Crappentine’s Day. Valen-vomit. A Day in Celebration of the Corporate and Commercial Whores.
Believe me, I’ve heard them all and am still unphased by every one of them. I prefer, in fact, hearing “Happy Crappentine’s Day” to hearing someone blather on (and before I offend anyone too much, I’ve had beef with the Greeting Card Company complaint for years now, so this blog has been a long time comin’) about the commercial birth of the holiday, created by Greeting Card companies in order to make money.
Waah, waah, waah. No, seriously, somebody call the waaaaaaaambulance.
How many of you out there have a diamond ring on your finger, or hope to be presented with one in the future? Do you think that when the De Beers company discovered they could make diamonds more accessible to the public, they didn’t advertise the crap out of the “diamond engagement ring?” Of course they did! Why else would the greater public make the decision to start spending horrific amounts of money on something that was previously tremendously horrific? Because that’s what society decided was valuable, that’s why. How did society come to this decision, you might ask? Oh, yeah, marketing and advertising.
Why do we choose TGI Friday’s over Ruby Tuesday? They’re both mediocre, Americana-clad, family dining establishments.
Wait…Ruby Tuesday has the salad bar… Let’s replace Ruby Tuesday with Applebee’s, in this case.
I can tell you why I (pretending I had previously eaten at neither) would choose one over the other; it’s because I liked the commercial better. Or their gift cards looked more vibrant, or they put off a more family-friendly feel. All advertising, friends, sorry.
Then there’s the very similar argument that celebrating Valentine’s day somehow makes the actual Love less heartfelt and more shallow and materialistic. Okay, that’s fine. So…when a person goes and spends HUNDREDS AND HUNDREDS of dollars on fireworks to celebrate the Fourth of July, are you going to go up to them and say, “Hey, Happy Commercialization of your Patriotism Day?” I don’t think so; in fact, I think you might get punched in the face with a beer can or a bowl of potato salad. That’s because the exact same argument can be used here. “Why do you have to have a special day set aside to celebrate Patriotism? Why can’t you express your patriotism every day without have to buy things for it?”
Or, better yet, “Why do you have to set aside one special day to celebrate the baby Jesus?” Or, “Why do you have to have one special day to celebrate someone’s birth? Why can’t you express how much you appreciate their existence every day in a more heartfelt way?”
Did the Greeting Card companies invent my birthday? I don’t think so.
Granted, I think we could all work harder on expressing our appreciation for things in our daily lives. That’s for sure. You should probably tell your loved ones that you love them more. You should probably be show your patriotism by being more active in you daily civic duties. But does that mean that people should be judged for picking one day to celebrate these things? Hmm…no, I think not.
Now, there is another group of people who hate Valentine’s Day, and I’ve got less of a problem with them; but not much less.
I know that sometimes it sucks to be single. I also know that I’ve probably been pigeon-holed into the category of “smug married,” but, trust me, I remember what it’s like to be single. Especially on Valentine’s Day. And, yeah, I was sad to not have a ‘significant other’ to spend it with.
And then I wised up and realized I did have a significant other. More than one, in fact. I had best friends and family who loved the crap out of me. So, what did my significant others and I do? Slapped on some makeup, got appropriately tipsy, and sang Karaoke till our lungs felt like giving out.
And we had a blast. Why? Because we all knew that even though we didn’t have romantic partners at the time, we DEFINITELY were not alone.
Are you unimpressed with my example? Howsabouts a real-life Facebook status from a good friend of mine:
Valentines Day. Not a fan. But I did have fun making cards with the kids and Adria (her daughter) made one just for me. 🙂
Hey, it’s okay not to like Valentine’s Day. I personally can’t stand the Fourth of July. Some people love it, though, and I’m going to do my best not to be a crabby pants about it. But really, though, I hate firecrackers. They make me want to punch people. I don’t, though, and that’s what’s important.
So why don’t, instead of bashing the holiday today, let’s stop and think about how lucky we are to have Love of any kind in our lives. I promise it will make you feel at the very least an eency-bit better, and even an eency-bit is better than nothing.
Also, you’ll probably avoid getting punched in the face with a bag of red and pink M&M’s.