2014-02-14

Happy Valentine's Day

Last year, I wrote a pretty comprehensive post against all sorts of people who ruin Valentine's Day. I re-read it just now, and I'm happy to say that I still agree with it. I am somewhat ideologically consistent, after all!

This year, my Facebook feed is absolutely brimming with Valentine's Day wishes and celebrations. It's a refreshing change of pace from the usual hating. From this, we can posit a number of potential hypotheses:

  1. I am finally starting to get through to you people. Just kidding. I know I don't have any influence on anyone's Valentine's Day celebration or lack thereof - except for my own, and that of a certain special someone, wink-wink, nudge-nudge, etc.
  2. People in general are feeling happier this year than they were last year. This sounds silly, but I think it's worth considering. The 2012 election is a distant memory, the economy is not exactly exploding, but it's better than it was, there are some good movies out. It's not all good news out there, but it could be that people just feel a little happier these days.
  3. All the haters moved to Google+. This is also a ridiculous assertion, but it's worth noting that all the V-day hate I've seen this year has been on Google+, not Facebook. Coincidence?
  4. My peer group and I are finally growing up. Marriages. Babies. Promotions. We had a good run while we were still irrepressibly immature, but we finally have regular incomes and comfortable home lives. Maybe that makes us more inclined to be happy about Valentine's Day, rather than sad about it.
  5. I've eliminated most of the haters from my peer group. Maybe it's just the 80/20 rule at work. Everyone got tired of reading my Stationary Waves links, and I got tired of reading their anti-V-day hate. Self-sorting occurred. It's possible.
I hope it's obvious that I'm not being totally serious here. But still, in the back of my mind, I hope that reason #2 applies. Life can be a long, hard journey. We could all use a little extra romance in our lives. It's easy to rain on that parade; it's easy to bristle at the pressure of having to be romantic, or being expected to be romantic, but it's still important to get over ourselves long enough to hold someone close and tell them, "I love you."

Of course, it's easy for me to say. After all, Valentine's Day isn't just a philosophical declaration of happiness to me, it's a day I look forward to every year, a day I get to spend with someone who knocks my socks off. Naturally I'd be in favor of having a happy, sappy Valentine's Day - I get to spend it with her.

But as I look over the Facebook photos and hokey little romantic messages flying around out there, I get the sense that many of us have a her or a him in our lives that makes us glad we can have a Happy Valentine's Day. There's no shame in not having found yours, but there's also no shame in having found him or her, and really enjoying it.

Happy Valentine's Day.