The history of Valentine’s Day is one that’s complex, obscure and riddled with fanciful legends. The origin of 14th February’s festivities supposedly come from the ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia, a fertility celebration, and was later rebranded by Pope Gelasius I as a Christian feast day around 496 to be known as St. Valentine’s Day. Bit cheeky of the Catholic lads I feel but that’s another story for another time.
(This could be a load of factually incorrect rubbish as my research only went as far clicking the first result on Google after a quick search but you know what, I trust infoplease.com – they seem like good eggs.)
Whatever the origins, now in 2017 the 14th February is less about religion and myths and more about: 1. brands flogging tat at us and 2. yer da getting to do his yearly Facebook status about how “it’s a Hallmark Holiday” and is “just a ploy for businesses to extort even more money out of us.”
Whether you’re single, loved up or involved in something that can only be classed on Facebook as “It’s Complicated” you need to get your strategy for the big day ready.
You’ve just got over spending Christmas alone and now you’ve got to deal with this bullshit so soon after dealing with annoying Aunties asking if you’re courting yet or if you’ve ‘met anyone special?’ Grim.
It’s not all doom and gloom though. You don’t have to shave your legs, pretend to like cuddly toys as a gift and you can come home from work on a week night and not have to worry about getting dressed up to go out to the only generic chain restaurant you could get a table at and make your way through a set menu and go home to a-bit-too-full sex.
However, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- Keep a dignified silence Look, we all enjoy a funny self depreciating tweet now and again but let’s not go overboard. No one needs to see a million memes about how pizza is the real bae . And that picture of Ralph Wiggum from The Simpsons? Leave it for the other 3000 people to post. It’s also a good time to keep quiet if you know about a boy’s indiscretions. Maybe some girl has posted so many pictures of her presents that her Snapchat story looks like the Generation Game conveyor belt and perhaps the boy who bought them her is always sliding in your DMs. Today is not the day to type that ‘If only she knew what her man was up to in my inbox’ subtweet. Don’t be a dick. Remember the Girl Code and if you do want to give her a heads up, wait a few days. If for no other reason, you just look like a bitter bitch.
- Like your friend’s pictures Ah okay, she’s being a bit of insufferable smug cow but come on, you remember the other Valentine’s Days she used to spend arguing with Brian the Dickhead, don’t you? She’s finally happy and you should enjoy that. Blowing out someone else’s candles doesn’t make yours shine any brighter and all that.
- Don’t stalk your exes. You shouldn’t do this any day of the year to be honest but we all have blips, don’t we? Today is certainly not the day to stumble on to the Facebook page of the lad who broke your heart. Nostalgia is a dirty little liar who lets you look at horrible memories through rose tinted glasses and let you kid yourself that you were happy. You weren’t. He’s a rat. Stay off his social media and do yourself a massive favour.
- Don’t send yourself flowers. You are not Cher on Clueless. Buy yourself some if you want but don’t send them to the office from a ‘Secret admirer’. No one believe it for one second and you’re better than that.
- Don’t go out with someone for the sake of it. It’s only a Tuesday night for God’s sake. Don’t finally succumb to Roger from accounts advances out of fear of being alone on Valentine’s Day. Spending the night on your bill, plucking your chin hairs and drinking too much wine, is a far better option.
In a Relationship
- Show off your gifts If you get a load of amazing presents, or even just a single rose that means the world to you, then go ahead, upload it to social media. It’s boss to see people made up and happy and if anyone disagrees, they’re bitter and nasty. Show off and enjoy the likes. However, whatever you do, please do not upload whatever ‘cute’ little verse your partner wrote in the card; revealing their horrific pet name for you. There are limits to how much people can stomach.
- Get engaged Look, I’m so sorry if you said ‘Yes, I will’ on Valentine’s Day but please, don’t propose to your partner on 14th February. You don’t want to get less likes on your engagement ring than someone’s picture of a teddy from Clinton’s Cards, do you? Although, that said, you can always just do what you want because at the end of the day it’s more important to be happy for the rest of your life rather than worrying about what other people think. However, whatever you do, do NOT get married on Valentine’s Day. Fair enough you may always want to remember your anniversary easily but we’ve just got through January; we don’t need to have to be using a day’s annual leave and forking out for a hotel room and wedding present when we’ve only just got some money again. Be a decent human being and have it in the summer when we can all have a bev in the sun – think of the smokers at least.
- Don’t expect the best meal of your life in a restaurant Swerve a set menu at a chain restaurant. It’s crammed, the staff don’t care (why should they, they’re not getting any extra wages after all?) and do you really want to get dressed up after a day of work and on a school night. Do yourself a favour and get a curry delivered to your couch – true romance.
- Don’t patronise your single friends. Just don’t. Don’t send them a card or offer to go out with them only to leave early to get home to your fella. Either go all in or not.
Fittingly, the term ‘It’s Complicated’ is broad and hard to define, some would even say ‘It’s complicated’ to explain. Perhaps you’re getting laid by the same person regularly but you’re nowhere near meeting each other parents and going Facebook official. Maybe you’re having a little extra marital affair as you got proposed to on Valentine’s Day and the love just ain’t there anymore. Whatever the situation, the main thing to remember is it’s just another day in February.
- Treat yourself. Love yourself first and fuck anything that doesn’t make you happy off. Buy your fave wine, or whatever makes you feel pampered and remind yourself you don’t need anyone else to make you content but yourself.
- Don’t expect a situation to change just because it’s Valentine’s Day. Life isn’t some mediocre Rom Com starring Katherine Heigl and Gerrard Butler. If you’re being messed about someone, Valentine’s Day isn’t going to suddenly make everything magically better. Maybe they’ll get you a big present but it’s possibly just for show. Don’t excuse someone’s shitty behaviour for months just because they spent a few quid on you in Clinton’s Cards.
- Give someone false hope Maybe you’re the one messing someone around and you’re possibly going to be breaking hearts. While it may just be another day, maybe wait a couple of days to let him down gently rather than tell him it’s not working out hours after he’s come round to yours with half the flowers from Fishlocks.
Whatever your situation, the best way to spend Valentine’s Day is always with a bottle of prosecco; whether that’s with your other half, yourself or your girlfriends.
Happy Valentines Day…