Ok guys, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and, if you’re like me, you’ve probably done the whole Oppositional-Defiant (OD) thing and tried not to celebrate it. This year I’m thinking differently and I think you should, too. Here’s why.
Well, first, here’s why not.
Maybe you’ve made the excuse that it’s just a made up holiday. It’s true. It is made up. Just like every other holiday. None of them have been passed down in our genetic code. At some point society decided that a special day to recognize the one, or ones if you’re polyamorous, in your life is a good thing.
But, shouldn’t you be thinking of that special person everyday? Well, that sure would be nice, but we should be thankful for all the good things we have in life everyday and yet there’s still Thanksgiving. Do you skip that? How about our veterans? Shouldn’t we acknowledge their sacrifice regularly rather than just once a year? Do you take a pass on Veteran’s Day? We celebrate overeating and the buying of gifts every Christmas! Shouldn’t we do that every year?
Oh, wait. Bad example.
Look, despite our best intentions, life happens and we get distracted from time to time. Taking a particular day to refocus isn’t a bad thing.
“It’s a Hallmark holiday, made up just to sell cards, chocolate, and flowers!”
Actually, it was Geoffrey Chaucer back in 1382 – that’s 13-frikkin-82! – that first mentioned Valentine’s Day as a day of romance. Traditions built up over the centuries such that the early 1800’s made the sending of romantic cards very popular. All of this well before Hallmark even existed.
“But everyone is out celebrating it and the restaurant service is horrible!”
You got me here, my friend, but going out to eat isn’t your only option. Heck, it probably isn’t even a great option. Cooking up a nice dinner at home is a romantic choice. So what if you don’t consider yourself a good cook? Stretch your boundaries. Call up your mom for cooking advice. Phone a friend. Make an effort.
If you don’t want to celebrate Valentine’s Day because you’re feeling pressured into doing it, reframe it. Be a man and take control of it. Celebrate it in a way that’s special to your partner and tell society to piss off. If she likes chocolates, buy chocolates. Not because Lindt told you to, but because that’s what your partner likes. If she prefers a candlelit backrub, whip out your Yankee Candle and light it up.
Make Valentine’s Day about strengthening the connection you have with your loved one. Maybe that’s turning off the cell phones, or the laptops, or the TV. Maybe it’s getting out of the house, or maybe it’s staying in. Heck, for some guys, when they do something especially nice, there may be some suspicion that they’re making up for some mistake. Valentine’s Day is your chance to do something nice without feeling guilty about something or worrying that she thinks you’re feeling guilty about something. It’s a free pass to be romantic.
Besides, our day – March 14th – is right around the corner and, as I read somewhere once, “As ye sow, so shall ye reap.” You’ll have an entire month to pick your favorite cut of beef and to do some man-scaping. For now, just think about how you can make this Valentine’s Day about your relationship with your partner.
So, drop the defiance, pickup your date, and have fun.
Steve is the founder of Straight Talk Entertainment and currently produces and writes for the audio drama Aural Traditions, recently voted Charleston City Paper’s Best Local Podcast. He’s also an Information Security professional and avid shark tooth hunter.