Re-imagining Valentine’s Day

There's still time to break up with him.

Claire Geare, Travel editor

Ahh, Valentine’s Day at Cactus Shadows. I personally can’t wait. Desperate teenage boys throwing gifts at their girlfriends of a mere two weeks. Freshmen still high off their fifteenth birthday complaining they’ll be “forever alone.” The semi-dangerous amount of balloons that will inevitably fly away by fourth period. Its poetic irony rivals that of Shakespeare.

Valentine’s Day is named after the Christian martyr St. Valentine, which, when you think about it makes perfect sense because it feels that those in love crave some sort of constant suffering. Seriously, you guys couldn’t get any dumber. Last year, Americans lost 143 million dollars in online relationship scams, and let me tell you right now: that prince of Nigeria that emailed you really isn’t looking for anything serious. 

Not to mention, Valentine’s Day in high school starts to get a little bit… weird. Half-hearted valentines are flying at you from all directions—your Mom, your teachers, your friends—yet there are 16-year-old girls who just spent 63 dollars on a sweatshirt for their boyfriend, Luke or Hunter or Jake or Ryan. Doesn’t matter, really. In a month and a half, that sweatshirt will be in the trash because it’s “too painful” to look at. You could just as easily burn the 63 dollars, or better yet, send it to me in thanks for all the time I’m saving you.

I believe that the only people who truly enjoy Valentine’s Day wear a suit and tie and made approximately 20.7 billion dollars in sales last year, and, if you discount the kids who run the student store, I guarantee that none of them go to Cactus Shadows. It’s really not that I’m against this profit margin, I’m just jealous. Last year, all I got for Valentine’s day was some math homework, but honestly, and don’t tell my math homework this, a cool million would’ve done just fine to fill the void.

This is all starting to sound a bit negative, so let me make one thing clear: I am not against Valentine’s Day. I simply want to return to the true origins of this watered-down capitalist excuse for a holiday, and yes, while Valentine’s cards have been popular since the 15th century, I say why not go back a little further… to the Roman holiday Lupercalia.

Hear me out: a bunch of wild Romans go into the woods for two days straight, sacrifice goats to woo over women, then have a giant party. Actually, it doesn’t sound too far off from Homecoming Week. I know it sounds ludicrous, but next time you bite into one of those nasty strawberry cream-filled chocolates, look me in the eye and tell me you won’t consider my offer.