Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Oh Valentines....

What was once Saint Valentine's Day, has now evolved into Hallmark's most prized Monkey makers...sorry, I meant -- money makers. Do not misunderstand the following blog to be a bashing on the international 'love' day, I'm all for love. I am probably one of the few people who have read almost every single Nicholas Sparks novel, and cried to every sappy romance movie created. What I do however question, is the theory behind Valentine's Day and whether or not we still stay true to the nature of the day. So here I go, in hopes to educate, dictate, and advise:

Interesting ...
  • The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred.
  • In the 3rd Century, the Church recorded a Priest Valentine who defied a decree that forbid 'young men' getting married, (whims of a tyrannical empororer who was under the impression that single men made for better soldiers/fighters), however the Priest continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine's actions were discovered, he was ordered he be put to death.
  • According to legend, another Mr. Valentine actually sent the first "valentine" greeting himself -- while he was in prison. He fell in love with his jailer's daughter and before his death he wrote her a letter, which he signed "From your Valentine,".
  • Another idea is that Valentine's Day was used to replace the Festival of Lupercalia. Lupercalia of which, after much reading, sounded like a cruel animal sacrifice and excuse for a mass orgy. Gross. The replacement eradicated sacrificial blood smearing on human bodies for the sake of fertility, and stopped the name-in-a-hat-lucky-draw style of match making.
  • In the Greater Britain, Valentine's Day began to be popularly celebrated around the seventeenth century. By the middle of the eighteenth century, it was common for friends and lovers exchange small tokens of affection or handwritten notes. By the end of the century, printed cards began to replace written letters due to improvements in printing technology.
The Evolution of Valentines...
For the most part, we no longer need death or martyrs to be a major actor during Valentines Day. On the other hand, women have developed wants, needs, requirements -- so to speak. What once began as an expression of love through words on paper has become a public serenade of money, flowers, chocolate, commercial cards, food, and high priced lover's packages. Once again, I do not hold a low regard on this wonderful day. But there are some things that I miss about the origin of this day. The meaningful words, the expression of feelings, the display of true love.

So Gentlemen, if you want to buy her that diamond necklace... buy it. If you want to take her out to dinner... do it. What I've been trying to tell you during this essay-esque rant is, don't forget to tell her you love her, and all the reasons why you're happy to be with her. Valentine's is not the only day you're meant to love her, but is a day that you should definitely not forget to tell her that you're happy to be with her.

Happy Valentine's Day Everyone.

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