How to spend Valentine’s Day without a Valentine

A Victorian-era Valentine's Day card, when mass marketing of the holiday began. Photo: Wikipedia.
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The day for couples is sometimes a thorn in the side of those who are single

Romance, passion and admiration are just some of the terms that our society has branded on Feb. 14, also known as Valentine’s Day. For some people, however, the mood might be marred by the absence of someone to share the day with. Many people believe that it’s difficult to enjoy Valentine’s Day when one is not in a relationship.

However, if you’re single and are determined to escape the threats of melancholia, here are some suggestions for having a happy Valentine’s Day after all.

The most straightforward option for all those who fear spending the day single is to simply ignore it. While this may seem almost impossible at first due to countless advertising slogans in multiple venues stating “Love is in the air,” it is actually easy to ignore Valentine’s Day if one would just bear in mind the facts.

Few people actually know why Feb. 14 is associated with love and romance. Significantly, the origin of Valentine’s Day goes way back to a time when there were no shop windows overflowing with fluffy pink hearts and no cinemas that offer a special romantic screening.

The holiday of love has its roots somewhere in 270 A.D. It is believed by many scholars that around this time, there was a priest living in ancient Rome named Valentine. He lived under Emperor Claudius II, who had banned marriage for soldiers as he believed it made men emotionally unsuited for battle. Valentine, however, felt for all lovers who were denied marriage and began secretly marrying young soldiers to their loves, despite Claudius’s law.

When he was found out, Claudius had Valentine killed, and he was later named a saint. Therefore, our modern Valentine’s Day is not inspired by someone giving red roses to females, but by someone who defied a mighty ruler. Just pretend that all of the pink and red decorations are put up to commemorate political defiance of unjust laws.

Also, it is obvious that the Valentine’s Day we celebrate today is completely and thoroughly characterized by precisely targeted, lovey-dovey marketing, with the anticipated result that the purchase of flowers, chocolates and other romantic gifts is considerably higher than usual. While many people are pulled into this commercial stream, you should be glad that you are not part of this trickery. You can pride yourself on not having to be an easily manipulated sheep at the hands of master marketers.

If this isn’t enough to ignore Valentine’s Day, keep in mind that there are also other utterly non-romantic events that occurred on the Feb. 14, apart from the occurrences around St. Valentine. For example, Penicillin was discovered by Alexander Fleming and Aretha Franklin recorded “Respect.” Therefore, remember that people in the past have done more important things on Feb. 14 than celebrate Valentine’ day. Just follow your usual daily routine and listen to Aretha Franklin while you’re doing it.

However, if you’re unable — or simply unwilling — to ignore the holiday of love, spend it with the ones you love most, your friends and family. Ask your best single friend out on a platonic date and eat all the culinary recommendations for couples. Have a movie night with others. Fortunately, Feb. 14 falls on a Friday this year, which can even be an opportunity to spend the weekend visiting family or friends who don’t live close by. Don’t confuse being single on Valentine’s Day with being alone.

Also, there is the option of making Feb. 14 the day where you treat no one but yourself. You can simply become your own Valentine. Enjoy your singleness and your independence. Do all the things that you wouldn’t be able to do in a relationship. There won’t be many chances in life where you can use the money you would probably spend on someone else’s gift on yourself without feeling guilty. Also, if you feel like it, you can still do the typical things linked to Cupid’s Day by yourself. Eat a box of heart-shaped chocolates and watch a romantic movie.

Lastly, if you sense that you are beginning to feel for yourself, remember that there will also be a Valentine’s Day next year which you might already spend with someone special. Overall, “love” is the term that ultimately brands Valentine’s Day and love is for all.

 

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