“I don’t understand why Cupid was chosen to represent Valentine’s Day. When I think about romance, the last thing on my mind is a short, chubby toddler coming at me with a weapon.” – Unknown
Ain’t that the truth. I wasn’t going to recognize this holiday on my blog, but then I saw the above quote on Facebook and thought it was cute. Same with the picture (stolen from my friend Scott’s profile page…thanks, dushi!).
Actually, I don’t really care for the Valentine holiday generally. Or, more accurately, I greatly dislike the commercialization and competitiveness of it all. I remember way back when, in the days I worked in an office, how, on February 14th, all the women would wait expectantly for the onslaught of flowers, candy, and/or gifts from their guy. There was an unspoken competition among all of these otherwise-rational ladies to see whose gift would be the grandest. Better than all the rest. Surely the size of the gift was a direct statement of the size of of the love this woman enjoyed, right? God help the lady without a boyfriend/husband/significant other during this particular competition.
I remember getting two dozen absolutely stunning long-stemmed red roses one year from my now-ex. At first I was speechless, because the flowers were perfectly arranged and absolutely gorgeous. Then I was embarrassed by the “over-the-top” nature of the gift (I hate to draw attention to myself). Finally, I was irritated at the amount of money I suspected was spent on such an extravagant show (I grew up without a lot of resources…that sort of affects your view on certain things).
I thanked him, of course, but also nicely asked that he refrain from such actions in the future. Don’t get me wrong. I love flowers and I love getting them. But not on Valentine’s Day. And not roses. Especially on Valentine’s Day. They are ridiculously overpriced. The practical side of me thinks money can be spent in much better ways. I suspect I am in the minority in my feelings about this, but whatever. You have to live an authentic life, and two dozen very expensive roses delivered to me anytime (but especially on Valentine’s Day) just isn’t my thing.
And flowers aside, there are 364 other days of the year where you can demonstrate to me how much you love me. How much you want me in your life. How much you care about me.
Like standing on the beach at sunset, disheveled from a day of kitesurfing, with your arms around my shoulders, telling me I am a lovely person and that you really love me. That sort of impromptu (and free) display (especially from a man reticent to show emotion) is worth more to me than all the roses in the world, actually.
And it didn’t even happen on Valentine’s Day. See what I mean?