By Natalie Bair
Valentine’s Day: The holiday renowned for forced cheesiness and impromptu romance. The day fills with couples bombarding each other with nothing but cliche boxes of arguably inedible chocolate (who hated the world enough to put a blob of orange goo in a perfectly good piece of chocolate?), giant teddy bears that could pay off a series of student loans, and grammatically incorrect Instagram posts flooding timelines with love-sick paragraphs and heart-eyed emojis.
However, when the day comes to an end and the 15th rolls along, the Valentine’s aftermath surfaces. Discounted candies and disgruntled relationships take their hold on the world.
Take a moment and picture all the happy, honeymoon phase couples who agreed to act as each other’s date for the big day – a day full of elaborate dinners, expensive bills, extensive small talk, and extravagant gifts. Fast forward to the following day. Who calls who? Where does one take the questionable relationship that found itself arranged for the sole purpose of meeting a social quota banning mid-February singleness? Options limited, questions infinite, post Valentine’s Day finds itself in an awkward, uncertain predicament.
For those who failed to live up to the expectations of St. Valentine’s, the days that ensue bring nothing but dread. Those 50 percent off boxes of chocolates can’t even begin to make up for the lack of romance, and the uncomfortable tension ferments like expired love. The malls overflow with disowned boyfriends, scavenging for the perfect make-up gift–an absolutely depressing image.
Chocolate hangover. After gorging oneself on every single piece of chocolate within reach (which seemed like a good idea at the time), the aftermath proves to be draining. Prepare for a day of laying in bed, reaching desperately for the wrappers of candy from yesterday, licking the last remnants of substance of sweetness from the paper and crying over yesterday’s mistakes. How did one get here, in the present state of calorie-crazed nothingness? That three course meal, followed by enough chocolate to fill Charlie’s factory, will, inevitably, pay its toll.
Society puts the day of the diapered baby on a pedestal, when, in actuality, it belongs right with its victims: sad, broke, full, and in a lump on the floor. Promising love, hyping up an idealistic image of romance, Valentine’s Day instead provides only emotional shambles and incurable awkwardness. Rather than being subservient to the media’s expectations and waiting a whole 364 days to make that special someone feel appreciated, take the time to show them in the little things, every day.