I hate Valentine’s Day.
I *really* hate Valentine’s Day.
Now most people would just say, “Well, that’s only because you don’t have anyone to celebrate it with.” To which I say:
I think most people that hate the day, hate it because they’re single. There are people that are married/taken that hate it as well… (I’ve been to enough “Anti-Valentine’s Day Parties to meet them) and it’s easy to discern why those people hate it. That’s because the hatred is on a conceptual level, rather than “lack of opportunity”.
“I don’t need a day on the calendar to tell my sweetie that I love/care for them.”
Agreed. Because face it… the concept IS really stupid. It’s a “holiday” (in the loosest of terms… banks are still open, and no one gets the day off) that’s only there to sell red and pink things. And if you’re only taking one day a year to tell and show your significant other the sappy feelings you have for them… face it, you’ve got bigger problems than finding a florist that’s not out of roses.
But it’s easier to hate the holiday for Intelligent reasons when you’re in the demographic that’s NOT being excluded from the festivities. Sure, once you go to a trendy nightclub, you see the drinks are watered down, the bathrooms are cramped and dirty, and the music sucks. But if you’re not allowed in… you STILL want to go. Because despite the bad things… you *can* have a lot of fun.
I know I start hating it early on in January. That’s when all the stores start putting out the Valentine decorations, candy boxes, cards and whatnot. I can’t go pick up some shaving gel at CVS without walking by the ENTIRE product line of Transformers Valentine Cards. (Yeah, they’re for the kids… but is that REALLY how we want to introduce the concepts of love and affection to our youth? With a product tie-in to a Michael Bay movie? *shudder*) I started noticing in High School, that I always found myself to be depressed during the first part of the year. Wasn’t sure why… for a long time, I thought it was just generalized “Winter Blues”, and the funk would eventually pass once it hit Spring. I assumed it was an “everything is cold and dead… I want the Spring where there’s new life and color, etc” kind of thing.
But I was never sure if my loneliness and hatred of Valentine’s Day was a Symptom of the Winter Funk… or one of the Causes of it. I wonder if it’s a “little of column A, little of column B” kind of thing.
When you’re single, it feels like Valentine’s Day is being shoved down your throat constantly. I know a lot of “taken” people feel it too, but I think the pressure THEY feel is more of a commercial one. Pressure to spend money here, there and everywhere… Capitalism at its finest. But being single… the pressure feels more like, “Here’s an exclusive club that YOU are not cool enough to be part of! Beat it, loser!” You start thinking, “Well… I’d LIKE to buy something for someone… but I don’t have that someone to buy something for.” Next thing you know, you’re feeling depressed because you’re almost not being *allowed* to spend your own money. Yeah, it doesn’t make sense… but we’re humans, when was the last time *anything* we did make sense? (When Jeebus is born, we prepare for a fat guy to bypass our security and break into our homes. When he dies? A rabbit steals a chicken’s kids, camouflages them, and hides them in a field, some never to be seen again. Where the hell do we come up with this stuff?)
It’s about that time when you start reverting to the Intelligent arguments of the Taken Who Hate Valentines Day (the TWHVD)… “It’s just a stupid, lame, senseless reason!”
Thing is… and I think deep down, we all know it… Stupid, lame, senseless reasons… are fun.
Yeah, they’re stupid. Yeah, they’re lame. Definitely senseless. No argument there. But it’s like when you spontaneously decide to do something spontaneous… and be redundantly redundant… (Eventually, everyone does it) and then you’re asked, “What’s the occasion?”
It’s the same logic. Like having an “Arbor Day Celebration”. Who the hell actually *celebrates* Arbor Day? It’s just a lame, cheap excuse to get together with friends or family and have a good time.
And a lot of times, we NEED lame reasons. “No, I can’t go out. I have to work in the morning. Besides, why tonight? Oh… Canadian Boxing Day, you say? Hmmm…. Well, okay… ONE drink.”
Having a silly, lame reason is better than not having any reason at all. Even the reason, “Because I love you” is technically an excuse. If we honestly did things for NO reason at all… we’d buy romantic dinners for complete strangers. Why? No reason. Now factor in the myriad of other possibilities and situations, you’d realize more of us would be doing Hard Time in Sing-Sing in such a world. The term “Sociopath” would take on a much broader meaning.
So we need lame reasons. We WANT lame reasons. Sure the underlying concept of Valentine’s Day is a money-grubbing one… but the sales pitch is nice. And when I finally DID celebrate it… I very much enjoyed it.
I’ve celebrated Valentine’s Day (and not in the Anti-fashion) twice. Both with different women.
The first one, I almost missed… through no fault of my own. I didn’t “forget it” or neglect anything… but I had a theatre festival to go to at the time, and one of the days of this festival was on Valentine’s Day. So, I was going to be out of town, away from my girlfriend. She understood, and we decided that when I got back that weekend, we’d celebrate it then. But the actual day… looked like I was going to miss it. Morning of the 14th came… my friends and I checked the roster for the competition we were in, and saw we didn’t advance to the next round (not that we were really caring to), looked at some of the upcoming seminars, and weren’t that interested in them. So, we decided to save some money, and drive back early. I consciously did NOT tell my girlfriend… preferring to surprise her. One of my female friends helped me get a nice gift… on her recommendation, I got a cute pajama set (we hadn’t been dating that long, and my friend suggested that anything more extravagant would be too much), wrapped up nicely… and now instead of waiting till the weekend, I’d get to actually have a “Valentine’s Day” for the first time.
I called her place when I got home that evening (after a 5-6 hour drive), and got her roommate. She was at the library, studying. Sweet! Told the roommate I was in town, and coming over… and NOT tell my girlfriend. She loved the idea; let me in when I got there. I placed the gift neatly on her bed… then promptly hid under it (the bed). I waited there for about 45 minutes or so. (I had no problem with it… there’s no length I will not go to for my Master Plans), and then heard her come home. Her roommate said Hi… gave no indication I was there. My girlfriend came into her bedroom, and then walked back out to her roommate… “uh… did anyone come by?” “No, I’ve been here all evening.” “Well… there’s a wrapped box on my bed.” “I dunno.”
She came back in (all I could see was her feet), and I could hear her slowly unwrap the gift. She sounded pleased and touched when she read the card and saw the PJs… and then I grabbed her ankle. Shocked her for a second, then when I crawled out, she squealed happily as women do. Once I worked out the cramps (not a lot of room under that bed)… we made ourselves a nice modest college student romantic dinner, and had our Valentine’s Day… ON Valentine’s Day.
Afterwards, I thought to myself, “So THAT’S Valentine’s Day, huh? I approve.”
I don’t think it’s a coincidence that I did NOT have my normal “Winter Blues” that year.
The next time I celebrated Valentine’s Day was with my last relationship. Yes, THAT relationship. The ill-fated one. But this was way back when things were good. Nay, things were GREAT.
Now, I had been dating her for about the same time as I had dated my other Valentine when said V-day arrived. (Just worked out that way. I don’t start relationships at only one time of the year) So, taking the old advice from my Grad School days, I was thinking that something similar would be appropriate. I wasn’t going to get the EXACT same kind of gift, another set of PJs, but something that wouldn’t cross the “Extravagant Boundary”. Then it so happened I was talking to one of my Aunts on the phone. She asked about our plans and what I was going to get her. I told her the ideas I was thinking about and she pretty much vetoed it right there. I guess there is no “Extravagant Boundary”… she told me that “Valentine’s Day is for jewelry. If you do not get her jewelry… I *will* kill you.”
Needless to say, I got her jewelry. Because my Aunt really would kill me. She don’t mess around.
I got her some nice earrings and a matching necklace… I thought they were very pretty (the jewel was my favorite color) and would look good on her. When I was buying them, I was simultaneously on the phone to my best friend who was helping me pick them out from 4,000 miles away. I would describe them, she’d veto or allow it. I thought we did a good job. On V-day, we dressed up fancy, went to a nice restaurant that I had wanted to take her to, and had them sitting on her plate when she returned from the restroom. She looked at me with that sly grin on her face while I did what I do really well…. Play stupid. “Huh? What? What are you talking about? I don’t know where those came from…”
I had a great time… (I hope she did too… hell, I just loved being with her), and when we got back to her apartment, she gave me her gift to me… a copy of Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow. WITH a free promotional T-shirt. :) Romantic? Maybe not in the normal sense… but I am a proud Geek, and it was EXACTLY what I wanted. That night, we cuddled and watched Sky Captain together… and I remember thinking that just being there with her… was the best Valentine’s Day I’ve ever had. And the Winter Blues never seemed further away.
That V-Day was 3 years ago.
And now… “Tis the season”, you might say. And I’ve been feeling the Funk. And not in the cool way that George Clinton and Parliament would promote. Ain’t no cool dancing or bright colors around here.
Last year, I started to wonder if she still wears that necklace and earrings I gave her. At first, I figured, “Why wouldn’t she?” If they look nice, and match the outfit, and they’re hers… there’s no reason she shouldn’t. Then again… I feel uncomfortable wearing that Sky Captain shirt. (Though the life-span of a cotton t-shirt is significantly less than that of jewelry… as well as fewer formal opportunities where it would be appropriate… right now, I think its packed up somewhere in storage. Maybe I should just toss it.) Maybe it was just the reminder for me... Good memories that you want to forget. *shrug* I have no idea of her thoughts about the subject, or if there even ARE thoughts about it. In fact, I probably shouldn’t even be having thoughts about it… not even for Blog Fodder. Just re-surfaces memories that I don’t want.
But it’s BECAUSE of those memories that seem to be making this time of year even more painful than it used to be. Not because I miss her… but in all honesty… the thought of actually trusting someone again… seriously has been making me *nauseous*. Sometimes I think I’ve been completely turned off to the idea of dating again. Completely. After the failure of the relationship, once I tried to put myself back out there… I seemed to find nothing but reasons to NOT put myself out there. Overenthusiastic cyber-dates, lame head-games and more circles than the Daytona 500.
It never used to bother me if a woman mentioned she has “a lot of male friends”… now, my suspicions jump up. Especially when I’m told that one in particular is “just like me, and we’d have SO much in common, we’d be instant friends, etc”
I know saying this may not make much sense, or make me seem egotistical or whatever… But I’m different. I know this. I actually THINK differently than most people. My thought processes are “different”, and sometimes affects the conclusions I come to. Or I’ll come to a normal conclusion in a completely different way. I’ve confused many a people with my reasonings when I try to explain myself. It’s hard to explain how… but it just is. I’m not saying I need medication or have weird psychological issues… But the only way I can describe it… is that it’s “different”. And EVERY single time I’ve met another guy that appears to “think” like me, or act that way… has turned out to be just that. An act. I work hard to be a good person and be 100% on the level, and when I meet some guy that APPEARS to be “just like me”… he’s always turned out to be Scum. Now you can ask, “So what makes you so special that makes you think you’re the only one ‘on-the-level’? Why can’t someone else try to be nice and sincere?” And I won’t have an answer. I’m sure plenty of them consider themselves to be Genuine and Nice. But when they turn around and let the Scum colors show (invisible possibly to themselves… the first victim of a Liar is the Liar himself), I can tell you right now, it is NOT the conclusions and actions *I* would come to. And how do I know this? Because inevitably I’ve already BEEN in a similar situation, and I clearly didn’t.
Like I said… I know that may not look to be “sincere”, but rather my own ego-stroking… and who knows, maybe it is. But it’s the only way I know to say it.
All my friends are different from me. Yeah, we have similarities, but ultimately, they’re all different. That’s why they’re my friends, and I trust them.
If someone is “just like me”…Well… I can trust myself. I can’t trust them.
(I feel like sense has just gone completely out the window here… *shrug* Gotta try and bring this back around…)
I wrote in an earlier blog: “I’m desperate for someone to trust. Because I’ve been having such a hard time doing so for so long.”
I consciously know I have to let myself do it… but it feels like I can’t. Because I know that most likely… my next relationship won’t be “the one”. I’ll have other breakups, and relationships that “don’t work out”. And that idea frightens the ever-living piss out of me.
I just don’t want to put myself out there again. I swear, if I didn’t have such an aversion to Penises other than my own… I’d totally go Gay. Just on principle alone.
And I’m sure most people would look at my old experiences… and think they’re not that bad. Most would probably recover after a while, and move on to other relationships, other heartaches, other good times.
But remember: I think differently.
I was Emotionally Cheated on. Maybe if I was Physically Cheated on, this would have been easier to handle… while the reverse would be true for a lot of others.
But I can NOT go through all that again. It took too much out of me. Emotionally AND physically.
Either way, my opinion this year stays the same.
Valentine’s Day blows. I’m breaking out the Horror films.