Some thoughts on Valentines Day

Today is the day that so many love, and so many loathe. Its Valentine’s Day, a day where florists, restaurants and the good folk at Hallmark, rub their little hands in glee.

But do any of us really know what we are celebrating/hating?

Quite the sad tale actually. Get yourself comfy. Perhaps a soothing cup of tea?

It was back in the 5th Century that a romantic Saint called Valentinus, who thumbed his nose at authorities and continued to perform marriage ceremonies for those who were forbidden to wed. Eventually, the law caught up with our wistful Saint, who was consequently imprisoned. It was there that he fell in love with the daughter of his jailer. Before Valentinus was put to death, he handed her a love note, signed From Your Valentine.

Then THWACK! Off with his head.

Harsh.

Later, literary greats such as Chaucer and Shakespeare got in on the loved up wordy action, and wrote plays, poetry and sonnets featuring stories of the heart. And in 1590, Edmund Spencer penned those famous words…

 She bath’d with roses red, and violets blew,

And all the sweetest flowres, that in the forrest grew

 Which is roughly now translated to

Roses are red

Violets are blue

I hate this tattoo

That I got – of you

Which brings me to my point. When did romance die?

Recently, a friend and I were sitting at a café, when her phone beeped. It was a text from a young man, who had obviously been given the wrong phone number by some young lady, with whom he had spent some quality time with in the toilets at a nightclub the previous evening.

The phone beeped again, and this time we were treated to a photo of his genitals, which appeared to be quite pleased with itself.

WHAT WOULD VALENTINUS THINK? I started to worry. Is this the new thing? Taking photos of your bits and sending them out into the world, like an unfettered hose, spraying out into cyberspace, ending up who knows where? Is this the new romance? I needed to watch a Hugh Grant movie later that night, to restore my faith in romance.

But then I remembered his dalliance with Devine Brown in 1995, and retuned to my state of despair.

When you read the papers, it seems that everyday some celebrities’ marriage has fallen apart. The shortest Hollywood Marriage was the union between Rudolf Valentino and Jean Acker, which lasted 6 hours before Ms. Acker had a change of mind, and locked him our of their honeymoon suite. Game over, before it had even begun.

And at the other end of the love-longevity spectrum, Anne Buydens and Kirk Douglass are coming up to their 64th Wedding Anniversary in May. Mr. Douglass has said in the past, “I think I’m more romantic than ever. A woman knows the man she wants to marry and a man knows the woman he doesn’t want to be without.”

 Smooth work, Kirk. Smooth work.

In our house, you are considered romantic if you shut the toilet door. I have since discovered that romance takes effort. If you stack the dishwasher, and take out the bin, I just might just jump your bones.

After all, it was George Coote who taught us “No woman has ever shot her husband while he was doing the dishes.”

Do you consider yourself a romantic?

What makes you swoon?