Down with love – or at least the holiday

Mikhail Chernyavsky:

Mikhail Chernyavsky:

Mikhail Chernyavsky

It is cold outside, the trees are bare and the flowers are still dead. So, it is only fitting that we celebrate the day of love during this cold season. It is that time again in which people can reflect on their relationships, both new and old, over a romantic dinner at an over-priced restaurant that simply regurgitates romance with decorations of flying, naked babies. However, it is different for singles. It is a day on which single people can do some self-searching and discover why they are so repulsive and realize that the key to happiness is in the arms of another, and not in the self-loathing, self-hug of singlehood.

“I hate Valentine’s Day.”

This statement is usually followed by the groundbreaking question, “Why?” In retrospect, it’s a pretty logical, inquisitive question.

How could anyone hate a holiday for love?

It’s really quite easy. No, it has nothing to do with me being single and avoiding any form of a serious relationship since the day of my conception. And no, I am not bitter about being single. What I hate about Valentine’s Day is the commercialism and the unnecessary pressure that it puts on both the singles and the couples.

“(Valentine’s Day) has lost its significance,” junior social work major Catherine Riley said.

I agree. Like every major American holiday that derives from Christianity, Valentine’s Day is just another corporate gig. Turn on the television and watch the commercials. Every year there is at least one commercial that starts out saying, “Get her (or him) what she (or he) really wants this year.” The benefits of these commercials are that they let people know what to get their significant other on the holiday and that humans are entirely materialistic because what they “really” want are shiny things.

“Gifts are not necessary,” freshman chemistry major Joni Greenawalt said. However, she admits that she does enjoy receiving them as she goes on to add up the amount of Tiffany jewelry that she owns.

Remember, America loves shiny things.

It has been “Hallmarked.” The holiday has been played up and has lost that special quality, Greenawalt explained.

There is nothing personal about how this holiday is portrayed. It is about the things we have to do for our significant others, and not the things we should do.

There is a lot of social pressure to do something out of obligation for Valentine’s Day. Why must it be that on this holiday people are supposed to do things for their loved one, when in reality it should be done through little things every other day? This can be done through things such as cooking dinner, if you normally are not the cook.

“It is a day for couples,” Greenawalt said.

Riley added, “It can be depressing if you’re single.”

So like a good marketing strategy, singles have an answer. Single people can go to singles clubs and bars and meet other singles just like them.

I have no idea why anyone would want to go to a place like this and meet people just like themselves, excluding the potential one night stand with whom you will connect with for the night just so it makes it seem like you too can be loved on this passionate of holidays. Let’s face it, you are single for a reason. And the last thing you should want is to meet someone who is just like you. If you are a workaholic and you meet a workaholic that night, you will simply end up where you began. You will bury yourself in work as will she, and before you know it you are at that same bar next Valentine’s Day repeating this circle of life.

So if you have someone this Valentine’s Day, then forget about the have-to-dos, and focus on the want-to-dos. Don’t go out to a restaurant because you have to, but do it because your partner wants to. This Valentine’s Day get them what they really want, some quality time together. That’s what this holiday should be about for couples.

If you are single, who really cares? Valentine’s Day is on Thursday this year, which means you can just catch up on belated homework. Enjoy the fact you are single, and did not have to get or do anything, and let alone deal with the stress of this holiday.

The best thing to do for this holiday is to simply ignore it. The only hope that people can have is that Valentine’s Day dies like the martyr from which its name derives.

Mikhail Chernyavsky can be reached at [email protected]