The Manufactured Holiday (or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Being Single)

Today is February 14, a day that has no historical, astrological, or mythical significance and very little religious significance. This year it happened to be pleasantly and surprisingly warm for mid-February, but that’s about all I can think of to say about it.

Oh, I almost forgot! Sometime in the 19th century or thereabouts some companies convinced everyone to spend exorbitant amounts of money on chocolate and jewelry on this day every year, taking advantage of the not-particularly-significant-or-profitable lover’s holiday named after Saint Valentine.

It became a big source of income for the chocolate and greeting card and jewelry industries, and they managed to make it so prevalent as to be a societal standard. Not only that, but our culture has embraced it so thoroughly that it actively tries to make people who aren’t romantically involved feel¬†guilty, indirectly, about not supporting these industries.

I’m a single man and I just had the best Valentine’s day of my life.¬†

Why, you ask? Because this year I refused to feel guilty about it. I happen to not be seeing anyone currently, so fucking what? I got myself a nice dinner from Five Guys (their cajun fries are the best thing on this earth), saw a campus screening of Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (which was shockingly ahead of its time for a mainstream film from 1967), and I’m about to go to a screening of Catching Fire.

I’ve had a very nice day, all without giving Hallmark, Ghirardelli, or Kay’s Jewelry a single cent. I think they’ll survive, somehow.

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