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Opinion Valentine's Day

Valentine’s Day


Singles can enjoy Feb. 14 without Cupid

Karyn Lewis – Printz Reporter

Valentine’s Day is often associated with couples expressing their unconditional love for one another, but that isn’t the only way the holiday should be celebrated.

Each year couples stress over finding the perfect emblem of their affection, no matter how much it may cost. The National Retail Federation predicts that Americans alone will spend about $19 billion on Valentine’s Day gifts this year. That averages out to each person spending approximately $142.

A positive to being single is that you are one of the Americans who will save, but if you don’t mind spending the extra cash there are alternatives to celebrating the holiday other than being in a romantic relationship.

Everyone isn’t in a romantic relationship, but everyone is in a relationship of some sort. You can express affection to anyone: granny, mom, your neighbor, your dog. Valentine’s Day is simply a day to show those whom you care about the most that you are thinking of them.

Remember in elementary school when everyone brought a Valentine for everyone in the class? You didn’t have to have any commitments to that person. It was simply a gesture of appreciation for that person being himself or herself. That has not changed.

It’s still totally OK to bring personalized Valentine’s Day cards and candy to share with the class. I doubt anyone will deny treats that will give them the much needed energy boost to get through lecture.

Another plus to sharing with your class is making someone whom you may not know that well feel a little special.

If you want something a little more intimate you could always #TreatYoSelf. There’s nothing more personal than the moments we spend with ourselves.

Treat yourself to dessert or a movie. Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to get dressed up and splurge on an expensive dinner or other guilty pleasure. Be creative!

Also, if you have been wanting to get out more, whether just to have fun or to meet a significant other, there’s no better day than Valentine’s Day. Everyone who hasn’t found love will be looking for it, but don’t be desperate or naive.

There will probably be inconsiderate people looking to prey on those who are a little more vulnerable during this season. Just go out and be yourself. You’re not supposed to find love anyway; it finds you.

Keep in mind that when it comes down to it, Valentine’s Day is just another day. If you treat every day like it’s special — which they all are — then happiness will find its way into your life. Express your love towards yourself and loved ones as often as you get the chance. Don’t just wait for Feb. 14.

Cliché holiday a burden on couples

Emma Reeves – Printz Reporter

My boyfriend and I will be celebrating Valentine’s Day, but if I am honest, I find the tradition to be overrated. I see Valentine’s Day as a day that celebrates merchandise more than love and causes couples to become lazy in their relationships.

Think about it: Walmart is currently red, pink and drowning in over-priced, over-stuffed plush animals. Chocolate is at a premium, and florists are raking in orders for roses.

Advertisements flood us with the message that these cliché gifts must be given on this one arbitrary day. The holiday has become a marketing ploy, convincing people to pay billions of dollars as if that will mean true love.

It is as if this repetitive ideology drills into our minds a false concept that says to love must equate to something like an expensive, socially-prescribed event complete with dime-store souvenirs.

Now, this does not mean gifts are not appreciated. What it means is that there is no longer any romance in Valentine’s Day because there is no longer any creativity in the gifts.

As said, most of them come from the front aisle of Walmart and require no real thought to buy. What happened to the idea that the thought is worth more than the gift itself?

Moreover, why do we need one day to celebrate love instead of showing that we care all year? In a way, Valentine’s Day makes people think that romance only happens on special occasions.

We put so much emphasis on one day, but what does that imply about the next day? Is the magical exaggeration of feeling supposed to come suddenly and last only 24 hours so Walmart can clear out the red and bring in Easter eggs?

Couples become lazy, believing romance does not matter as much all the other days.

Finally, to the few people who do put thought into Valentine’s Day: why do we put so much pressure on this day? Valentine’s Day is meant to be fun, yet what should be personal instead becomes a Facebook contest to see who has the best significant other.

Love is intimate, private and different for everyone.

We have created a holiday that demands perfection from something that is subjective and therefore cannot be compared or measured, but we still compete to display perfection even if it is a false reality, leaving the few who do put thought into their gifts with the pressure to please their significant other and all his or her Facebook friends.

I am cynical, so please excuse my generalizations. To me, love is more abstract than flowers and more selfless than dinner and a movie. Love is putting another before yourself, so if for you that means a teddy bear and chocolate, go for it; celebrate your idea of love as you see fit.  As for me, I’ll be avoiding Walmart and Facebook like the plague.

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