Valentine’s Day

I just want to make a quick note before I give you this one…. While you know that most of these were written some time ago I want to also let you know that I used to e-mail these out to my friend and family list… I would always forget one or two of them and would have to send another out afterwards. It got to be more than just a little pain in the, but that is why I am posting them here. I am quite sure that not all my friends and family looked forward to my holiday essays; it’s also probably why most of them don’t speak to me anymore or perhaps it was the rants eh, oh well it’s been done now.

I heard that sound you just made when you saw this in your mail, I know it’s not everyone’s favorite day for instance the teacher I told you about earlier this month, just kidding.

St. Valentine’s Day began… well that matter is up for some discussion some say with the Romans. In Ancient Rome, February 14 was a holiday to honor Juno, the Queen of Roman Goddesses and Gods. Juno is the Roman Goddess of women and marriage. The next day February 15 was the first day of the Festival known as the Feast of Lupercia. On the fourteenth the boys and girls in the villages would write down the names of every single girl and place them in a jar. All of the single young men would then have to draw a name from the jar and the girl whose name he picked would then be his partner for the remainder of the Feast of Lupercia. These pairings would sometimes last a year and perhaps even lead to marriage.

Under the laws of Emperor Claudius this ritual among others were banned as he believed that the men would be more willing to go off to war if they were not leaving lovers or families behind. All marriages and engagements were canceled as a result perhaps not a bad idea today, just kidding mom. Saint Valentine was a Roman priest long before he was a Saint and was said to have married couples in secret. Of course this didn’t make Claudius very happy and for this Valentine executed on what many believe to have been the 14th day of February. It is also believed that while St Valentine was in jail, he fell in love with the jailers’ daughter who was blind. By a miracle or some say by the prayers of Valentine she gained her sight and as a last farewell in a note he was said to have written “From Your Valentine”. Now that I suppose is where one could say the very first Valentine’s card came from. Another version of that same story says that he was a priest as well, but who was also a physician and would cure the sick. That he had tried to cure the jailers blind daughter, but, was arrested before she was cured. Then on the day of his execution he wrote the note as a final farewell saying “From your Valentine” which some say caused her to gain her sight.

It is also said that while he was in jail awaiting his execution he was sent notes and flowers from the children whom he had helped. This also may have been one of the reasons why he sent a farewell note to the jailers’ daughter and why we send valentines or maybe it’s just another one of them corporate conspiracies that some like so much.

Another interesting… just kidding I wouldn’t do that to you maybe I would, but not this time. Whichever way it all began, either with the beginning of the feast of Luprecia and the sympathies of the Roman Priest the jailing of the Priest, the healings of a Priest Physician or whatever he was or wasn’t this love tradition has stuck with us and continued. About the one thing that is for sure, he was destined to become St Valentine and the patron saint of lovers all over the world.

I am however, fairly sure that when this whole thing began they had no idea that there would be school children all over the world sitting down with mom and putting names on those little tiny cards that you give out to everyone in your class, only to find out that you forgot someone or that everyone forgot you. I wonder why it is that someone hasn’t complained about this day; maybe I should watch what I say, there just maybe someone out there that will after this. It’s not good for the child’s self-esteem or something like that; perhaps it’s just a matter of time.

I have a hard time thinking about this day of love for more reasons than I can list here, not because there isn’t enough paper it’s just that I am not sure that there is enough room left on my laptop memory.

This is the time of year that we pour our heart out to those that we love, those that love us, those that we love and we hope they love us or at least like us enough to get one of them little cards from them. With the invention of hallmark and jewelry some poor schlep somewhere is putting down good money on something that may or may not be accepted in the true meaning of what it was meant for. This day of the heart has got to be the least liked and the most liked day of the year. Hated by singles yet loved by couples, well at least loved by the female half of the couple. I bet you’re wondering where all my questions are about this one aren’t you… no, good because you know they’re coming.

Why is it that men only get cards from their other halves?
Why is it that a woman can’t be happy with the same thing?
Women have been ‘fighting’ for years to get equal this and equal that but let this day roll around and it’s equal what?
If men are expected to shell out money for flowers, jewelry and dinner all on the same day, why is it that women are not ‘expected’ to the same thing sometimes.
Why is it that men are “expected” to?
I think that this was another one of those days where as a male it’s pounded into your head that if you don’t give her something flashy, something bad is going to happen to you. Well, that is what happened to your father when he forgot about it isn‘t it.
When a man forgets Valentine’s Day he can be assured of a very cold shoulder.
If a woman forgets Valentine’s Day, it is a safe bet that it will hardly be noticed.
Let a man come home to his sweetheart on Valentine’s Day and toss her some flowers and maybe a card or some candy she will usually be wondering where the rest of it is.
Let a woman do the same he will no doubt wonder what she has done wrong.

When you eat the heart shaped candies that say ‘be mine’ or ‘I love you’ does that mean that you want them as well or that you love them too or is it why is this person sending me this? If you don’t eat them does that mean you don’t or do? If you just threw them out because the girl/boy that gave them to you had cooties or something we thought we’d catch did that curse your future love life. That sure would explain a lot to me at least. Do you even remember when that cutie in your class gave you some of them and you were sure that they really, really meant it.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m very confused about all that candy etiquette crap. And whatever you do don’t get me started on those little cards that we all passed out in elementary school it’s all just way to confusing.

Puppy love is something that everyone goes through, to some extent at least. Circle yes or no notes passed around in class and when you weren’t paying attention did you answer one that wasn’t meant for you. I mean really, if you weren’t meant to get it why didn’t they at least put the name of the person it was meant for on the outside. No, they just get upset when you answer it, what was up with that.

Now that you sit here reading this do you think about that one kid in your class that everyone forgot but they always remembered you? Was your little card the only one they handed out, or did they get everyone else, was yours different than the others, maybe it was folded so that you couldn’t see who it was from right away. Did they sit and move around in their chair while they watched you out of the corner of their eye waiting for you to pull that one out of the pile. Do you remember how you reacted when you found out whom that ‘special’ one was from? Do you remember if you threw it out in front of them or did you wait until you got home first? I know so many questions; hey at least I didn’t stay awake half the night thinking of them this time. I wonder if any of us remember who it was that always had the most at the end of it all. Was their pile bigger than yours, maybe your pile was the biggest in class, do you ever think about the ones that only got one or two or perhaps none at all.

I think that somewhere in time on this day there must have been the first time anyone ever heard those immortal words ‘I think we should just be friends’ and ‘I just don’t like you that way’ and ‘I’m just not ready for that’ or how about the most famous one ‘I love you like a brother/sister.’ In any language across the world and even perhaps across the universe nothing cuts as deep as some of the words that are uttered on this day, I even think that they cut even deeper than they do any other time.

On this day that is set aside to celebrate love in all of its splendor. This day there are hearts that will flutter, beat, pound, skip, crack, break and even rip apart all over the world. We as a human race are supposed to forget our minds and let our heart do the thinking for a change. I can’t think of any other day where we are supposed to hand our hearts to someone in the hopes that those that we offer it to will accept it, hold it gently, and let us hold theirs back that is if we are lucky enough. We are told that this what life is for, this feeling that we can’t breathe when we are around them, then again maybe we’re just afraid that our breath isn’t so sweet or theirs, this feeling that if they were not near, you would be lost, and don’t let them tell you it’s just because you won’t stop and ask directions, this feeling of never wanting to let go. For those of us that have been there, done that and burned the t-shirt it is a day of skepticism and the desire for a stone heart, something that I have owned in the past, more than once.

So to you my friends and family, I say that whatever the origin of this day and however you feel about it, know that there is no one thing that you must do for that one you love. There a number of things that you can do or try and odds are favor that you’ll be wrong anyway. With that said there’s but one way to save yourself. I’m not so sure I want to tell you what that is… well all right if you insist. Grab the one that says they love you and you believe them, that’s very important here, take your Viagra, just kidding, man you guys are so serious, where was I oh yeah that’s right. Grab your honey look deep into their eyes, tell a joke and then say hey, what are you looking at. You’ve got to sound like you meant it too otherwise they’ll think you’re crazy. I know what you’re thinking and quite frankly I don’t think I like it so well, I may resemble that remark but that’s beside the point. Oh all right if you insist I will finish this with the following; over dinner, raise your glass to your love and tell them that they are worth every aggravating minute.


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Filed under Holidays, St Valentines Day

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