This is your Valentine's Day Post - Deal


This is your Valentine's Day Post - Deal
Posted on February 14th, 2007 @ 04:08pm in Rants
Mmkay, so I've been falling behind in keeping up with everyone's blog posts lately. To top it off, most of my daily reads aren't updating often either which has resulted in me expanding my horizons so to speak. I have read eleven different blog posts today. From a Malaysian blogger to your average American blogger and everywhere I look (with the exception of very few) it's all the same thing. Ooh it's Valentine's Day...I LOVE you ALL!!

Quick, someone gag me with a spoon.

To be honest I just cannot see what the fuss over this holiday is. Hell, it's not even supposed to be a celebration of "love" but rather it was originally the designated date of celebration for the Christian/Catholic saint St. Valentine, as declared by the Pope in 496.¹

My main gripe with this overly romanticized, Hallmark backed holiday is this: if you love someone do you really need a day to tell them? I mean seriously people, is it all that romantic to have your significant other give you a rose on Valentine's Day just like every other S.O. around the world who feels obligated to and doesn't want to be sleeping on the couch for a week? Wouldn't you rather have them remember a significant day during your relationship that meant something special to them? Take this scenario for example:
You arrive at work one day, completely tired and not looking forward to another long day slaving away to make ends meet. Twenty minutes before your scheduled lunch break your boss shows up and tells you to go ahead and go to lunch and casually suggests you take your time. As you exit your place of work you are met with the sight of your honey holding a picnic basket and ready to whisk you away for a home cooked lunch for two. Over lunch they tell you that today marks the exact date that they realized how special you were to them, and all you had to do was scold them for slacking off again at work. Your righteous fury at their casual disregard for their own welfare touched them in a way they cannot express and as they looked into your angry eyes they realized you were angry because you cared for them and knew they were better than that.
To be honest a moment like that would mean so much more than the following:
It's twenty minutes to your scheduled lunch break and you're ready to head home instead of just taking a break when a deliveryman from the local florist walks in. He looks about as exhausted as you are and is trying to juggle two nearly identical arrangements in his arms while reading the contents of his clipboard. He glances up at you for the first time and brusquely inquires to your identity. After confirming that you are indeed the customer he is seeking he starts to hand you one of the arrangements, it's comprised of a dozen red roses and baby's breath held in an elegant crystal vase, when he suddenly jerks it back with a muttered "sorry, wrong one" and hands you the second arrangement. This one is comprised of a dozen red roses as well (which look decidedly the worse for wear) and garnished with a couple of sprigs of baby's breath and arranged in a cheap plastic vase. The delivery man quickly wishes you a happy Valentine's day then heads off to his next delivery. You find out later that the second delivery was for your annoying coworker who can never stop bragging and for the rest of the day they decide to regale you with tales of their newest flame.
In all reality, the gift given to loved ones on Valentine's day is an obligatory sort of tradition. You do it because it's expected of you. Yes you might love the person, but rarely does that love show through in the gift. Why, because it's the thought that counts and when a gift is expected is there any care actually put into it? I think not.

Of course maybe I'm just jaded. Hey, my birthday is February 12th, do you know how many guys have thought it was absolutely "romantic" to ask me to be their valentine on my birthday? How many roses and chocolates I get because I'm a Valentine's baby? It's sad really. Of course maybe this all stems back from when I was in elementary. Our school, like any other school, allowed you to send flowers, balloons, cards, and candy to whoever you wanted on campus. It was a mark of popularity to return to your seat after lunch to find your desk covered in Valentine's gifts. Hell it was that way in middle school and high school as well come to think of it. There was one year that I will never forget though. It was while I was in elementary still, fourth or fifth grade I think. We had just returned from lunch and there were some valentine's on my desk. After I read the valentines given to me, all of which were from my friends, one boy rose from across the room and stumbled forward to give me a valentine. The poor boy was blushing like mad and who could really have blamed him. I mean here I was, a total tomboy and pretty much the outcast of my school. I was the girl he had known since kindergarten and the girl he always recruited for pranks and one of only two girls the guys fought over when picking players for kickball. And then there was the boy, he was our class's most popular student, superb jock, and he had most of the girls giggling over him. And here he was giving me a Valentine in front of everyone. And it was not a valentine you would have given a friend either. I was touched and I think my cold little heart melted then swelled, and to be honest so did my ego.

The moment was ruined however when the teacher walked over and congratulated the boy on giving me a valentine and she actually had the gall to give him a Gold Slip. ² Worse yet, he had the nerve to take it and act proud of his "achievement". Needless to say I returned his valentine to him and refused to consider his interest in me, and my own mutual interest, any further. If he was smart he would have turned down the "reward". To add insult to injury he won the drawing that week too.

Moral of the story, Valentine's day is an overrated holiday. The real creation behind the day was lost to history and snotty nobles, and the meaning behind the newer holiday is lost in the over marketing conducted by retailers and expectations of society. If you want to really show your love for someone, then do something original and put your time, effort, and most importantly your love into it.

¹ Click here for the full history behind Valentine's Day.
² Gold Slips are the opposite of Pink Slips and were used by our school. Gold Slips were awarded to students who did well academically or did some notable act of goodness. There was a weekly drawing held for students who received a gold slip. The winners received various prizes from new tapes, books, stationary to even free meals at certain restaurants.

Obligatory Post-Birthday Post

I feel compelled to write about my birthday [which was yesterday] today. I'm not sure why really, but I feel like it. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that after reading about mall shootings and nasty business meetings in the news I'd just rather not talk about anything too serious. So since this is my site and I'm a bit of a narcissist we're talking about me. So as I sit here eating what some of my friends have dubbed a "nasty" snack, which happens to be a jalapeño bagel covered in strawberry cream cheese, I'll relate the events of yesterday to you. Hm, speaking of which, what kind of bagels do you all like? Anybody like jalapeño? I digress, a thousand apologies.

I turned 23 yesterday and somehow I don't feel the wiser for it. I woke wondering if I might have gained some great insight on the world around me, but alas, I'm still clueless. I was pampered royally by friends and family which felt great though . I know everyone normally lists their presents, but since most of mine were of the paper and plastic variety I'd feel better not listing those. Let's just say it was more than enough to pay my bills for the month and leave it at that. While I may not have gained any new knowledge I feel as though I have a better appreciation of my life, because as bland and dismal as it may seem things could be worse. I could lose everything in the blink of an eye or I could watch someone I care about taken away from me in a flash. That I haven't had these horrible things happen to me makes me more grateful than words can express.

The night of my birthday wasn't nearly as fun as the day though. After I got out of my CJ 414 class, which runs from 6-8:30pm, I headed home thinking it might be nice just to kick back and relax since my assignments are all done. Instead I spent my night sitting on the side of the road waiting for the police and a tow truck to arrive. I travel the frontage road because it's less traveled and I can fly down it with little to no worries about being pulled over. As I crested one hill I spied some blinking lights and I thought it was someone's hazard lights. What it really was were the car's turn signal lights.

A pregnant woman and her son were traveling on the Northbound lane of I-25 to visit the boy's grandfather in Albuquerque. I-25 runs parallel to the frontage road I was traveling on. Apparently she fell asleep behind the wheel of her car and crossed over into the median between the North and Southbound lanes. Realizing her mistake she tried to correct herself but actually over corrected and crossed back over the Northbound lanes hit the barbwire fence, flipped, and rolled down onto the frontage road. That night I was going slow, 60mph instead of my normal 80mph, so when I arrived her car had already come to a stop. I couldn't help but think that if I had been going my normal speed she might have plowed into me.

When I arrived the car was on it's side and another vehicle was pulled over on the interstate, a man and a woman were up by the interstate talking on a cellphone so I thought perhaps everything might be okay. I got out of my car anyway though and asked if they needed some help. Turns out the two standing up there were the witnesses and the occupants of the car were still trapped inside. I could now hear the crying of a little kid. The two witnesses stayed by their vehicle and refused to come and help so I ran over to the car and I swear my heart stopped. The little boy was pressed against the roof of the car and with his face turned partially away from me. What scared me the most was that in the little bit of light that there was and from what I could see of him he looked like my friend's son. The woman inside was blonde and and I could tell she was pregnant and my mind jumped to the conclusion that it was Melanie and her son Dylan in the car. It wasn't, thank goodness, but you can imagine my shock and fear in that moment.

Somehow I managed to extract the little boy from the tangle and lift him through the broken window without hurting him. I swear I don't know where I found the strength to lift the boy, but somehow I did and was able to help the woman climb out while holding onto the boy who didn't want to be put down. The whole time the man and the wife just stood by and watched. Never mind that if the people are trying to get out you should help them lest they hurt themselves worse in the process. There were several other accidents that night and it took awhile for the police to arrive so in the mean time I had the woman and her son sit in my car with the heater on and wrapped in a blanket I keep in my car. I ended up sitting by the road since I just helped and didn't actually witness the accident. The whole time though I couldn't help but be grateful that it wasn't me and that they were okay. Somehow I just kept picturing my friend and her son sitting where the woman and her son were. It was the strangest night of my life.