If you’re the sort of person that doesn’t mind being single, then Valentine’s Day is just another reason to feel like you’re doing something wrong. If you’re like me, then you might not see a point to the exaggerated romantic gestures. Couples setup candle lit dinners, crushes buy giant teddy bears and leave heartfelt love letters in your locker. It’s a time of romance, of heartbreak, and of overall confusion.
So where did this even start? Who decided that there should be an entire day dedicated to this sort of thing? Many of you might know about the story of St. Valentine, a priest who married off lovestruck couples in secret during the reign Claudius III, and was put to death for disobeying the law that young men were to not be married. There is also another theory that Valentine was a man who helped Christians escape harsh prisons in Rome, who fell in love with a young girl and wrote her love letters, starting the popularity of the phrase “From your Valentine”. Yes other evidence suggests that this Christian-based theory could simply be a way of “Christian-izing” the pagan festival of Lupercalia, which occurs during the same time, and celebrates fertility and reproduction.
Over the years, Valentine’s Day has transformed into a day full of roses, chocolates, and teddy bears as a way of expressing the overwhelming sensation of romance. And for some reason, everyone gets it in their head that surprise gestures of love are what Valentine’s Day is all about. To someone not too excited about the day of love, Valentine’s Day is just another holiday that was hypocritically robbed from the Pagan religion and “romanticized” (pun intended) by modern culture.
So don’t worry, dear readers, if you’re sitting home alone watching Netflix and downing a carton of chocolate ice cream. The original Valentine’s Day wasn’t intended for romanticized love and gift giving. In fact, if you want to celebrate correctly, you’d follow through with the Lupercalian tradition: use the skin of a sacrificed goat to slap (gently, of course) both women and crop fields as a way of promoting fertility.