I Myth You: Truths About V-Day

Happy Valentine’s Day, if you’re into that sort of thing. Funny, the only time I ever cared about V-Day was when I didn’t have anybody to share it with. Back then, I was all, “Woe is me! I’m all alone while all these couples are having romantic celebrations!” I didn’t even really know what these imagined romantic celebrations consisted of, though I was fairly certain they ended with a romp in the sheets, which was enough to justify their existence at the time.

Not that I ever admitted this to anybody, of course. Instead, I adopted a holier-than-thou stance. In the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Jim Carrey’s character famously states, “Valentine’s Day was invented by greeting card companies to make people feel like crap.” I would repeat this ad nauseam to anybody who cared to listen, proud of my anti-Capitalist rant. When a friend said that Valentine’s Day had been happening since Roman times and the idea that Hallmark invented it was a myth, I replied that the Romans also invented gladiator matches but I didn’t see armed combatants fighting to the death before crowds of bloodthirsty spectators anymore, which is admittedly twisted logic, but I had to defend my position, you know? Plus, I kinda forgot about Black Friday. I’ve seen video of angry mobs fighting over the last 55″ TV in stock, and it’s even uglier than those Colosseum battles.


When Tara and I got together, our first Valentine’s Day was romantic. We celebrated by getting all dressed up and enjoying a fancy dinner at Jake’s Famous Crawfish seafood restaurant in downtown Portland. I even drew a red heart on the plate using the frosting from our cheesecake.

Our second V-Day as a couple was a little more conservative. It went something like this:

Me: So, would you like to go out to dinner?
Tara: I don’t really feel like dealing with all those crowds. Unless you really want to.
Me: That’s okay. Let’s skip the fancy meal and just exchange cards instead.
Tara: Perfect!

Valentine’s Day #3:

Me: You didn’t want to go out, did you?
Tara: Hell, no! And don’t you dare get me a card, either.
Me: Deal!

And then I proceeded to make an off-color joke about “having a heart on for you.”

Funny how things change once you’re in a committed relationship. It’s not that we aren’t romantic. We’ve been together for eight years now, and we’re actually still sickeningly sweet toward one another most days. Just not on the one day where you’re supposed to be sickeningly sweet toward one another. I chalk this up to our rebellious nature, a sort of damn-the-man ethos, if you will.


Nowadays, I am pretty ambivalent about the holiday. I don’t begrudge those who like to pull out all the romantic stops and I won’t trot out all that made-up holiday nonsense. When you think about it, all holidays are made up, right?

We’ll celebrate tonight by partaking in our favorite Friday pastime: playing cards in the basement while listening to records and enjoying cocktails. Knowing me, there will be another off-color joke or two.

And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Happy V-Day (or not), you crazy fools in love!

22 thoughts on “I Myth You: Truths About V-Day

  1. I’ve always been a fan of the holiday, ever since I had a paper lunch bag taped to the side of my desk and hoped for a special Valentine from whomever I had a crush on that year.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think when you’re with the right person, it becomes another special day among the many you have all the time! As you stated, you don’t need one day to share your romance as you do it most days. Like now for my fiancé and I, we don’t have date nights as almost every night is a date night. We simply enjoy each other every day and don’t need special time because all time with each other is special.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Is that a pic of you and your lady-love? Not the sword-swinging one, the other one. 😀 Cute.

    I had too many carbs yesterday, topped with a glass of wine, and crashed by 8:30 last night. 😐 I hate commercialization of holidays.

    Anyway you can buy Easter chocolates now if you’re into that sort of thing. 😵

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Mark, many years ago I actually shared a post on my feelings about Valentine’s Day. I feel that whether you’re in a one-on-one relationship with someone or not, you can still celebrate the holiday because to me, love is love, regardless of whether it’s with one special person, or friends, or family, or even people you work with.

    Valentine’s Day is simply about remembering the “love” in your life.

    Have a faaaaaaaabulous weekend, my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hear! Hear! I haven’t enjoyed it since the grammar school days of boxes stuffed with cards and treats. We don’t do special romantic things on February 14 but we do have a “Valentine” all the time cause love and whatnot.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. In high school I was a bagger in a grocery store (soon to be promoted to the exalted status of “cashier,” but I didn’t know that yet). Anyway, one Valentine’s Day I was assigned to the “10 items or less” line. Guess where all the last minute Valentine’s shoppers went? That’s right, to my fast lane with their greeting cards and bouquets and boxes of chocolate. I was boyfriendless at the time (as I was through most of high school… late bloomer, me) and it was all I could do to no bust out bawling my entire shift. I swear I had tears in my eyes the whole time.

    Nowadays it’s either dinner out (this particular Valentine’s Day it was at the decidedly unromantic hour of 4:30pm… right about the time the 90-year-olds are eating), but nothing too fancy or trendy because that’s just a pain to get all dressed up and fight traffic, or else a slightly gussied-up dinner at home. We have a ban on gifts, chocolates, and flowers.

    Everybody’s got their own rules: fancy or casual, stay in or go out, celebrate or boycott. It’s all good.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I laughed out loud when I read the part about the 90-year-olds. Only because it’s true! It’s weird how the older you get, the earlier you eat. Of course, you’re also often in bed by 7:00, so I suppose an early dinner is a necessity. Glad you had a nice V-Day and are no longer bursting into tears in the supermarket!

      Liked by 1 person

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