Over at YourTango.com’s Love Buzz, blogger Melissa Noble polled 50 men to find out how many of them know the actual date of Valentine’s Day, which is, I guess, a slightly bigger stumper than “Who’s buried in Grant’s Tomb?”. For the results, just read her post’s curiously-punctuated title: “20% of Men Don’t Know The Date of Valentine’s Day Which means 80 percent of men DO know the date of Valentine’s Day. Whew.”
Despite being taught the necessity of buying and exchanging Valentine’s Day cards (often in bulk) from pre-school on, I have to admit…I have at times, well, forgotten Valentine’s Day. Not very ladylike behavior, I suppose, as Noble writes: “Most women we know either relish or dread February 14th.” But…really? Women are that fixated on Valentine’s Day? And same-sex couples…well, never mind them, I guess? Or, beyond all that, is it really so black and white (and red all over)? Is there room to observe it our own way, because hey, why not, it’s here, it could be nice, without making such a giant cuckoo deal?
I mean, my college crush and I thought ourselves so evolved as to be post-Valentine’s Day. We decided no cards, presents or even candied hearts. Instead we sat in a smoky café with our friends, reading Kierkegaard out loud, dressed in black, sipping lattes. At the time, it was perfect. He loved it. I loved it. There were no false expectations. Now, the odds that I’ll observe the holiday that way today are about the same as that of Hallmark coming out with a card criticizing 19th-century Hegelianism and celebrating the priority of concrete human reality over abstract thinking, but still. It was fun.
So tell us: What are some ways you’ve observed, ignored, or something in between, Valentine’s Day? That is, assuming you even knew the date.