Indigo Editor’s Blog – 737
Valentine’s Day. ‘Singles Awareness Day’. Day of obligatory relationship ostentation or of crushing loneliness. Two perennial clichés of the relationship world, two insufferable groups – the lovers and the singletons. Walk past any restaurant today and you’ll see tables and tables of boyfs and girlfs attempting to pull off ‘romantic’. Or go to Klute and find the desperate single people, asserting in an inverse, self-obsessed sort of way that the day is really all about them. But they don’t even care about being single, man, they like it better that way.
Who exactly was this St Valentine? A romantic, randy Cupid from the olden days beatified for matchmaking? Who knows? Wikipedia is certainly a bit iffy on the subject. In any case, the man clearly wasn’t advocating the benefits of chocolate and jewellery to a relationship back in 200AD. So the obvious question is what makes people actually celebrate the day. For couples, any celebration of the day is compulsory, and therefore meaningless. For single people, today simply raises their awareness of being single. Brilliant. “You can’t be in Valentine’s Day, sorry. It’s not for you.”
Then there’s a third group of people, the people who find the day a bit of a joke. For them, it’s a complete non-event. They look at the harried single people, they look at the schmaltzy couples, and they smile world-weary smiles. For them, today’s like Father’s Day; definitely not a thing for them either. “Dad, you know I love you because I didn’t get you a card. I know how much you hate commercialisation, see. That’s my gift. Hey, let’s subvert this stupid day even further. Why don’t you make the tea?!” It’s pretty uncomfortable, being like this of course: keeping up the appearance of nonchalance is tough. But the rewards are composite; few social obligations, and being the coolest cat since Top Cat. And he was a very cool cat.
The sad part about those in this group is that they never actually do anything if they can avoid it. They might have the right idea about not submitting to the social diktats of evil corporations, but equally, it would be depressing if there were no celebrations ever. And at its heart (I know), Valentine ’s Day is actually quite nice. The celebration of love shouldn’t be quite so easily balked at. So what we (slightly counter-intuitively) suggest is a mass boycott of the Valentine’s Day, as it is on February 14th. Why not just surprise your loved one on a different, random day, your own ‘Valentine’s Day’ if you will. Pros: Romantic spontaneity. Individuality. No Singles Awareness Day. Cons: The cash-in film Valentine’s Day would not exist. Though this seems a small price to pay.