the things we are to each other? Shouldn’t we do this every single day of the year?image2474170x

Then there is the problem I have that we have co-opted a Catholic Saints day as our romantic holiday, a martyred saint no less. Of course, there is no historical connection between either St. Valentine and ‘romantic’ love, in fact there is very little written about them, anywhere. It is far more likely Valentine’s Day comes to us from an early Roman Rite, the festival of Lupercalia. This was a special one, priests would sacrifice a goat and a dog together, mixing their blood then flay the goats hide into strips, dipping that into the mixed blood. After that, they would slap single women and crops with the bloody strips, and then pair the women with bachelors for the year. The premise being if the women were fruitful they would marry, maybe.

150953_10202867023217165_1478976694_nJust so, we are all clear, the first Valentine’s card was sent by the then imprisoned Duke of Orleans in 1415. So this silliness has been around for a very long time.

As I said, I tried. I have never though been very good with Valentine’s Day. Maybe it was my name I was traumatized early on, we all have Valentine in our name somewhere. My mother had no clue what she did to us putting us in the local paper. Personally? I just like the sales on chocolate on February 15.

Growing Up Valentine

Vinegar Valentine

Teachers sucked, for some reason growing up Valentine meant I was supposed to be more attuned to Valentine’s Day than others in my class. My mother was supposed to make cupcakes and heart shaped cookies (she couldn’t bake well the rest of the year why should now be different) and I was supposed to like my classmates more on this day.

I didn’t like them more and didn’t enjoy the theater of handing out paper dollies with “Be My Valentine” to 28 sniveling brats.

As I got older, it didn’t get better, if anything it got worse. The jokes got stupider, the idiocy of a day ‘just for me’ got even more ridiculous.

Really? Hallmark made a day just for me and wrapped it up with Red and Pink hearts and romantic chocolate, how did they know? Obviously they didn’t ask me; I hated pink, wasn’t very good at romantic gestures either.

These days when asked how to spell my name, I reference the massacre in Chicago; unfortunately the reference is usually to obscure for anyone but those who enjoy Gangster movies.

Growing up Valentine did have an upside though, at least one day a year besides my birthday I usually could get a free drink at the neighborhood bar.

 

 

Hope your Hallmark day is fabulous.

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