I’m a romantic at heart; always trying to find the good in everyone and a happy ever after. However, I find it interesting how materialism (always a part of our culture) is such a large part of Valentine’s Day, the day in which a couple celebrates their love for each other.
How did February 14th come to be a day for lovers? Why candy, flowers, birds and cards?
The man above, on bent knee, is a Christian martyr named Valentine. There are two Valentines we are honoring on February 14th: Valentine of Rome and Valentine of Terni. In the photo you’ll get a visual of Saint Valentine of Rome. He married people despite Claudius II’s law not to marry. He was executed for his beliefs.
Red is the color of martyrs and a symbol for love…hence red hearts.
Doves and lovebirds became a popular love symbol on V-Day when Chaucer mentions it in one of his literary works. Men were gallant in the Romantic Age era.
Cupid or Eros, handsome young man and son of Venus, quickly became a part of V-Day–as a comic winged image with hearts and arrows flying and piercing hearts to ignite love. I adore Cupids…because I’m a fan of mythology and handsome men.
V-Day cards have been around since early 1400 when a woman wrote to her guy. Then in 1800 V-Day cards were sold to the public.
Photo, a rare Esther Howland (circa 1987) borrowed from: http://www.emotionscards.com/museum/vals.html
And in 1901 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Valentine
Current traditions—Da Ta Da…on Valentine’s Day a couple will share their love with confection treats, cards, and typically gifts of flowers and possibly jewelry.
Once I got a vacuum sweeper. Any guys reading this blog, do not and I can’t emphasize this enough, do not buy your sweetheart a household appliance regardless how much you think she really wants it. Ladies, do you agree?
Although, a friend pointed out that flowers are overpriced, sweets put on the pounds so the vacuum didn’t sound so bad.
V-Day, to some, is about expectations. Some gals will hunt for a mate in January in hopes of celebrating V-Day with a bunch of red roses and a box of sweets. Some low life guys will dump their girlfriends simply because they don’t want to spend money on them or in fear they will expect the jewelry…especially the dreaded ring.
Both of these scenarios happened with close friends.
Do you think Saint Valentine would be rolling over in his grave? I believe his goal was to unite two people who had fallen in love and wanted to spend whatever time they had on Earth together. Now, it’s a hunt for a guy to spend the most romantic day of the year with or dump a gal because of the financial factor (and possibly fear).
In the 1980s, the diamond industry began to promote Valentine’s Day as an occasion for giving jewelry. In Jewel Heist I had the designed coveting a bag full of diamonds, before they were snatched by her current boyfriend. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have the artistic ability to design and create your own diamond jewelry?
What are your thoughts? Do you think Valentine’s Day has become too commercial and materialistic?
For me, every day when I walk into work I take a rear entrance. It is totally made of concrete and the last step before I open the doors into the interior of the building is an adorable rust heart. That little bit of orange-red in a heart shape brings me a rush of joy every time.