I hate Valentine’s Day. It’s not the commercialism of it all, its the narrow definition of ‘love’ you’re expected to comply with. I’m not the biggest fan of slutty lingerie in fetching shades of pink and red, or “sweet”, “touching” “romantic” “comedies”. I have no need for heart shaped balloons, or fluffy white teddy bears holding fluffy red hearts proclaiming their love for me, and therefore whenever Valentine’s Day rolls around I despair at the cliched, stereotypical way you are meant to celebrate your love for someone. (Though I do like red roses)
I’ve felt the full Valentine’s Day attack this year, working in retail. You know how retailers like to push lingerie, romcoms and fluffy teddy bears down your throat. Despite the shop I work for being a home/hardware firm, they still got in on the act, making me talk to customers about their plans for The Big Day and if you’ve been a bad boyfriend and haven’t bought your girlfriend anything yet, what about a toolbox and flask combo? Only £10.99! Nothing says I Love You like DIY now, does it…? (Then again we also did a Secret Valentine’s thing among the staff, which made me smile as I got some lovely Ikea candles and candle holders, so it wasn’t all bad)
I had originally planned a blog all about my hate of the day. All about how I dislike the way it makes single people feel bad about not being with anyone (when there’s nothing wrong with that at all), how I dislike the pressure on men to woo women, and the pressure on women to love the ways that men attempt to woo them (often ill-advised, ill-judged, and a regurgitation of every stereotypical profile of romance the media has ever peddled).
But then, I felt bad. I served a very young boy in work a few days ago, who was buying a pencil case (and a rather kickass pencil case, at that), with 64p carefully counted out, and I told him how I loved the pencil case and how I want one myself, and he said that I was too old to be going to school like him and the girl he likes, and that he was buying the pencil case for her because “I really like her and want her to smile”. Nothing bad can come from a day celebrating love and romance, not really. Maybe I should stop being so cynical and such a bitch, and just enjoy things like this! (Though saying that, I still refuse to dress up in disgusting underwear so that someone can tell me how Hallmark feels about love)
…I had a really nice Valentines weekend. My boyfriend painted a picture of me (!), and it’s probably the nicest thing anyone’s ever done for me. And it’s really good! Better than any card ever could be.
He also cooked for us, and we lazed around and watched Mad Men and…well, you know. I feel very lucky. I love that we celebrated in our own little way, but then it’s like this every time we’re together – sickeningly sweet, enough to make you want to wring the necks of fluffy teddy bears. I feel even luckier knowing that this type of thing is not just something that’s going to roll around once every year – so that, readers, is the real reason I don’t like Valentine’s Day, because when you love someone, you don’t need a special day to let them know this. Yep, that old chestnut!
(You can put the sick bucket away now)