Valentine's Day stinks and here's why
Valentine's Day is a pointless gimmick of a holiday designed to sell cards, reinforce gender stereotypes, give a boost to restaurants in the post-holiday slump, encourage you to buy meaningless trinkets for whoever's currently occupying your bed, and/or make you feel bad about your life for being alone on a random day in February.
In short, it stinks.
Who are the people benefitting from this turd of a day? Businesses. Retailers. Corporations. CAPITALISM. Whatever entity it is that manufactures and sells cheap paper hearts and tacky plastic Cupids for window displays. Fucking bourgeois malarkey. And it's not even a real holiday since you don't even get a day off work.
I SEE THROUGH YOU, MANUFACTURED DAY OF LOVE.
You know who loses? Everybody else.
Are you single? Then you can't go out in public without having everyone else's loving feelings painfully shoved in your face. (And, unsurprisingly, the couples get really mad when you shove them in the face. Not fair, double shoving standard.) You get the privilege of endure countless think pieces about why being single is just the best. (It's not.) And all that sweet, sweet advertising completely ignores you and your anti-social, broken-hearted needs. You are Enemy Number One every February 14, a sign of failure, neuroticism, and everything that the smug marrieds are against. You're the one your extended family tries to fix up on blind dates because, "How are you ever going to start a family if you don't let a nice boy take you out to dinner every once in a while?" For you, Valentine's Day is merely a societal haranguing letting you know that you have failed at life.
In a couple? Then prepare to endure an overpriced meal while the duo sitting next to you gets engaged and your now-miserable partner gives you The Look. You know, the one that says, "Honey, we've been dating for eight years now and your sister just got engaged to that deadbeat after only six months and every single one of my college friends is having her second baby right now and if I really meant anything to you, you would have spent the GDP of a small dictatorship on a blood diamond to prove how much you love me because love is really about buying me things and not about, say, quality time, companionship, and compatibility. By the way, if you fall asleep before I do tonight, I'm going to smother you with a pillow so maybe plan on never sleeping again."
Married? Well, your life is terrible anyway and I'm sorry.
Maybe my overwhelming loathing of Valentine's goes back to elementary school, when my classmates and I were forced to address and exchange meaningless paper notes covered in heart-related puns. No one spelled my name right—ever. Because of that horrific childhood trauma, I am always surprised when anyone gets it right nowadays.
Or maybe it was that awkward, shifty boy in grade nine who creepily gave me a rose on V-Day, even though he spent most of that week making out with a friend of mine. What were his intentions? No clue. I certainly didn't want his mouth—or hands or feet and definitely not his roses—anywhere near me. I think he also got my makeoutee friend a rose, too. That was very confusing, weird 12-year-old dude.
Or maybe it was that even awkwarder drama guy in high school, the one who made everything into a massive ego-stroking production of stereotypes and drama, the one who got his mother to deliver a dozen roses and a box of chocolates to a girl during our grade 12 history class. It wasn't cute; it was downright horrifying.
Or maybe I simply hate being told that I have to buy stuff to prove my affections.
And that's not even acknowledging that the gifts and expectations hyped by marketers are distressingly gendered. Men: you can only prove you love your woman if you buy her overpriced garbage. Women: we'll stop calling you gold-digging whores just for the day because we need the menfolk to shower you with flowers and chocolates and shiny jewellery. LBGT individuals: we don't know how to market to you so we'll just go back to telling hetero men they need to open their wallets and hetero women that they are special princesses.
It's not that love is stupid. It's that Valentine's Day is stupid. Buying stuff because the romance-industrial complex tells you to is monumentally stupid. I can truly think of no upside to the day, apart from the crossed-fingers hope that most couples are too busy the next morning fucking or fighting to take up all the seats at your favourite brunch place.
Happy V-Day, y'all!