Hallmark Holiday

 With Valentine’s day rolling around, it’s hard to ignore the plethora of hearts in every store. The dollar section of Target is filled with little gifts that you could give.  However almost none of the items we associate with the day stem from any origin story. The Christian feast day honoring Saint Valentine doesn’t require Ghirardelli or Lindor chocolate to celebrate. 

Few holidays have not been commercialized for financial gain. Companies are known to use any opportunity to increase revenue and this includes turning days that used to not be big celebrations, into massive spending times. The idea that you should spend in proportion to your love is what leads to people spending tons of money on their significant other. But material goods, and their financial value, don’t really express how much you love someone. 

The push by corporations around Valentine’s day is what has led to the relation between flowers, chocolates, heart items and so many other things. But these are not what Valentine’s day should be about.

Receiving gifts is the lowest ranking love language. Quality time, words of affirmation and physical touch rank far above it. So why has our society fixated so much on the gift giving aspect of Valentine’s day? If the day is focused on expressions of love, why is the focal point of the day something that many people don’t even care about. 

This year, we should all try to not succumb to the capitalist nature of Valentine’s day. Don’t feed into what corporations want. Do a puzzle with your loved ones, hike Old Rag, create a memory that is more meaningful than any gift you could get.