The Avengers Season 5, Episode 1 "From Venus with Love"
The title of this post is the nickname that I have been giving to all Valentine's Day related merchandise (see below).
Sometime between Christmas and New Year's Eve,
Target started lining up all of their Valentine's Day merchandise.
(FYI, St. Patrick's Day merch is also out now too.)
pink vomit at Ikea on New Year's Day
These red/pink things can be likened to "pink vomit," a sort of ugly, (abhorred) kitsch of a mess, that ironically makes of me think of Pepto-Bismol because of its color. I realize that not all "pink vomit" is necessarily "pink," but I rather call it "pink vomit" because "red vomit" sounds like a horror fest in the back of someone's car, as if it's a problem beyond alcohol poisoning. There is just so much crappy, poorly designed pink vomit out there in stores. I remember seeing a giant red lips-shaped pillow hanging on a string and thinking, "Who's the poor sap who's going to receive this and have to pretend that he/she loves it?"
Truthfully, I'm not entirely sure if I like or loathe Valentine's Day; I'd say that I'm ambivalent towards it. To me, Valentine's Day isn't a real holiday - it's more of a commercialized excuse for us to buy overly sentimental stuff and perhaps indulge yourself and your loved one(s) with pro-diabetic sweets (of which I am entirely guilty of).
Valentine vomit in I Hate Valentine's Day (2009)
anti-Valentine's Day comradery in I Hate Valentine's Day (2009)
I miss those days when I was in elementary school and all Valentine's Day meant was pretty much playing You've Got Mail with your own white paper bag decorated with red and pink hearts, shapes, and things, and passing out candy Scotch-taped on to the back of cute kiddie Valentine's Day cards like a little mail carrier.
cute kiddie Muppets Valentine's Day card from my co-pilot
Valentine's Day was like Halloween except with a totally different color scheme and without the pressure to dress up - plus there was no need to walk from door to door for candy because you'd be passing out candy in the classroom. Valentine's Day cards were like cute little corny trading cards. You can compare them with your friends and say things like, "Which one did you get?" and "Ohhh, I like that one!" Juvenile, I know, but they're nice childhood memories for my sentimental heart.
Then when it came to middle school and high school, Valentine's Day was the day when you'd see how many of your friends shelled out money for candy grams just so the people who passed them out could announce that you've received a candy gram or two, which gives you about ten seconds of attention from your class.
It's not like I have never been romanced in my life before, because I have, but Valentine's Day is plain annoying. About two years ago, I used to be like this lady:
Genevieve, played by Nia Vardalos, passing out V-Day goodies
to local strangers in I Hate Valentine's Day (2009)
Back then, I decided to embrace the dreaded Pink Vomit day because in my opinion and from past experiences, it's easier to face something and accept it rather than ignore it as if it didn't exist. I baked cupcakes, I passed out things, I did the whole shebang (oh god, I think some people thought I really loved Valentine's Day when I actually wasn't enamored with it - I just didn't want to feel like shit, guys... or have the people I'm surrounded by feel like shit either). The sentiment behind these actions was that even if someone is not romantically attached to anyone, that doesn't mean that person is any less worthy to receive attention from a friend or co-worker on such a stupid commercialized faux-holiday.
Valentine's Day could be a double-edged sword depending on how you see it. On one hand, it supposedly promotes the idea of "love" and encourages people to express that love; on the other hand, it could be a day of hell as described by the character Genevieve in I Hate Valentine's Day (2009):
"It's just a day of pressure, isn't it? I mean, even if you're in a relationship, which I'm not, it's just a day that makes you feel inadequate. Am I doing enough for this person? Did I get a big enough gift? Do I even know this person?"
In response to this quote, I've been there before, with another girlfriend actually when both our boyfriends didn't say Happy Valentine's Day. We brooded and had a nice night of drinking. The way I see it, for people who are in relationships, as long as you make your significant other feel like a somebody rather than an anybody or a nobody, you're good. The idea is to make that person feel special because feeling special (different from anyone else that you have been with before aka an exception), wanted, and maybe needed is the incentive that drives someone to want to stay with you.
pretty images from Paramore's "The Only Exception"
(I am definitely in love with her fiery hair!)
This father-daughter talk about dating etiquette during the "olden days" sums things up:
Sally Field as Gidget (Season 1, Episode 12 "Chivalry Isn't Dead")
Dad: [I]n the olden days, the thought of dating was the challenge, the uncertainty. We couldn't take a girl for granted. We had to woo her, pursue her - be considerate, charming."Gidget: And if you weren't?Dad: She went out with someone who was.
So my plans for this year's Valentine's Day? I have no clue. Maybe I'll head over to the ONE Archives that day? shrug. I just know that no matter how annoying Valentine's Day ads and merchandise are, you have the ability to control your own attitude and how you act so make your outlook on this commercialized holiday a good one. By all means, make yourself some cookies if you want to. I might do that actually.
Or if you're really into Valentine's Day, you can draw some inspiration from the Smurfs:
Smurfs Season 1, Episode 9 "Romeo and Smurfette"
Oh yeah. Don't do this. Really. Don't. Do. This:
from I Hate Valentine's Day (2009)
Oh god, RUN NOWW!