Friday, February 10, 2012
Is Valentine's Day Really For Lovers?
My hubby of many years – whom I adore – insists that Valentine’s Day is a construct of the greeting card companies, candy companies and florists. For this reason, he has boycotted the day for the last several years. If I want chocolate or flowers, it’s up to me to buy them for myself, which I admit I sometimes do.
So I did a little research on the history and tradition of St. Valentine’s Day. There are references in Catholic Church tradition to two different saints by that name, but my favorite legend goes back to the second century AD. (Yes, doubters, the tradition really has been around that long.) In this case, St. Valentine was a priest in the employ of Roman Emperor Claudius II, who believed that only unmarried men made good soldiers. But St. V snuck behind the emperor’s back and secretly married a few love-struck military men to their sweethearts. He was caught at it and executed, martyred in the name of romance. On the eve of his death he is purported to have written a love note to the young woman he fancied – the very first valentine card if you will.
How can anyone say this holiday is all about commercialism? Sure, like Christmas and Easter, it certainly suffers today from being over-commercialized, but the kernel of the holiday remains a pure and simple testament to true, romantic love. So let’s celebrate that simple idea! Let’s open some wine and toast that sentiment with the one we love. Let’s have a fine meal. Let’s kiss and make out and maybe even take it all the way to the bedroom. And if you want to sneak me a bite or two of chocolate along the way, or give me a posey, I won't hold it against you.