Print Edition: February 6, 2013
Wind: It needs to be stated outright that, even as a married woman, I think Valentine’s Day is pointless and manipulative. It represents everything that is wrong with relationships, consumerism and poetry.
Rock: Sounds like somebody has some unresolved tension in their relationship with Hallmark Day.
Wind: We parted ways a long time ago. Not for any heartbreaking Hollywood reason. I realized my money and the money of whoever was buying me presents could be better spent elsewhere.
Rock: I agree with “elsewhere.” I don’t actually like chocolate that much. One year, to combat Valentine’s Day-itis, the plan was to drink beer and watch 300. Up yours, Hallmark!
Wind: I spent my first Valentine’s with my now-husband in a sea of Canadians in downtown Vancouver, when Canada won their first gold in the 2010 Olympics. Not exactly romantic when the drunk guy next to you is, well, drunk.
Rock: Are you implying “drunk” and “romance” are mutually exclusive?
Wind: The goal was not to be romantic with the drunk guy egging us on.
Rock: What are some other ways the general population can avoid the sickeningly sweet holiday we all love to hate? Beer. Violent movies. Olympics? Do we really need a day for loving each other? How do you plan to spend the day with now-husband this year, Mrs. Wind?
Wind: A Good Day to Die Hard comes out that day. I think we’ll go see it with my dad and drink white Russians. Seriously, the day is just a breeding ground for manipulation in a relationship. You get all stressed out trying to get the perfect gift to say “I love you,” because obviously February 14 is the perfect day to say that – and the other 364 days of the year are just “Yeah, you’re pretty cool” days.
Rock: I think I might give out Valentines in April. Just to mess with everyone’s minds.
Wind: At least I would know you really care.
Rock: Well, not to spoil it or anything, but I will probably get my Valentines out relatively on time. I know it’s just some dumb day that a card company picked out, but I honestly appreciate the excuse to tell people I care. Friends. Family. I make up my own dumb little cards and let the effort show. By which I mean my stupendous lack of craft skills. It’s the thought that counts.
On the other hand, I know I’m in the slim, slim minority; almost everyone I know, including several of my brother’s psychotic exgirlfriends, take Valentine’s Day to the extreme – flowers, chocolates, cupcakes, dinner, large and useless stuffed animals.
Wind: Ridiculous. What economy is benefiting from the boom in carnation and heart-shaped chocolate sales in February?
Rock: The problem is we live in a world based on buying stuff, just to fit into the roles we think we should. For Valentine’s Day we try to package love and sell that too. Is it even possible for a Valentine’s Day gesture to come from the heart any more? Or would you prefer a random act of appreciation on some other unannounced day?
Wind: Random for sure. 100 per cent without a doubt. It take a lot more effort to think about buying something sweet just because, rather than listening to the posters telling me to send a candy gram. My now husband once left a new movie in the passenger seat of my car after a long day of work. Just because.
Rock: Was it Die Hard?
Wind: No, technically that’s a Christmas movie.
Rock: … I think that’s something for us to dive into at Christmas. But although I can agree with the “just because” sentiment, I know myself too well for that. I can barely do anything without a deadline. If it’s something I can put off, I will. How do you combat that and remember to do something sweet?
Wind: I never claimed to be good at the random acts of affection. I just think they say more about love than Hallmark ever could.
Rock: I think you’re totally right, even if it’s a once-every-threeyears thing instead of an annual celebration.
Wind: If you get to that once-every-three-years point, you must be doing something right. I don’t think we have addressed Hallmark enough. Hallmark is where poetry goes to die. It’s like the commercial industry for actors. Like jingles for musicians. Why do they insist on pumping out such pathetic representations of the written word? Better yet, why do people buy them? You want to show love? Write your own damn love letters.
Rock: Not everyone can write, that’s the problem. Or they don’t trust themselves to. It’s hard to tell you, “This is what I like about you.” What if that makes you mad? I’d better stick to roses are red and those blue flowers are blue. Open and shut.
Wind: Open and shut like the card. No second glance, none of that internalizing the words business. Certainly not the scene from Easy A where she opens the card so much that the song inside dies. At least if you write your own terrible words to your Valentine, they’ll remember. Hopefully.
Rock: Maybe. But maybe not. What terrible words are you writing in the card this year?
Wind: That suggests that I am writing a card, which would mean I was letting the day win. You?
Rock: You’ll have to wait until I give you your Valentine, kid.