On Valentine’s Day

13 02 2007

Valentine’s Day, a day that seems to have been conjured up to greeting card companies and chocolate vendors to sell more cards and candy. And actually, if you look up Valentine’s Day in wikipedia it appears that in early America, the tradition of  the valentine may have been imported by the Brittish, only to have Esther Howland, whose father operated a book and stationary store, popularize this with her own unique creations. The problem that I see that has evolved is that back in those days, things were hand made (mostly) and there was time to think about what to give the one they love on a day (supposedly) designated for lovers. In 2007, things happen so fast, no one has time to think about these things, and ends up project managing their valentine gift and having flowers delivered, a card pre-printed, and a shrink-wrapped box of candies delivered as well.

Indeed, we are bombarded by advertisements that say that we are lesser men if we do not give our wives or girl-friends a) a romantic card b) a box of candy c) a little teddy bear d) a dozen red roses e) a romantic night out.

Now, I don’t want to seem to cynical, but I can’t help but complain about the obvious exploitation of something that was classically a grand tradition that had meaning to those to chose to partake in it, and turn it into something that can rake in a few bucks. Sound familiar? That the way most holidays are in this era we live.  I choose to not celebrate my holidays this way.

If I do decide to celebrate one of these holidays with my family, I try my best to add a personal touch. So, for Valentine’s day this year, we are doing nothing.

Now, let me expain. We are both sick. Our kids have full attention, and we have a lot on our plates. I could blow $100 on some roses that will die in a few days, but that money can be better spent on baby stuff that is more pertinent.  Also, being as this is a day to express love, nothing says I love you more than taking care of her when she is sick, and helping out with all the duties that she does every day and make everyday easier for her. My way to show my love is to make her time with her family as fun as possible. Sometimes I don’t always achieve that, but that is the goal.

This Valentine’s Day, do something special..but don’t buy it from the store.

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