Tuesday, February 13, 2007

That Valentine Thing

It's that day again - the one I loved until I hit 11 or 12, hated from 13 until my early twenties & have learned to love again. When I was a kid, I always got an enormous box of chocolates from my dad and an even more enormous card - usually a Peanuts cartoon one. A few years ago, my mom found an old Valentine's Day card my dad had gotten for me and sent it to me. Brought back some great memories.

Starting in junior high, the whole Valentine's Day thing got ugly. I think it was those damn carnations. You know the ones...red ones meant "I love you," white ones for "I like you" and the ubiquitous yellow ones for "friends." Delivered in one of the early morning classes, it was a walk of wonder for the cutie girls and the walk of shame for the less popular kids. Awful to the point that even a dreaded yellow carnation was preferable to nothing. Horrible, horrible.

As I hit high school and moved into college, I started seeing Valentine's Day as a total farce, cooked up by florists, chocolatiers, jewelry stores and Hallmark. I'm not saying I didn't get some lovely gifts, I'm just saying I felt manipulated and really hated the holiday. I'm sure junior high had something to do with it, but it all felt like some bizarre fake contest to see who had the bestest boyfriend or girlfriend based on the cost of the loot obtained. Did I mention I was a bit of a cynic?

And yet...I feel a little differently today. Valentine's Day doesn't have to be a commercialized freak show unless we let it. What's wrong with letting your sweetie know that you love him or her madly? What's wrong with letting your friends and family know that they hold a special place in your heart? Really, what's so funny about peace, love and...well, hopefully you know the rest of the Costello line or you're more messed up than I can offer help for!

I don't care at all about hearts, flowers, or jewelry (though chocolate is ALWAYS nice!), but I dig having a whole day dedicated to showing love through words and actions. That's tres coolio and no damn card company is going to stop me from enjoying it. Here's wishing you all lots of love in all its varied forms this Valentine's Day!


At 12:41 PM, Blogger dink said...

Nice post.

Lots of V-day seems to have little to do with love (especially the whole carnation thing you describe) but we can make it about love, iffen we wanna.

I am off to a picnic in the woods with champagne (at NOON! ha) with ol' He Who Shall Not ... my loooooooong time sweetie.

Hope your day is full of the hubster ~ I wish you both a happy Valentine's Day.

At 1:35 PM, Blogger angie said...

Sounds like a wonderful picnic!

The hubster got back from Tucson last night, so I'm really happy to be able to spend some time with him today. Can't help it, I am a romantic mush-monster fool for the man!

At 3:45 PM, Blogger anne frasier said...

happy valentine's day, angie!

At 5:26 PM, Blogger Bill Cameron said...

We're having Chinese food. And I broke down and got chocolate AND jools. I couldn't help myself.

At 8:40 PM, Blogger angie said...

Aww, Bill's a cool dude...

Seriously, that's awesome - hope you had a wonderful time!

At 10:23 PM, Blogger M. G. Tarquini said...

Carnations? That tradition never hit the part of the country I lived in.

And Happy Valentine's Day to you, too. What's left of it.

I totally don't get this day. It pretty much goes by without notice. Flowers are nice. I got them with lots of nice hugs and kisses from my valentines. No chocolate though. I'm dieting.

At 5:57 AM, Blogger Trace said...

Angie, shoulda seen my blog entry from last year on Valentine's day. I put a link to it on my blog yesterday hehehehehe! Talk about bitter!

At 11:26 AM, Blogger Hulles said...

You convinced me. Thanks for a lovely post. And happy belated Valentine's Day to you. I hope it was as warm and cuddly as your blog entry.


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