Since the 6th of January I have been getting press releases about Valentine's day. There are going to be free roses going at some station, some romantic getaways are going cheap, dresses with hearts on them are going cheap, personalised cards are the way to say it and you might be interested in a Valentine's manicure.
The thing is anecdotal evidence (which is the best and most reliable kind of evidence) tells me most people don't want the set Valentine's day activities. The terrible realisation for the acute Hayfever sufferer as she receives a bouquet from their partner that he* has no imagination or idea what she actually likes could be enough for a Valentine's day dumping.
It is in fact the least romantic day of the year. Not because the notion of there being a set day on which to celebrate love is kind of anathema to what love is, but because of the hilarious (not hilarious) jokes that abound concerning women's obsession with the day. Valentine's Day seems to have become a day to think of all those reluctant grooms atop wedding cakes (don't get me started on those) and humiliate women for being so very silly. Silly and materialistic. We like shoes and romance and nothing more.
The message of Valentine's day is the humorous 'men, if you don't buy her chocolates, you'll be in trouble!' It's the kind of joke that gets followed by an infuriatingly knowing 'hohoho' (in the Beano sense, not Santa. Santa hasn't actually got the monopoly on 'hohoho' OK? OK). It's sad that if a woman is romantic they are grabbing. If a man is romantic he is a bit wet.
65% of women would prefer cash instead of a present. I hope they all get vouchers.
28% of women "have got dressed up expecting to receive a marriage proposal only not to get one :(" Perhaps this 28% should look to the 75% of women who "explicitly tell their partner what gifts they want to receive".
I propose (hah) Valentine's Day be scrapped in favour of Communication Day, or No Pressure Day, or how about we follow the lead of Leslie Knope and her gals and celebrate Galentine's Day on the 13th. Which to be honest, looks a lot more fun than receiving a teddy bear holding an 'I wuv you' heart and paints a much more honest and kind image of women. Or gals.
*Valentine's Day is usually reserved for heterosexuals. It's certainly very heteronormative.