Valentine schmalentine

It’s round the corner – here’s how to have a great day, regardless.

14th February has become yet another commercial touchstone, turning winter into gold for giftshops, restaurants, florists, perfumiers, jewellers, chocolatiers – anyone who can think up a link to romance, sex, hearts and flowers, Cupid, Eros and the great search for love. Valentine’s Day… hmph.

What about those of us who won’t get a card or a bunch of roses? Who won’t get wined and dined, or be given gifts?

What about those of us who will get a card and maybe a gift and maybe go out to eat somewhere expensive… but only because we sort of have to? Because we’d be in the doodoo if we didn’t?

Next to Christmas and birthdays, Valentine’s Day is the day most likely to make us feel lonely. If we’re already lonely, it can make us feel worse than usual.

But don’t just sit there and let Cupid shoot poisoned arrows at you.

You have options! (read more…)



Martyrs to marketing

There’s more to love than marketing. Poor old St Valentine, who got into trouble for marrying Roman soldiers to their sweethearts against imperial orders, has unwittingly spawned another money-fest in the name of love. It’s great to have a day to celebrate successful relationships and to be a catalyst for new ones – the thought warms one’s heart.

These days, shop window urge us to celebrate a whole week of romance. The day itself isn’t enough for retailers any more. Marketeers have long seized on the martyr’s day to extract cash from guilt-ridden, love-lorn or emotionally-blackmailed swains and spouses, and like the fools we are, we get sucked into it. Marking the occasion for those who feel a genuine wish to tell their love one how important they are, how valued and cherished, is one thing.

The trouble is that anyone who isn’t – for whatever reason – tends to label themselves sad and lonely.  If that’s you, try Singles Appreciation Day. celebrated on February 15 as an alternative to Valentine’s Day; single people celebrate or to commiserate, and to make the point that they don’t need to be in a relationship to enjoy life.

But it’s hard to look at loving couples if you’re longing for a lover and wonder when you’re going to meet the perfect partner. No good telling yourself that single is super if your biological clock is ticking, or you’re grieving for a past love. Valentine’s Day and Christmas Day are probably the hardest days in the year for those feeling the lack of someone to love.

They’re both over now for another year. Make yourself a promise that by next February you’ll be feeling good, enjoying yourself one way or another, no matter what the marketing people want. What are you waiting for? Get started today.