Do We Really Need a Day to Celebrate Love?

I was in the bathroom of a swingers club just outside Toronto when I really started giving thought to Valentine’s Day. I was on a documentary shoot as an extra with some fellow students. A gorgeous blonde haired, blue-eyed friend of mine was fixing her make up in the mirror. When I asked her what her and her beau were doing for this magical, annual day of love, her answer was nonchalant.

“The thing is…. We don’t really care about it,” she said in a voice that was almost a whisper of confidentiality. It was like a secret that she did not care. In fact, she couldn’t give a flimsy paper heart or an overpriced box of chocolates about it.

On the other hand, I have a friend, and this friend is single. She hates February the 14th. No, that’s not right. I would have to say she loathes it from the top of her head to the core of her being.

Going out with her around this time is hazardous because anything pink or red might make her gag. She’ll roll her eyes at cards, and the very mention of the day itself makes her cringe. Forget about any kind of love song. She’s not alone. I know a people who have plans to sit around with their single friends and be bitter.

What the f$#! is the deal? The dating girl couldn’t care less, and the single people have to sit around and hate it?

Single? You spit on Cupid.

In a relationship? It’s just money you have to spend. Bingo.

This is what we call common ground, kids. This is a complete revelation on behalf of this day, which has been the subject of love, and possibly even more hate over the years.

My totally bitter friend said that even if she were in a relationship she would hate today because it’s commercialized. My dating blonde friend realizes it’s hype.

Lisa Simpson said it best: “…it was acquired in a hostile takeover by Hallmark and Disney, homogenized, and sold off piece by piece.” Every word in that sentence summarizes V-Day to a T.

Yes, the corporations pump cash into today and they play your heartstrings like an electric violin. The thing is: WE ALL KNOW IT. We are smart capable human beings who know we’re being sold stuff we don’t need. These are syrupy messages of what the media thinks real love and true romance is, dyed a blinding pink or purple and covered in sparkles. If we’re all aware this day is essentially mass manufactured why do we care? Why don’t we just treat it as another day?

We give corporations too much power if we know this day is just about cash flow and it still gets us angry, depressed, upset. There is one way to have a possible happy Valentine’s day.

Whether you’re seeing someone or you’re doing the single salsa, don’t buy cards or candy. Tell the people in your life you appreciate them with your words. Sit down to coffee with your parents, your best friend, your roommate and tell them why they make your life better without so much as a single bouquet of roses.

-Riley Wignall

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