Thursday, February 14, 2008

Love gets dated

Who needs this day right?

Tell me the meaning of Valentine's Day. You gotta set a day in the year aside for birthdays. Celebrating it any other day won't do. Same goes for memorial days like Australia Day and Anzac Day, lest we forget. But a Valentine's Day? Do we really need a set day in the year to celebrate our love—in whichever sense you take it? Love is the only thing you can't have an anniversary of. If it's ever there, love is too large and too close a presence to need reminding, and too pragmatic to get exclusive attention only one day in a year.

I'll tell you what Valentine's Day is for. It's for those who can't decide on when to celebrate their love—if they haven't already realized there isn't a single day when you shouldn't celebrate. It's also for those who want, for at least a day, to forget love. Love in it's truest, day-in-and-day-out sense. Without February 14th, most people would probably lose the only chance they have of being treated the way they aren't treated the rest of the year... like getting expensive boxes of chocolates wrapped up in glossy ribbons, receiving scented cards written with notes on feelings and good opinions, or walking on rose-petaled hallways.

In a word, pampered.

Love on the rest of the days is hard work and stripped of pretense. You see the other person in their realest form and most of the time it leaves much to be desired. The sad part of it all is that you know you're stuck with an imperfect person when you're secretly gauging them against ever-increasing standards. I for one am a perfectionist, and therefore do not condemn the desire for perfection. I believe we're made for perfection. That's what I believe Valentine's Day is for. To create a fleeting illusion of perfection in the other person through royal treatments.

Why don't we do what we do on Valentine's Day everyday? A culture that makes a day for love will soon need to make appointments to love.

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