Monday, 11 February 2019

Bring it on

It seems people either love or hate Valentine's Day. Either you see it as a lot of commercial and sentimental hype or you seize the chance to be totally romantic and slushy and cherish your loved one.

Well, I'm firmly in the romantic and slushy camp. I enjoy being with Jenny and sharing our favourite everyday pleasures like chocolate, wine and books. It would be rather sad if one of us scoffed at the whole idea of Valentine's Day and wanted nothing to do with it.

Oddly enough, I can't recall ever getting a Valentine's card from anyone. Clearly I never prompted the sort of gooey-eyed veneration that would send a suitably gushing Valentine in my direction.

I did get a rather lovely rose once from a male admirer, but it didn't lead to anything romantic. I had to disappoint him as I'm not that way inclined. A shame, as he was rather gorgeous.

Other countries have their special Valentine's Day traditions, some of them not so popular. Japanese women are pushing back against giri choco, the tradition that they give chocolates to male colleagues on Valentine's Day. They object to this "forced giving" and abuse of power.

Apparently the Welsh don't bother with Valentine's Day but celebrate St Dwynwen, the Welsh patron saint of lovers, on January 25th. They give each other carved wooden spoons as a token of fondness.

I don't see what's so repugnant about Valentine's Day. Better a mass outbreak of affection than the sullen frostiness most people choose as their habitual public persona. You never know, someone might even kiss me (other than Jenny, that is).

Bring on the romantic slushiness. And bring on the chocolate.
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The High Court judge has just ruled against the flat-owners who took the Tate Modern to court on the grounds that the gallery's viewing platform was an invasion of their privacy. Mr Justice Mann said there was no case to answer either on privacy or nuisance grounds. It is unclear why he made this decision (which makes no sense to me at all).

26 comments:

Rummuser said...

Had I known earlier, I would have sent you a Valentine's day card for the experience. No, I have never sent one nor received one ever.

Bijoux said...

We could complain about every holiday being commercialized. I've always loved Valentine's Day. Here's to champagne, chocolates, flowers and love!

nick said...

Ramana: Perhaps people were bold enough to chat me up directly without needing the shy subterfuge of a Valentine's card?

Bijoux: Exactly. What holiday hasn't been exploited by big business? Or small business? That doesn't stop us enjoying it.

Ms Scarlet said...

Ack. I've had to give up sugary food so I'm sulking. Someone will have to give me diamonds instead.
Sx

nick said...

Ms Scarlet: You had to give up sugar? That's a shame. So chocolate will just be a distant memory?

Ms Scarlet said...

I can get away with a good dark chocolate, 70% +, after a meal.... but no more sugary snacks or cakes or biscuits. I have an inbuilt aversion therapy called tinnitus. I had a slice of cake the other day, mid afternoon, and it sent the tinnitus mental. Cheese has a similar effect. On the plus side, salt, alcohol, and caffeine don't seem to aggravate it. Nor do diamonds.
Sx

Wisewebwoman said...

I wonder would all these Hallmark days be honoured without the hoopla?

I'm a firm believer in gifting outside of these prescribed days. When I see something someone would like, cards for no reason, etc. A plant. An anonymous dropping off of a pound of good coffee.

I like doing these things when the mood strikes me and not because the calendar and Hallmark do.

XO
WWW

nick said...

Ms Scarlet: I didn't know tinnitus could be aggravated by certain foods. Good to know alcohol and caffeine are safe. Likewise diamonds.

www: Must admit I don't usually offer gifts for no special reason. There's usually a reason of some kind, like going to a house-warming or thanking someone for keeping an eye on the house while we're away.

I presume you recognise birthdays, even though they must be the biggest commercial card market after Christmas cards?

helen devries said...

We don't do birthdays, anniversaries or Valentine's Day....but we do celebrate whenwe feel like it.

nick said...

Helen: Fair enough. Spontaneous celebrations are always fun!

tammy j said...

dang it Nicholas! NOW I want a luscious hot fudge sundae!
all that talk about delicious chocolate. and usually I'm not a chocolate fan.
when I was little in school I remember we had to decorate a shoe box. a slot was cut into the top of it. (even the boys had to participate!) I think they secretly liked it myself. anyway. after it was decorated you went around to everybody's desk and mailed them a personal valentine. it was so much fun! especially if you liked a special person VERY much! I think it's lovely that you and Jenny have made it a special day.

nick said...

Tammy: That game with the shoe box sounds like fun. But my schools were far too conventional to do anything like that!

Now I'm hankering after a hot fudge sundae (very American - I think you can only get them at McDonalds).

Linda Sand said...

Back when Tammy and I were young the shoebox thing was in every school, I think. My Mom tells about my older brother saying he was going to put all his valentines in a particular girl's box. She always wondered if he did. By the time I was that age that would not have been allowed; we were required to put a valentine in each box even if we disliked the recipient. I always wondered what the purpose of that was; were they trying to teach us that everyone deserved love? If so, it didn't work. :)

CheerfulMonk said...

We recognize birthdays and Christmas, but don't do much to celebrate them. We do pay attention to when the seasons change and they have Halloween, then Christmas, then Valentine's Day, then Easter candy. Andy has a sweet tooth, so it's fun. There's a long stretch between Easter and Halloween, so Halloween is our favorite -- in the store it happens right after the back-to-school sales.

I love our everyday life and celebrate that most of the time. We have parallel play (our own projects) and enjoy the time we spend together shopping and other little things. "Transported by joy" happens a lot.

nick said...

Linda: Trying to force people to love other people is never going to work! I've never heard of the Valentine shoe box anywhere in the UK - it must be a solely US thing.

Jean: We have the same gap here between Easter and Halloween. We just have to fill it with wine, strawberries and ice cream!

Joared said...

Mostly I remember Valentine’s Day as an elementary school activity of exchanging cards. Don't recall anything special associated with this as an adult. I like spontaneous expressions that genuinely occur for no good reason when the mood strikes, not because of some designated day.

nick said...

Joared: Well, there are plenty of designated days we do celebrate - like birthdays, wedding days, Easter, Halloween, Christmas etc. I wouldn't want to ditch all those celebrations just because they're designated.

Secret Agent Woman said...

I'm indifferent about Valentine's day. I don't hate it, but we don't make a point of celebrating eat. We do romantic things fairly regularly, though, so that may be why I'm not drawn to one day assigned to that.

Joared said...

I’ve often celebrated, or had others doing the same, many of those occasions on days other than the designated day/date due to a variety of circumstances that occurred. The point for me centers on the people involved and not necessarily a specific day/date if works out better and is agreeable with all — sometimes from necessity, other times by choice.

nick said...

Agent: Oh yes, we do lots of romantic things as well, but I just think Valentine's Day is fun - and a good excuse for being extra affectionate.

Joared: I agree - in the end it's about the people and not the date. I think the important thing is to ignore all the commercial hype and just do what you feel like doing.

Chuck McConvey said...

While my wife was alive I enjoyed it - our tradition was to make no reservation and go find a nice place for dinner comw what may. Texas was better than California- LOL - but Lynn did not like BBQ as much as me. We usually ended up at a place similar to Benihana and had a great time. And I sent flowers and bought chocolated.

nick said...

Chuck: I had to look up Benihana - it wasn't around when I lived in London. And it hasn't reached Northern Ireland yet. Picking a restaurant at random on the day is a nice idea.

kylie said...

I once read that Valentines day (and birthdays, anniversaries etc) matter a lot if we feel unappreciated or unloved in our relationships but when the relationship is good, the celebrations no longer matter to us. I think it's true.
I would like to celebrate with someone special but I no longer want massive amounts of money spent on me, especially not for useless things like fluffy toys

nick said...

Kylie: Not true in our case, as we both feel very much appreciated and loved. But we also like to have a special day where we appreciate each other even more! We don't spend lots of money though - some chocolates and wine and that's about it. And we already have a fluffy miniature koala!

Jenny Woolf said...

Oh I do agree that some people can be miserable about anything. Why not celebrate Valentines? I suppose it is tough on those who never get a card, though. so perhaps it should be a private matter.

nick said...

Jenny: Indeed, some people are fully-qualified miseries! But I don't think it's especially tough on those who don't get Valentine's. I've never had a Valentine and it never occurred to me I was missing out. Some things come your way, some things don't - that's life.