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Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Anti-Valentine's Day

It's Valentine's Day ... again ... a made-up 'holiday' devoted to sappy cards, overpriced flowers and candy, and high expectations.

For me, Valentine's Day is akin to Christmas in its commercialism and hype. The airwaves and newspapers are filled with gushing ads for cards, flowers, jewelry and candy. These adds imply that if we don't get a huge bunch of red roses, or an expensive piece of jewelry, or a fancy dinner, we aren't loved. There must be something wrong with us. We must be a bunch of losers. Since when is love measured or determined by how expensive a gift someone gives us? Is our value or worthiness really dependent on what kind of, and how expensive, the gifts we receive on this made-up holiday?

I never went in for Valentine's Day, even when I was married. It just seems stupid to make such a big deal of one day of the year. Should we not be letting those we love know that we love them every day of the year? What is the point of this made-up holiday, except to those who sell cards, candy, flowers and jewelry to make a bigger profit?

I love my daughter, and I try to show my love throughout the year. I don't buy her a card or chocolates for Valentine's Day. But I do show my love through little things -- taking her out for dinner, picking up a favorite food at the grocery store, being supportive and available to listen when she needs to talk, buying her a voucher for a massage, driving to the restaurant where she works to provide change for the cash register. Bet you won't see a $5 Hallmark card gushing about these things. 

I also love my dog. I don't need to buy anything special for her to show my love. I do that every day, by taking her for a walk, by giving her the special food she needs, by providing the medication she needs to keep her free of seizures, and by spending time with her.

I am tired of the commercialism that is rampant in our society, as exemplified by the constant harping about finding "the perfect gift" at Christmas or "He went to Jared" for that expensive piece of jewelry for Valentine's Day. And apparently I'm not the only person fed up with this so-called holiday. There is an anti-Valentine's Day movement, complete with anti-Valentine's Day cards ("Cupid rhymes with stupid" is just one example) and quotes (“Happy phony, romanticized, overly commercial, sucks to be single, pretend that it's love, day!”)

What this day really needs is an expression similar to Bah Humbug!  Until somebody comes up with such an expression, I will close with this anonymous quote:

“I wish that Valentine's Day came with a fast-forward button...”