Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! Valentine’s Day on a Monday is a little lame, but I guess it gives the start of the work week a little kick. I know my husband and I usually square off on every issue we toss up in this column, but our views on Valentine’s Day aren’t far apart. While different aspects of this romantic date on the calendar may strike our fancy, we pretty much line up on how we like to celebrate and the degree of importance we feel February 14th deserves. So here are our thoughts on this Cupid-infused Monday.
She Said: Valentine’s Day is a fun holiday, simply speaking. It’s a nice excuse to go out on a date if you’re in a relationship, but it’s not worthy of the extreme excitement and sometimes violent hatred it engenders! I’ve never understood the whole single people getting wasted and toilet papering the ex's house thing; that seems extreme on a holiday that’s designed around heart-shaped cardboard filled with chocolates. The key to Valentine’s Day is keeping it simple and fun. It’s a nice day to share a romantic picnic or dinner and a movie with your other half. If you’re single, go grab a bite with a friend, don’t shred old love letters into mulch and set them on fire. On the same token, if you are happily settled in a relationship, don’t do something obnoxious like hire a skywriter or take a surprise trip to the top of the Empire State Building for a proposal. Valentine’s Day is a little cheesy and overblown, so a nice date, or something even more casual, is all it really deserves.
He Said: My wife and I have always agreed that February 14th is not the day to take a trip to Fiji or bungee jump off a bridge at sunset. It’s more of a day to share the sweetheart meal at Outback Steakhouse or rent funny movies for a mini-marathon. I’ve gotten my wife flowers on many Valentine’s Days and even decorated her desk at work with balloons and candy. It is fun to act a little ridiculous on February 14th, but our most memorable V-Days have been the most low-key. A few years ago when we were very low on cash, we made a pizza and a batch of frosted sugar cookies, constructed a fort out of couch cushions and played original Nintendo until the middle of the night. The whole even cost about $11, but it is still the Valentine’s Day we talk about the most. We gave each other romantic cards, ate a fair amount of indulgent food, and had fun playing a blast from the past video game until the early morning hours. If that kind of an evening doesn’t make you feel bonded to someone, I don’t know what will.
So as you celebrate all the love that’s in the air today, make sure you and your partner have the same kind of holiday in mind. It’s important to communicate to some degree (I’m not advocating taking all the surprise and romance out of it). But what’s more important is understanding that you can share a wonderfully memorable day with someone you love without cheesy grand gestures.