My amazing wife of over three decades and I have celebrated a total of one Valentine’s day. Our first. I showed up at her apartment and she handed me two wrapped boxes. I asked what these were for. Needless to say she was devastated. So, to make it up to her, a took her downstairs to our favorite bar, paid for a pitcher of dark beer and an order of fried cheese curds, and played the one video game the bar had. She soon forgot about my lack of enthusiasm for the holiday.
Before you all jump on me as being a total ass, let me explain a few key points.
1) I was in college and broke. (See #2 below)
2) We usually pitched in for the beer and cheese curds so, it was special that I paid for the whole evening. (She had a job, I did not.)
3) Once she realized my reasons for not celebrating this silly holiday, she has never complained. Not once in our entire marriage. When the boss is happy, I’m happy!!!
My apathy towards Valentine’s Day began in elementary school. We were required to give EVERYONE of the opposite gender, in our class a valentine. That included the really smart girl sitting in front who always laughed at me when I gave the wrong answers and my ex-first love who jilted me at the swing set during recess. The words, “Be my valentine” simply were not believable. This went on until Jr. High School when open rebellion by the boys of the class ended this requirement. Oh we still gave a few to the girls we really liked, or the ones we secretly wanted to spend more time with. Ah, young love! 😉
Fast forward ahead to college. Like most college students, I began questioning everything, from religion and politics to media and the reasons for holidays. Radical thinking was the order of the day. So when the subject of this holiday came up, the reasons to not celebrate it were easy. Driven , like most holidays, by the retail industry and the media, flower and candy stores generate most of their annual revenues from this one day. Jewelry stores also rake in the profits from men who are cowed into buying their “sweetheart” a bauble.
I asked myself what is the purpose of this holiday. Beside keeping the jewelry, candy, and flower industries in business, it is to show love and affection to the one(s) we care about the most.
Next question: Why do we set aside one day a year to do this?
Answer: Is it because we are too lazy or self-centered to show these individuals how we feel throughout the year. That, to me, is completely unacceptable behavior!
Maybe I’m wrong here, but when I found someone I really cared about, I went out of my way to show them how I felt throughout the year. I still do. Waiting for one day in February as just too long to wait. Gentlemen, I apologize if I set the bar high here. But, this is one area of great importance to me. It’s actually easier than trying to remember one day in February. Ladies, If your man treats you well and shows you how he feels throughout the year, give him a little slack if he drops the ball in February. It’s only one day for crying out loud.
My beautiful wife gets “Happy Saturday” presents, girls nights out, sparkling baubles, various kinds of fresh-baked shortbread, and even the occasional massage. They come to her throughout the year without warning. On the flip side, I am regularly surprised with “Happy Saturday” presents, archery/hunting equipment, boys night out, time to write, and occasionally my favorite home-cooked meal. This reminds me of “un-birthdays” from Alice in Wonderland.
So, instead of celebrating Valentine’s Day, celebrate un-Valentine’s Day with me 364 days a year.
Happy Un-Valentine’s Day!!!