Why YOU HAVE to Celebrate Valentine’s Day

Or to protest it – same thing. Unless, of course, you have genuinely forgotten about it. But, if February 14th comes about, and you have at least one thought “oh, today is Valentine’s day” it’s too late. Now, you have to celebrate it.

Maybe it’s something small, like you look at yourself in the mirror and say “Today is a today to appreciate love, and I appreciate how much I love myself!” Maybe it’s something big, like paint bombing a Hallmark store. The one thing you cannot do is ignore it.

BUT WAIT! Maybe it wasn’t your fault, maybe your sappy coworker gave you one of those little boxes full of those chalky hearts, and blasted Valentine cheer into your brain completely against your will. It doesn’t matter, the damage has been done! You have to respond to it. You are not separate from your surroundings, if the world celebrates Valentine’s day, you do too. It’s like wearing clothes – you cannot be neutral on the topic, because *everyone* is wearing clothes. Either you wear clothes and implicitly support the status quo, or you don’t wear them and make a statement (a commonly executed option in San Francisco.) You can’t say, “Yeah, I’m fairly neutral on the topic of clothes-wearing, so this morning I figured why bother?” The repercussions you will face when you go out in society will demand you take a side.

Similarly, you can “ignore” Valentine’s day, but you will keep getting reminders of it. It will keep needling itself into your brain. And, why do some people choose not to celebrate it anyway? People who choose not to wear clothes generally *don’t like* clothes. Similarly, people who don’t celebrate Valentine’s day tend to *not like* Valentine’s day. Which is fine, but OWN it. Give your coworkers cards with little black hearts on them, with the note “love is dead” on the inside.

Otherwise, you risk being like me on my birthday. I was like, “Yeah, I don’t really care about birthdays. Age is just a number, etc.” and planned to do nothing. But, when the day came around and I felt alone and unloved, and called up my good friend and was like “OH MY GOD CELEBRATE MY BIRTHDAY WITH ME” and she was all “It’s cool, come over and I’ll bake you a cake.”

Anyway, in the sake of full disclosure, this whole post came up because my girlfriend told me she usually “did nothing” for Valentine’s day. I was like, “You have watched every lesbian romantic comedy in the world at least 10 times, and probably 80% of all straight ones. How do you not celebrate Valentine’s day?”

She said she didn’t like feeling obligated to get gifts. I told her sorry, but she was obligated to get me flowers, but they could be cheap cuz I know she’s on a budget. (Hey, I hate to be shallow, but I’m not going to lie. If she’s shows up empty handed tonight, I’m probably going to be pissed.) Alternatively, she could have told me she wanted to protest it and we needed to think of a list of the 10 least romantic things we could do and I would have gone with it, unless it involved coprophagia. That would have been fine. But, a night of sitting around pretending like we both didn’t know it was Valentine’s day? NOT going to happen.

I suspect many people who “ignore” Valentine’s day are afraid they’re not loved. If they don’t get their hopes up for Valentine’s day, they won’t be disappointed – except, inevitably they will. If they really didn’t care, they wouldn’t need to make the conscious decision not to care.

4 thoughts on “Why YOU HAVE to Celebrate Valentine’s Day

  1. I am “not into” valentine’s day because it presents a nasty catch-22: do nothing and I think it’s because you don’t care, do something and I think it’s because you merely felt obligated to due to valentine’s day.

    I said we could “skip” valentine’s day this year and I am only slightly sad that Chris probably does not have a secret pink cake hiding in the closet. Never mind that I am trying to break myself of a pretty severe addition to junk food. I did have one valentine’s day where my girlfriend made a huge fuss when I didn’t want one, and I was legitimately upset with her, but that was a special case. I had gone to a friend’s funeral that morning, was working until 1am, and pretty much hated everything and did not want to see any stuffed bears.

    I AM super bummed that I won’t be able to spend the day with my best friend, who I met on Valentine’s day. For years we had standing “friendiversary” plans which we later let my husband 3rd wheel on. Any plans to get together were thwarted by a combination of shitty weather and bad planning.

    I think next year I will just come clean and tell Chris I would like a pink cake. The shop down the street does some that look very nice.

  2. I hate Valentine’s Day when it comes around. But then, somehow, I start getting into it. And voila! The next thing I know I start getting into it. And then I notice other people, alone and lonely, feeling miserable, looking to share with others, anyone really. Even other married couples, you can spot the one lonely also; even when in a couple. I guess this is when I start thinking maybe it’s time for some to get hit by Valentine’s arrow! Now isn’t that what one might hope for on Valentines!…

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