Happy belated birthday, Abraham Lincoln!

image courtesy of photobucket.com

February 12 was Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. It’s also my mom’s birthday. Today is February 14, known in some circles as Valentine’s Day.

I myself don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day. Oh, sure–I purchase the mandatory 22 or 23 valentines for my daughter’s classmates. I don’t want her to be outcast from her classmates. But that’s the extent of the festivities. I suppose the fact that my wedding anniversary is four days before February 14 has something to do with my non-celebration, but then I purposely planned a February wedding so that our anniversary would overshadow Valentine’s Day.

Why the disdain for this most romantic of holidays? Because in my experience, it’s always felt manipulative. You may have wonderful Valentine’s Day experiences and memories. I think that’s wonderful. I’m not trying to poo-poo on your fun. But I spent 29 Valentine’s Days as a single person, and these are some of the observations I have made:

  • If you’re single, February 14th may make you more painfully aware of your singleness.
  • Valentine’s Day typically means much more to women than it does to men. It’s sort of a litmus test for men to try and prove their devotion to their significant other based upon how much (or how little) thought went into selecting the gift. I think we put too much pressure on the guys in our lives. Especially on Valentine’s Day.
  • Having worked in an office for several years, it’s been my experience that the majority of my female coworkers would prefer flowers be delivered to the office than have them presented by their husbands or boyfriends at home. That always bugged me. It’s like it’s not enough to show the woman how much she is loved. A man is expected to show everyone else as well.
  • People spend millions of dollars each year on flowers, cards, candy and other gifts meant to express our affection for those we love. I just think that money could be better spent throughout the year.

Yes, I’m horribly unromantic and jaded when it comes to Valentine’s Day, and I know it doesn’t have to be all about romantic love, but all kinds of love. I just hate how commercial it is. Having said that, I do adore a handmade card made with love. Regardless of the occasion:

Thank you, my friend! You made my day.

So to all you hopeless romantics out there, Happy February 14th! Don’t let me spoil your fun! And to all my single friends out there, I send out this long distance dedication:

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17 Responses to “Happy belated birthday, Abraham Lincoln!”

  1. Louise February 14, 2011 at 8:05 am #

    Several years ago a man I was dating sent ‘the flowers’ to my office. I quit dating him. Anyone who thought it was a good idea to send flowers to the office or V-Day or any day was not someone I wanted to get to know on a more intimate level!

    I like your rant. Not jaded. real

    Oh — and Happy Valentine’s Day! 🙂 tee hee

  2. Annie K February 14, 2011 at 8:21 am #

    Happy Monday! (Oh yes, that sounds much better than Happy Valentines Day.)

  3. Amy Nabors February 14, 2011 at 8:48 am #

    I completely agree. I’ve always wondered why people need to be reminded to show their love to someone. My birthday lands just 10 days after & our anniversary just 5 days after that so I don’t celebrate it either.

  4. A Simple Country Girl February 14, 2011 at 9:31 am #

    Yes, the handmade are the only ones allowed in our house too…

    Blessings.

  5. Tony Alicea February 14, 2011 at 10:37 am #

    My favorite movie of all time. Seriously.

  6. barbara February 14, 2011 at 10:50 am #

    I totally boycott Hallmark’s pushy, brand name, only the best cards by buying cheap, run of the mill, dollar store cards for my loved ones. That way I can still afford to buy myself some chocolate:)
    P.s. Love the video

  7. Marni February 14, 2011 at 10:57 am #

    Dane took my wedding rings to be reset. It wasn’t as much $ as we thought, so we took the savings and bought him a new wedding ring (he lost his in a “good deed gone wrong” moment in lake Granbury last summer…but I digress)

    Peyton was with us at the jewelers when I turned to Dane and said “Cool. We both got something and we didn’t have to spend as much as we thought” and then he said “Ya wanna just call this Valentines for each other and be done with it”? I agreed. Peyton rolls her eyes and goes “Wow guys, TOTALLY romantic”. Bless her little snarky heart. But even as happily married, I find Valentines to be so lame. I have no idea why. I think it stems from my annoyance that people need to be reminded to love each other and if you don’t give chocolates and roses, somehow, you aren’t in love. Boo on that.

    And happy birthday Abe. I’m a big fan of your works. And of the $5 bill too.

  8. Jason February 14, 2011 at 11:16 am #

    OK, this is going to look like a Jesus Juke and I don’t mean it that way. 🙂 This is just how I look at Valentine’s Day. It’s a day that when I was single just wasn’t meant for me. Just like Mother’s Day isn’t meant for me. Like Father’s Day wasn’t meant for me before I had children. Sometimes, yeah, it was a little hard on those days but I would celebrate my friends who had received the blessing I hadn’t yet received.

  9. seekingpastor February 14, 2011 at 12:07 pm #

    My 2nd favorite Adam Sandler movie. “Whoop-pi-dee-dooo!”

  10. Jenny February 14, 2011 at 12:12 pm #

    Katrant! Love it 🙂

    I think because I was single for SO.Stinkin.Long – Valentines day has made me super aware of them and what I say around them because couples can be so doggone inconsiderate on what is really a hard day for some folks…

  11. Helen February 14, 2011 at 1:26 pm #

    I love celebrating Valentine’s Day with my sweetie. We order take out from the restaurant we had our first date in (because they knocked the place down and built a fancy place where you can only get their pizza on the take out menu, not in house) and pick a romantic DVD we saw together when we were first dating or engaged. Sometimes we go to Denny’s for coffee like we used to late at night after seeing a movie together before we were married. I am glad we celebrate Valentine’s Day in our own way though, and not as some commercial suggests.

  12. Hazel Moon February 14, 2011 at 4:17 pm #

    I agree that all these new holidays are simply commercialism, such as Grandparents day, Secretaries day and so on. How ever, I always enjoyed Valentines day, when I was in school. My hubby does not celebrate anything, so I am out there. When we were first married, I asked him if he was going to get me anything for Mothers day. His remark was, YOU are not a mother yet, so NO. The bit about flowers delivered at the office, was very revealing. Yes, people, let it be known I am special. And the song Love Stinks, may I suggest that we stone the messenger (singer)? LOL

  13. Larry Hehn February 14, 2011 at 6:02 pm #

    Best combination of Abraham Lincoln and Adam Sandler since Happy Gilmore! Happy February 14th!

  14. Maureen February 14, 2011 at 8:45 pm #

    There was a sort-of funny piece in the Post today. The columnist walked around a department store to test her theory that Valentine’s Day is an adventure in the five stages of grief. That story appeared alongside another of a couple who had been married for more years than my mother’s age; their secret was observing every day as Valentine’s Day.

    Thank you for observing Lincoln’s birthday; not too many do so in the great state of Virginia. I wonder if Mary Todd and he exchanged valentines.

  15. happy June 3, 2012 at 12:34 pm #

    i love your views on this..most holidays have been overruled by commercial ideals

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