Did you know that St. Valentine was eaten by lions? True story.
Generally, Valentine’s Day is the day that usually ends the season of breakups, which usually starts before Christmas. As with all relationships ending, the reasons vary, but I think that a lot of the ones that end around this time tend to be for commitment reasons (such as meeting their SO’s family). That being said, this period also has the highest number of couples proposing or tying the knot, so I guess it evens out…but I’m not going to talk about those couples. THIS IS AN ANTI-VALENTINE’S DAY RANT AFTER ALL!
My friend, Michael, and I used to bet on the number of breakups we would see (largely from my Facebook or my group of friends because Michael didn’t believe in the social media thing and I had a huge group of acquaintances and friends to look at), starting from around the middle of December and ending on St. Valentine’s Death Day. The winner got…I don’t even think we bet anything because I think it was more for the fact that we wanted to secure our places as worst love grinches in the world. And kudos, I guess.
Every year, February 14th commemorates my parents’ wedding anniversary and my sister’s birthday. I’ve only ever had a girlfriend (never a date) for this day three times, and truth be told, we never really celebrated that much on those days. I’ve never believed in “Hallmark Holidays”, as Michael (the same from above) used to call them. I tolerate Christmas because it’s a time for family and presents…who doesn’t love presents? V-Day on the other hand, has become a day for undue stress for many men and women in committed relationships and the whole concept seems silly because if you were actually in love and/or committed to each other, why do you need a specific day to prove to the other person that you really, truly, love them? Some people try to convince me that it’s actually a day to celebrate love and that “real couples” just take it as another day, no stress.
How are you supposed to relax when every restaurant in town is a madhouse and you need to have made a reservation 6 months ago, every card is cliche and been done before (go watch that bit in 500 Days of Summer if you haven’t seen it before), every florist decides to jack up their prices for a one or two week duration on both sides, year by year your significant other expects something different or better than the previous year (unless you’re actually a married couple with many years under your belt and you have a “usual thing”, in which case, props to you two)…the list goes on.
What brought this rant on? Here’s irony for you: I planned a random trip to Paris, city of love, and am spending Valentine’s Day alone here. Bah, humbug. I know when you see the word “rant”, you expect to see two to three thousand words, and I could go on and on about it, but I want to get my point across and I try to think myself a fairly efficient writer most, if not all, the time.
All the same, I’m (slowly) trying to change my mentality. Tomorrow, if there’s enough time left in the day, instead of executing my previously mentioned plan, I’m going to buy a dozen roses and hand them out to random women in the street, telling them in (bad) French how beautiful they are and to have a happy
singles’ awareness Valentine’s Day.
Edit (February 15th, 2013):
I didn’t buy a dozen roses because all the roses in every bouquet were tiny, so I bought three, much nicer looking, long-stemmed roses instead. I then camped out in front of Cathédrale Notre Dame de Paris, and gave them to three women; two were French (so all I could do was stumble a little bit with the language), and one was American and I explained myself and moved on. I wasn’t looking for anything more than a smile and a “thank you” and it felt really nice to do. Maybe there is something to this Valentine’s Day thing after all.
Photo credit: Astrology and Crystals