The Obligatory Valentine's Day Post

Perhaps it’s because of the company I keep, but it seems fashionable these days to bash Valentine’s Day. But then again, it’s fashionable these days to bash most holidays.

I consider myself to be a fairly romantic guy. Romance fascinates me as both an intellectual concept, and a more concrete feeling between two people. It’s a theme that you see everywhere in our culture. I think it’s safe to say romance has inspired a lot of great works. I’m not just talking Shakespearian sonnets here, I even had one colleague tell me he got into the business of designing buildings so he could impress women (obviously he’s a somewhat misguided soul, but that’s a post for another time). When it comes to entertainment, even the shows that aren’t romantic themed have it written in. Rare is the movie, tv show, or book that doesn’t have an element of romance or at least sexual tension written in.

So a holiday devoted to romance seems like a good idea in theory. And I think the key to that sentence is the last two words. It’s a great idea to have a day devoted to romantic deeds. But it starts to fall apart in the execution. A whole holiday devoted to the idea leads to expectations, and expectations are the enemy of romance. (I just read that and let me just say, damn that sounds cheesy. But it stays.) What makes romance special is that you don’t have to do it. You do it just to make your special someone happy. When your special someone expects it, then you’re just doing your duty. That’s not romantic.

Personally, I blame Hallmark. Commercialization is the root of all evil.

So in summary.......... Valtine's Day = good idea in theory, bad in execution. Blame = Hallmark.


Blogger Aunt B said...

expectations are the enemy of romance

I think that's really nice and not cheesy. And true.

8:52 AM, February 14, 2006  
Blogger W said...

I dunno. I'm going with cheesy. But nice and cheesy can coexist.

2:26 PM, February 14, 2006  

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