Thursday, February 13, 2014


It's Valentine's Day tomorrow.
It's also my birthday.
I'll never know what it's like to have a birthday not on a holiday, and I'm okay with that.
I'll never know what the hubbub is about a normal Valentine's Day because my significant others have always done something for me, because it's my birthday.

That being said, I find myself defensive of the day and what it stands for.
It makes me irrationally angry when people call it a stupid day, or offer one of their canned "I'm better than this day" lines. Oh, and side note, it makes you look like either a smug asshole* (if coupled, and "anti-V-Day".. or a bitter asshole (if single and "anti-V-Day"... so, either way you look an asshole, even if you're not trying to be smug and not actually bitter).

I read the following in a blog post recently:

"I started thinking about Valentine's Day and the tendency our society has to make this ONE day so laser-focused on romance.  Shouldn't romance, sex, lingerie, and love be woven into every day?"
The answer is: absolutely. But again, I think the understanding of the day is misplaced**.

The three holidays I parallel Valentines Day most to are St. Patrick's Day, Christmas and Thanksgiving. What do they have in common, you may be wondering. The two most common refrains I hear from people who are anti-Valentines Day are as follows:

 "I celebrate love year round... so we don't really celebrate Valentine's Day."

That's great.
Really, truly, it is. But do you? Do you HONESTLY?
Well, are you thankful year round? Do you express thanks and gratitude and appreciation for the people in your life and the things you have more than once a year? You do? Oh, so why do we need Thanksgiving. Do you boycott Thanksgiving?

Absolutely not.

Because as much as people say they are thankful year round, there's something special about taking a day to celebrate that thanks with a great meal with family and friends.

The same can be said for Valentine's Day. You're doing life in general WRONG if you're not expressing love on a daily basis. It doesn't even have to be on a romantic level, it can be with your friends or your family. Regardless, what's wrong with taking one day to be a little over the top. A little extra thankful- in the case of Thanksgiving, and a little extra lovey- in the case of V-Day.

        "It's just a scam by the greeting card, candy, and floral companies."

Right, the "Hallmark Holiday." You're so original.
Because there are no other consumer-based-holidays that mayyyyy have stepped away from the true origins of celebration thousands of years ago.
<<cough, cough..CHRISTMAS..cough, cough>>

Why aren't we calling St. Patrick's Day the Beer Industry Holiday. Because really, that's mostly what it's become. It's a holiday that has centered around getting belligerently drunk in the name of denigrating an entire country- because hey- you ain't Irish if you ain't drunk! (I'm not even Irish and I kind of find that insulting on their behalf). So where did that holiday originate? It's an international religious holiday and Catholic feast day. Did you know that? I'm sure you did. I couldn't tell you the history of St. Patrick other than he did a lot of great things.

Did you know that there was also a St. Valentine? That it's also a religious holiday and feast day?
Did you know he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry (and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire.) So really in 2014 with marriage equality we should all be getting down with St. Valentine.

So why do people have such vitriolic views of Valentine's Day? It could be because over the years, increasingly high expectations have been placed on people's partners, sometimes leading to disappointment. It could be because there's a stigma that it's sad, bad, whatever- to be single. (One I don't buy into, for what it's worth).

You don't need to take a stance on Valentine's Day. Really. You don't need to let everyone know how easy-breezy-cool you are because you don't celebrate. You don't need to let everyone know how you hate it because you're single. Just... stop.

*After seeing a post on FB I do want to add: I totally understand why Valentine's Day may be hard for people who have lost significant others, or who have other unrelated reasons for having a tough time on V-Day. I'm not a total heartless monster. But this post isn't directed at them.

**(The rest of that post is fantastic, and actually- it focuses on not waiting for a "special occasion" to live your life- this one line just happened to inspire me to post about other commonly heard valentine's day refrains.)


  1. I love this post! :) Jake and I never go "big" for V day, but I love it just the same! And you get a birthday filled with pink hearts! LOVE IT! HAHA

  2. Preach! I have been kicking around a similar post in my head. When I finally get to writing it, I'm linking to this. You explain my feelings so well! :)

  3. Valentine's Day has changed a little bit for Adam and I now that we have kids and I don't say that in a way that once you have kids, it's impossible to celebrate Valentine's Day. But, we've found that getting a babysitter on any sort of holiday is hard. We don't 'go big' either, by any means, but we do try to find special ways to show our love (a little more than we normally do) on Valentine's Day. :)

    I hope you and Matt have an amazing Valentine's Day...and take the time to celebrate your Birthday, too!! :)

  4. THANK YOU. 1) We share the same birthday so I know exactly where you are coming from! 2) You hit the nail on the head. I'd had enough of the whole "you should celebrate love everyday" crap I kept reading on everyone's blogs and finally said in a comment "if you celebrate love everyday, why wouldn't Valentine's Day be any different?" I agree that you should celebrate love everyday and for that reason exactly, I like to celebrate Valentine's Day! That doesn't mean we don't celebrate being with one another all the time, we just use it as another reason to do so. Plus, I just really like celebrating stuff. :) We don't do anything huge or anything but it's still nice to do a little something.

  5. :) Good post, Kell. Last year you were in FL for your birthday surprise to M. What's up your sleeve this year?

  6. Agreed! I am as single as can be, but I love Valentine's Day :)

  7. I like how you referenced it back to Thanksgiving and Christmas. So true. I never really thought to compare them all but they do have a lot in common. Hope you have a great birthday and valentines day :)

  8. I love celebrating Valentine's Day!! I don't care if it's Hallmark or cheesy or for lovers - I love it all! Love having a day to spoil EVERYONE around me and really just love on everyone. Who doesn't need a little more love in their lives?

  9. THIS is amazing! Seriously, I'm sending this to friends! You are so spot on! There is nothing wrong with celebrating love a little more than usual one day a year. And I personally think the two plus months of Christmas decor, music and parties versus the ONE day celebrating a major religious event is way more aggravating than a single day filled with chocolates!

  10. My birthday is a holiday too…Cinco de Mayo! So, yeah everyone always wants to drink margaritas and party. Which is fine, but it is weird to "share" your birthday!

  11. I love went you rant and I totally agree.