Somehow, we got from a charming third century legend to a commerical industry that amounts to a somewhat sham.
The hearts are too big, the chocolate too heart-shaped and the message too large.
Don\’t get me wrong, I think that spreading happiness and goodwill once a year is a delightful idea. Every day would be even better.
But what I notice about martyr St. Valentine is that he brought flowers from his garden to the women. Then they threw him flowers when he was imprisoned.
And what we celebrate since is that he was the last male on Earth since 269 A.D. to initiate the idea of giving flowers all by himself. That means \”Oh!\” (a torch appears overhead), \”I think I\’ll bring Dungeon-ette some flowers.\”
I\’m convinced, anyway, by my own history.
I think it all started when I never got a Valentine card from the cute boy in the fifth grde. I was crushed. I looked all around me, and the other giggling, tee-heeing girls got cut-outs that said \”BEE my Valentine,\” with a smiling bumblebee. I just got the standard obligatory heart-shaped candy from the teacher.
Did the giggling girls really get the bumblebee card from the cute boys? I\’m suspicious that it was the wholesome mothers who were behind it all along when they shopped at the dime store.
Later, I watched from the sidelines my other cheerleading friends \”go steady\” with the same roster of cute guys. They exchanged class rings over which she layered thread and fingernail polish. I didn\’t qualify for those colorful adornments because I always chewed my nails. I still wonder, however, if again he initiated the Valentine, or if she staged it. He was, after all, busy hunching his shoulders and trying to appear whatever the word before \”groovy\” was.
The romantic thing has escaped me since. I\’ve heard of love at first sight, or someone across a crowded room, but my male relationships rather fell in the back door with a grin and a thoughtful can of WD40.
I married one of them. It wasn\’t from a kneeling proposal; the car stalled in an alley while searching for a parking place and he said a rather pragnmatic, \”ah, er, (hunched shoulders) do you think we should get married, then?\” That was after some blue language about other cars on his private street.
There followed no diamonds or gems, just gold bands. I lost mine in the compost heap and by the time it was replaced, the marriage of over. Meantime, the only flowers in the house were those that I plucked from my own garden.
I had another male friend who actually brought me flowers. They were day-old and a bit wilted from his green house job, but the thought counted.
It isn\’t that many males are completely oblivious about romance. They simply need some prodding. They have no download of an app where orchestras and hearthrobs distract them from their regular testosterone pursuits.
For that reason alone, the hearts and flowers are huge in the store. HINT, HINT! It\’s Valentine\’s Day, you idiot!