So February the 14th has been and gone. It is one of my least favourite holidays of the year. I am not opposed to celebrating love, far from it! But here are my thoughts on the day…
Firstly, gestures of this nature brought around by this day should be spontaneous and not because people want to show they love someone and not be confined to a Hallmark money grab! In 2016, the UK blew an estimated £980 million on the day and over a billion Valentine’s Day cards are sent globally each year. Every year I see queues of husbands and boyfriends wandering Tesco aisles after work hurriedly buying flowers and chocolates because they forgot about the occasion.
Restaurants are pushed to the limits with couples panic booking tables and being crammed into packed restaurants trying to make out what their beloved is saying through the noise of chatter throughout the room as the waiting staff desperately try to cater to every whim to make everyone’s Valentine’s Day magical. The whole day is just ridiculous!
Let’s face it, Christmas has been and gone and everyone is thankful for their January pay cheques to breath life back into dusty and bleak bank accounts. Do people really need to spend more money because of the status quo? Santa brought us all presents less than 8 weeks ago! If you do feel the need to receive more presents, well… you’re just greedy. (Obviously occasions like Birthdays are an exception here.) A national consumer spending survey showed that 53% of women would end their relationship if they didn’t get something on Valentine’s Day…. and they say that love is blind?!
Now to social media….We are being told that our increasing addiction to social media is fanning the flames of narcissism and anxiety and the streams of declarations of love are eye watering and pointless. Maybe declare your love when corporate bosses arn’t telling you to and do it on one of the many other opportunities you have throughout the year. How about on an anniversary or end of the year or just when your partner does something nice and out of the blue? Tags like #ilovehim and #luckygirl will get you like or two but just because your other half buys you a million perfectly Instagram filtered roses doesn’t mean you are actually happy, nor that they actually love you.
We have all been those people who experience those co-workers who receive the corny ridiculously sized bouquets of roses that is larger than the poor and exhausted Interflora delivery man at their workplace. These displays are more about satisfying the buyer’s ego than them actually loving the recipient. The recipient obviously makes a fuss and is ‘ utterly shocked’ despite her receiving the spectacle every year whilst her colleagues gawk and clearly makes everyone else in the office feel insecure as she falsely exclaims how she’s surprised at the ‘spontaneous gesture’ and then making a huge fuss on how she will get them home. Try getting flowers on a random Tuesday in September…. then it’s a proper surprise and doesn’t make you look quite frankly, a materialistic saddo with an egotistical partner.
The single ladies and gents out there… they probably spend a reasonable amount of money too. Be it a new outfit for a panic date they’ve secured on Tinder so they aren’t seen to be alone on Valentine’s Day or a girls/lads night out to prove that they’re ‘strong, confident, independent people’. All because they are made to feel like rubbish by businesses because they haven’t found their soul mate. So what if you haven’t found your lobster yet?! You shouldn’t be made to feel rubbish because of that, particularly from dewy eyed couples making over the top gestures of love.
Apparently I’m not the only one who think the celebration is utter nonsense. 47% of people in the UK in 2016 claimed to have done nothing on February 14th. This year I spent my evening with the Mr, watching episodes of “It’s always Sunny in Philadelphia” with a glass or two of wine and dinner. It was a standard Wednesday. I love the idea of love but it’s a 365 day job. Not just one day.
However it’s not all that bad, I will enjoy the heavily discounted chocolate that will no doubt be on sale as of today and be glad to see the back of old St Valentine for another year.