V-day gets stuffed … kind of
By biconews On 15 Feb, 2000 At 05:00 AM | Categorized As Archives | With 0 Comments

By Monica Hesse

I pride myself on my lack of sentimentality. I am annoyed by the frivolity connotated by the word “girl.” I would rather be fair than likeable, firm than lackadaisical, and my judgement is not swayed by either fuzzy kittens or gurgling babies. And I have always resolutely proclaimed my hatred of Valentine’s Day.

In junior high, I saw the holiday as a sign of weakness, a day composed of unnecessary declarations of love and sappy poems scrawled on pink and red hearts. I was terrified of those petrified sugar candy hearts with their unintelligible sayings and a half-life rivaled only by plutonium.

Even in high school, where I had a steady boyfriend for three years, we both became crusaders against Valentine’s Day. It was an entirely consumer-created holiday, invented by an overly capitalistic society and perpetuated by materialistic women with low self-esteem. We (because

we were always a “we”) had neither the time nor the money to waste on such a silly conspiratorial plot, obviously contrived by the CEOs of Hallmark and Russell Stovers.

In college, it became painfully obvious to my friends and me that Valentine’s Day was a deliberate attempt by all happy couples of the world to mock our single and therefore insignificant stature. We bemoaned this fact over cartons of Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream, and consoled ourselves by reasoning that all of that chocolate would have made us fat, anyway.

I made early plans to be off of campus over the holiday weekend, saying that I refused to let myself succumb to feelings of inferiority simply because I wasn’t receiving love poems and boxes of candy like all of my attached hallmates. I hid out in the dorm room of a friend at Penn State, listened to angry girl music and claimed that we would refuse any man who would be soppy enough to buy us flowers anyway.

But herein lies a problem. I am no longer disgusted by happy couples prancing together on Merion Green. I am afraid that the sinking feeling in my, stomach, formerly attributed to revulsion might actually be a feeling of jealousy? I can feel my sarcastic and bitter exterior melting away to reveal the type of girl who cries over long distance phone commercials and movies starring Meg Ryan. I think I might want some flowers. I think if someone gave me a teddy bear today, I might actually exclaim “How sweet!” instead of allowing myself to dissolve into the feeling of annoyed incredulity that I usually feel when I look at stuffed animals.

And, of course, if I hadn’t spent the last 364 days being completely cynical and mocking, somebody might have given me flowers, or chocolate, or at the very least, a pink and red

Hallmark card.

So this is it. This is the first and only time I will ever make this declaration. If confronted with it later, I will deny all knowledge of this column, and perhaps pretend that I’ve never heard of St. Valentine. But Monica Hesse Does Not Hate Valentine’s Day. She is, in fact, somewhat of a romantic who would not utterly oppose to being swept off her feet. And if you see her staring angrily at you as you snuggle with your significant other, she is probably not plotting your demise, or thinking of the frivolous nature of relationships. She is probably just a little bitter, a little nostalgic … and maybe just wants a piece of your chocolate.

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