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Ease off on the Valentine's Day hate - Metro US

Ease off on the Valentine’s Day hate

Apparently, New York-based relationship expert Jay Cataldo is on a mission to single-handedly end Valentine’s Day.

“This wretched day of massive expectation and zero appreciation needs to be destroyed,” he states in the press release announcing his plot to destroy this “disgraceful holiday.”

Cataldo doesn’t explain exactly how he plans to off Valentine’s Day — take Cupid out with his own bow and arrow? Lobby for a ban on scratchy lace? — but his cynicism about what is increasingly referred to as the “Hallmark Holiday” is becoming all too common.

Sure, I understand the “I’m single and thanks for reminding me how loveless my life is” resentment and the “God, please don’t let me fail the test of proving I love you because I bought you lousy carnations instead of roses” pressure.

And yes, I agree that it’s a bit of a goofy, made-up holiday designed mostly to keep the consumer wheel turning. I’ve received hundreds of emails from companies reaching to come up with a Valentine’s Day angle to pitch their product.

How about a free strawberry recipe iPhone app courtesy of the California Strawberry Commission? Hey, strawberries are red.

I’m not saying you have to fall for some idealized, unrealistic notion that your love can be neatly expressed once a year with a heart-shaped box of candy or a strawberry recipe iPhone app.

But “gathering a large amount of sympathetic malcontents together and declaring February 14 as a Day of Hate,” as one anti-VD internet campaign encouraged people to do, is a bit of a cop-out.

This year, instead of spending all that energy resenting the unrealistic romantic ideals shoved down your throats by the greeting card and candy companies, use the day to stop and appreciate the love in your life.

The other day my brother — who is single by the way — said that if they cancel Valentine’s Day, they might as well cancel Christmas.

And, as with Christmas, you can choose whether or not to get caught up in the commercialism.

For me, Christmas is less about shopping and more an opportunity to spend time with friends and loved ones — to eat, drink and be merry.

Similarly, Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to stop, take a good look at your honey, preferably across a candlelit table adorned with some good food and a nice bottle of wine, and say, “Hey, you’re really special to me and I’m glad you’re in my life.”

And, if you’re single, take the same opportunity to get together with friends, take a good look at them, preferably across a candlelit table adorned with some good food and a nice bottle of wine, and tell them, “Hey, you’re really special to me and I’m glad you’re in my life.”

Happy Valentine’s Day.

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