Valentine’s Day: All My Thoughts

390242855_a107ca92ceValentine’s day looms and I’ve deftly avoided the topic by not posting new stuff lately. Brilliant!

But I guess it’s time for my annual rant against the Big Machine and the perpetuation of the belief that, hey, if it’s love, it’s worth going broke for.

I know men buy gifts because they feel obligated. I know women usually like receiving the gifts. I just wish both sides of this equation would get over the bullshit and just accept it’s not really doing a lot of good for either of them.

Relationships die because either people change or they just don’t want to work on the relationship anymore. Not because a diamond ring wasn’t forthcoming soon enough.

Having one big pompous night of obligatory romance isn’t going to save shit.

In reality, if you’re doing Valentine’s because the pressure is on, and you’re not really feeling it as a couple, going out and being around all the sickingly “happy” couples isn’t going to help you find your happy place, no matter how big your magnifying glass is.

If you want your relationship to work, it takes that effort week-in, week-out.

Here in Vancouver, it’s Olympics time.

The foolish people will still be trying to book romantic evenings out. Sure, great. Want to know how that’ll unfold? Rain’s forecasted. Parking’s virtually impossible as the Olympics OPEN this week with an expected daily influx of 4 Super Bowls worth of traffic. Oh, and it’s Chinese New Year Sunday, too, which, when you have the Asian population WE have, is a big thing as well.

In one of the most expensive cities going, prices everywhere are jacked for “special event pricing” for at least the next week.

Is it really worth it? Seriously?

It’s not too late to be non-traditional.

Order from indish.ca by tomorrow for a $92 gourmet meal for two with dessert’n’everything. You get it delivered, throw dinner together, throw your partner on the floor, shag like silly, and eat in between. Or maybe that’s my approach, but you can certainly wing something, I’m sure. I hear people like eating at tables, too, so you could always give THAT a try. Radical, I know, but…

Do an adventure day like ziplining. Be a tourist in your town. Try getting couples’ photography done by someone like Nordica here in Vancouver. By the end of it, you’ll have something that reflects an entire time in your life, or a great memory of a Different Day,  rather than a night that breaks your wallet and probably won’t be that original.

Or screw the calendar and commit to a date night a week for X amount of weeks instead — weekly connecting on a bigger level will pay off with bigger results. Communicate on purpose, plan ahead, make it fun stuff you’ve both been wanting to do, not your standard dinner-movie deal.

This year, maybe it’s time to have a real conversation about “Valentine’s” Day and see if it’s really something you need to bother with. Maybe you just need to re-commit to each other and make a decision to explore more fun sex on occasions, and discuss how you’d like to try that approach, or take the time to enjoy good homecooked-together meals, or just find a way to express each other’s value in words and actions, not just suffer maxed-out credit cards.

The Big Machine’s out there telling people like me we’re broken ‘cos we’re not scooped up by some fabulous lover already. It’s banging the message down our throat — a diamond is forever, you’re nobody till somebody loves you, yada-fuckin’-yada.

And every year people gripe and moan about it, saying, “Oh, it’s an unnecessary day! They’re just milking us!”

And, YET, like little lemmings and their sheepy friends, back out you go, buying the Valentine’s Day gift or sucking up the overpriced meal for a perceived “romantic” night spent in the company of complete strangers, being served by someone who’d rather be at home shagging their lover.

Yeah.

People fuckin’ baffle me. Don’t like the day? DON’T PARTICIPATE. Or else shut up about it. The hypocrisy is blinding me.

But, for the love of god, if you ARE in a relationship, know this: It deserves more, and better, than one stupid night of recognition.

If you have love in your life, cherish it. Show it the respect it deserves. Be the best partner you can be to your lover. And do NOT underestimate the importance of a GREAT sex life to keeping your relationship happy.

Anyone selling the “Oh, sexless relationships are good too” mantra needs a fucking reality check.

Sex matters. Communication matters.

Trinkets do not. Overpriced restaurants do not.

Be real with each other.

Maybe that starts with NOT doing Valentine’s like usual.

Maybe next year you can play with the big kids like me and realize it’s not a day you need in your life at all.

Especially if you know how to lock the doors, avoid the world, and spend a weekend wrapped up in each other with nothing but delivery food, fuzzy blankets, and DVDs you probably won’t actually see a lot of.

But, you know, you wanna fuck around with that four-star joint, parking when it’s nearly impossible, and stressing about making a reservation time instead of just enjoying each other? Okay. You do that.

When it comes to me sitting around wishing I had someone in my life, though, I won’t be wishing we could spend more time driving around parkades trying to find a spot or being proper with the fancy people as some annoying waiter tells me what the specials are.

When it comes around to me wishing what I had? It’d be lazy Sunday mornings burrowing into each other, or that night when cancelling all the plans in order to close all the curtains and lie around with each other just BEING there.

Well, I’ve always been a little odd. Maybe I’m the one who’s all messed up, ‘cos I still think simple things are the best things.

I’m so last century it hurts. But it’s an easier way to live.

Great thing is, you can choose to be that way too.

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