Saturday, February 09, 2008

seasonal musings

So a couple years ago I was thumbing through the Encyclopaedia Britannica because I wanted to know the origins of this Cupid chap who is supposed to be flying around this week. He's Roman, in case you didn't know (I didn't at the time, which is why I was looking him up in the first place). He apparently enjoys archery and he's a menace to our society. Britannica says that his "wounds inspired love or passion in his every victim."

"WOUNDS???" "VICTIM???" He's hunting human prey, for crying out loud! Clearly this guy is a terrorist and needs to be stopped at all costs! We need to ship his wing-ed little ass off to Guantanamo and find out what his real agenda is!

As you may have guessed (if you didn't already know), I find Valentine's Day a disgusting and crass holiday. Even in the days when I had a girlfriend, I still wasn't that fond of it (although I will admit that it was a lot more fun). I don't understand the concept of it, personally. Some poor schlub gets his head lobbed off and I'm supposed to be romantic about it?

"Y'know, honey, we can go out to dinner and a movie anytime. Tonight, why don't we watch someone get martyred?" I don't know about the rest of you, but I certainly get hot just thinking about someone's decapitation. Valentine's Day -- Bah! Humbug!

Which brings me to love itself. Can there be anything as screwed up as this emotion? I find it thoroughly fascinating that while love is the antithesis of hate, it can be just as destructive -- just ask Helen of Troy. Or Shakespeare. Or Leonard Cohen...

The only good thing to come out of it (aside from the continuation of the species, I suppose--which is a diatribe for another time) is what it does to us creatively. Just ask Shakespeare. Or Leonard Cohen...

Our species has created plays, paintings, movies, stories, and, yes, literally thousands of songs according to Rob Fleming (or Rob Gordon if you're a fan of the movie), devoted to love. One could make the argument that the entire entertainment industry was built upon the ideas of love and romance. Hugh Grant alone owes his entire career to it!

This was written by my friend Hagrid - Hagrid is the honorary little brother whom I wish I saw far more often but whom I know I could call at 3 AM for a place to sleep or for bail money. We've been chatting about the holiday season of late and I (with permission) now blatantly post his words, as I thought them most apt to the motivations behind the festivities.

I think that one of the areas where we fall down most readily is in the simple act of telling people whom we love that we love them. Purchasing a box of chocolates or a dozen roses or a three foot long snake with sewn on "be mine" heart (available at my local Kroger) once a year is just not the same.

Apparently teachers get more Valentines each year than spouses get from each other. What does this say about the commercialization of romance?

I hereby call for this to be a week of simply saying,"I love you" - be it to spouses, SOs, siblings, parents, children, pets or even laser printers and coffeepots. Skip the profits and just say it. Then say it again when this week is over.

1 comment:

Drewster said...

First of all, I have to disagree with Hagrid. The continuation of the species has nothing to do with love. The sex drive is instinct alone. That is what seems to drive the male of our species anyway. Certainly there is a stereotype of the bar hopping male who is having plenty of sex without love even being a glimmer, so let's not sully love with basic drive. And then there is the "love that shall not speak its name" which certainly won't continue the species in the usual way.

As love is rightly attributable to more than a person of the opposite sex and the children produced by said union, let's not connect the two so profoundly.

Second, regarding the holiday. It is completely outdated. Just about everything out there in the commercial market is geared to bully men into buying candy, cards, jewelry or whatever for their woman. In this day of equality (mostly) why aren't women asked to do the same? Sure they do, but no one is giving them a sales pitch. Is this because, as a stereotype, women don't need a marketing plan to get them to be thoughtful?

What about the men who have a want to buy for their man? Do they have the ability to transfer the sales pressure to their situation? Or women for women? Do they feel not pressure at all knowing that their "man" isn't succumbing to the guilt?

Oh, and Lemming, I love and miss you tons, even if I don't want you to be the mother of my children, though I am sure you would be a great one if you were.