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Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Valentine Scrooges

My hubby and I are officially boycotting Valentines Day. Yes, you read right. We have officially become Valentine Scrooges. February 14th? Bah humbug!

Important side note here: Don’t get me wrong. We are NOT boycotting the sentiment behind Valentines Day. Actually, the idea of having a special day devoted to spending time and making an effort for your special someone is kind of nice. One exclusive day to go all out -- flowers, gifts, chocolates, dinner, dancing, the works! I mean, yes, ideally every day should be that way – “every day should be Valentines Day”. But let’s be realistic here! True, we can show our partners we love them every day by doing the little stuff that matters – but once in a while, there needs to be an occasion to jazz things up! Women need that – and believe me, even if they don’t admit it, men need it just as much.

Think of it this way, we celebrate the birth of Christ every Christmas or His glorious resurrection on Easter Sunday, both happen once a year but that does not mean we don’t revere Him the rest of the year. Or birthdays for that matter. We love our family and friends every day (almost every day!)– but we only get them presents, sing to them, and celebrate with cake on their birthdays. In my opinion, we need these occasions to go all out. We need these occasions to have something to look forward to. We need these occasions to break up the monotony of every day life. We need a reason to justify having rich, calorie-laden, decadent desserts!

So, to sum up my side note, it is NOT the sentiment of spending one day in a year for our loved one that gets to me – but it is the commercialization of Feb. 14th that leaves me feeling very cynical.

What brought about this realization you might ask. Well, yesterday began quite beautifully with breakfast in bed – prepared quite lovingly by my hubby. If you knew Jojo well enough, you would know this was an act of supreme sacrifice. Suffice it to say my hubby is not a morning person, so to get up early, make my favorite breakfast (garlic rice, dried tuyo, sunny-side-up eggs, and tomatoes), and serve it to me – before I was up – was really an act of absolute selflessness and ultimate love! (Again, this is why I am not putting down the sentiment behind Valentines Day).

But later that day, the flowers Jojo ordered to be delivered to my office (which cost three times what they normally would) ended up getting lost. After following up with the florist, we found out they had a huge backlog of orders and, even after paying extra for normally free delivery, the flowers from the shop (on Wilshire Blvd.) did not make the half-mile trip to my office (also on Wilshire Blvd.).

Later that evening, we head out to my surprise dinner at Soho (Thai Fusion Bar & Grill), where Jojo had made dinner reservations. Well, to start with there was no parking. Then since there was a huge number of people, the restaurant had to cancel all reservations and gave us a choice of having to wait 45 minutes to an hour for a table or go somewhere else. We chose the latter and ended up driving around for about an hour at nearby “Valentines-approved” places to have dinner. It was full everywhere. No surprise there. By this time, Jojo was very hungry and I needed to use the restroom badly so we agreed to head home – which is how we ended up having dinner at one of our favorite places, BCD Tofu House (which is very near where we live). While the food is consistently good, it is probably the least romantic place to go – but it served our purposes well, Jojo got to eat and I got to use the restroom.

All in all, the day wasn’t a complete disaster. On the up side, my hubby and I got to exchange gifts (a polo shirt for him and a book for me) plus we got to celebrate together – even if it was probably not quite the way we had planned. So we came up with an agreement, from now on, we plan to celebrate our Hearts Day (our very own Valentines Day) on the first Saturday before Feb. 14th. Maybe by doing that, we still get to enjoy the feeling of the Valentines Day season (get to avail of pre-Valentines Day sales) but avoid all the commercial and money-making propaganda of the day itself.


jol said...

I agree with you completely; valentine day has become too commercialized. It can be celebrated with less fanfare but with more meaning in one own's special way.

consay said...

It is the same here in Manila during Valentines Day. Traffic and parking alone is not worth the time especially for that so called special day. My wife and I just decided to go to Contis Pastry and Restaurant just outside of our residential village. It took us exactly one minute to get there! We just walked in and did not have to wait for a table. We knew we were gonna get a table right away because we saw that we were the only couple. There were families eating, groups of guys and groups girls but as long as it is not hot for couples, there should be a table available. I guess the trick during Valentines Day is to pick a restaurant where you would only be the couple!

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Joanne said...

Yup, sad that it has become so commercial. Looks like we all learned a few tricks over the years. Dad, celebrating at home; Consay, picking a place where you are the only couple; and us, celebrating the Saturday before the 14th! :)

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