A sweet, empty holiday

“Happy Valentine’s Day” is the greeting on everyone’s lips today. Unless you’re below the age of ten or just like a bit of child-like fun in celebrating this day, it’s not cute to get into all the hype.

If you’re a woman in a relationship, today would be the day (perhaps the only time in a year) when you’d receive flowers, chocolates and love notes/cards from your man. Perhaps there would be some movie watching involved with a dinner in a fancy restaurant to cap the evening. Tonight you’d have to pretty yourself up (even if you don’t feel like it) just so people won’t say that the guy you’re with made a mistake of getting stuck with ordinary little you.

For a guy in a relationship, it would mean some costly last-minute shopping for the obligatory candies and flowers and the aforementioned movie and dinner. You’d have to shell out major bucks so that your girl won’t feel like she got a raw deal by being with a cheapskate of a man. Hopefully, you’ll get lucky by the end of the evening to make everything worth your while (maybe even if it’s only a big heartfelt kiss).

If you’re single, this day is made worse by the reminders of being part of a couple. Everywhere you look you see couples holding hands, kissing and sharing chocolates. Everyone seem to be heading somewhere, off to have a romantic time together. They’re oblivious to you, poor single person unfortunate enough to be left alone in the gene pool on this special day.

What’s this hoopla about Valentine’s day anyway? So it’s a day dedicated to St. Valentine, big deal. According to an entry to Wikipedia, there are three different St. Valentines (a priest in Rome, a bishop in Interamna and a martyr in North Africa) and legend has it that Pope Gelasius I declared February 14 as the feast of St. Valentine (which one he was referring to is unclear, or perhaps all three) to supercede a pagan fertility festival called Lupercalia celebrated on February 15. The saint’s feast day was removed from the Church calendar in 1969.

Today, it’s nothing more than a commecial ploy to get your hard-earned dollars into the pockets of business owners. Why do we need a holiday to remind us that we’re lucky to have someone there for us through thick and thin? Why should we have to be obliged to buy flowers and chocolates on this day when we could do that everyday anyway? Why buy into all this fake fervor and think that it’s an expression of love?

To me, the holiday could be likened to the chocolates that are being exchanged around the globe on this day. It’s expensive, sweet, addictive and makes you feel good but in the end it’s just all empty calories with too much sugar in it.

If you’re in a relationship, how about arranging a day of the week for a special night-out (specially good for those already with kids), trying to surprise your mate with the odd chocolate, flower, love note (take your pick!) on a random day which would be better appreciated because it meant you weren’t just pressured to give it because of a silly holiday when everyone else is doing it.

For those who’re single and may be tired of hearing this over and over again, enjoy it while you can. This is the period in your life when you’re free to do anything and everything you wish. Why not try a new hobby, read more, exercise more, get out and enjoy life. Think of this as your preparation phase to finding the right one so that when you do finally find him/her, you’d be a more interesting, confident and well-rounded person than you were on your previous relationships.

Buying into the hype of Valentine’s day sometimes cheapens it, you don’t need a holiday to remind you to appreciate yourself (and your partner) everyday.

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Published in: on February 14, 2005 at 12:40 am  Leave a Comment