Thursday, February 14, 2013

Some thoughts about Valentine's Day

The first thing wrong with Valentine's Day is that it falls at the wrong time of the year when a portion of the world is deep in the throes of winter woes. It would be much better if the holiday fell during late Spring or early summer, for example. Here's a thought: why not switch Valentine's Day, with let's say...Mother's Day, for example? Mothers being blessed with extra-understanding qualities wouldn't mind observing their special day in winter. Right moms?

This holiday aimed at romantics came about a long time ago when the Bishop of Spoleto was martyred on February 14, AD 271. Traditionally, Valentine's Day was celebrated as a lover's feast, hence the reason for restaurants offering special gastronomical banquets. Profit has nothing to do with it, of course.

According to, statistically, 110 million Valentine's roses are sold and delivered in a three-day period surrounding February 14th, the vast majority of which are red. Of those 110 million, 73% are purchased by men and a mere 27% are purchased by women. It's intereseting, at least to me that red roses are the number one color choice. Roses do come in other tints including yellow, pink, white and shade mixes. Somehow, the color red is viewed as a passionate hue, implying pasionate undertones, which is probably the reason that men are attracted to this particular tint and stick to giving red roses. Then again, so is black... But I digress.

In as far as the selection of flowers, we look to Debretts once again, "the" guide to social etiquette, for its take blooms.

Be prepared to spend, and don't economise. Never buy bunches from the supermarket or garage.
Garage? People sell flowers from garages? I thought that was the place one stored trash cans that hold dead rose bushes. Ask me about it. I know.

•Don't overlook the importance of the card that accompanies a delivered bouquet - it is an important part of the present.
Really, if you take the time to select a special assortment of flowers - and money - it seems logical that you at the very least, take credit for it. No? I mean, "guess who?" really leaves it open to speculation.

•Make sure the bouquet suits the occasion and the style of the recipient (e.g. classic or contemporary).
In other words, don't give your special friend a Venus Fly Trap for example, in the way of a card and gift. If someone wants to get rid of insects, they can call an exterminator. Really.

•Avoid white flowers for celebratory bunches (they are often associated with funerals and death).

•Mixed bouquets can look cheap if they aren't substantial and well-styled; instead, consider buying a bunch of all one type of bloom or going for just a single colour.
Personally, I believe in using flowers growing in or around one's garden. When one thinks about it, dandelions fit the bill perfectly and they are virtually...everywhere, plus they are free for the asking. Or for that touch of greenery, add some three (four leaf are hard to find) leafed clover.

•Utilize greenery - it can bulk up the bouquet and complement the flowers - and pick seasonal blooms, which will be in better condition.
Perhaps consider adding some dill or chives to make a bouquet look fuller. They serve a double purpose and can also enhance a home-made pot of soup that can be used as an entree for the Valentine's Day supper. Two gifts for the price of one! Can't go wrong!

That Debrett's has the right answers to suit all occasions. Of course they will be consulted for advice on social dilemmas. But I digress...again.

Thinking back, my first encounter with romance was a somewhat painful experience. We were both nine years old and after our school day ended, we enjoyed sitting on my front stairs discussing life as seen through our eyes. One day for no apparent reason and without any prior warning, he leaned over and kissed me square on the cheek. To say I was aghast was an understatement and reacted instantaneously by making a fist and thrusting it square into his stomach. He groaned while doubling over in pain. We stared at each other for what seemed like forever but was probably no more than a few seconds, as tears welled up in his eyes and spilled on to his cheeks. Clutching his stomach, he took off like a bat out of hell and never looked back. Ever. We never spoke again and he refused all overtures of friendship.

Came accross this quotation, which sums up love and Valentine's Day:
"We are all a little weird and life's a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love. (Unknown Author)

Aint't that the truth.

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