VD sucks

I hate Valentine’s Day.

“But JT, why is the expression of love such a bad thing?”

It’s not, which is why, if you love somebody, you should do it the other 364 days out of the year without needing some arbitrary day that does more for the economy than it does for love.

What’s more, there are a lot of single, lonely people in the world.  If you don’t think a day devoted to all the people who are lucky in love to flounce it about publicly does not affect them then your environmental awareness sucks.  By making one day all about overtly gushing over the person you love, it’s like eating a sandwich in front of somebody who’s starving and screaming about how good it tastes.

“But JT, aren’t you public about your love life?”

Yes, I am.  I write about love on my blog because I’m still learning about it and my blog is how I organize my thoughts.  If you don’t like the content, it’s easy to get away from.  However, Valentine’s Day (hereafter referred to as VD) is not easy to get away from and produces no new learning, just the idea that love is validated only by spending money.

Here’s a quip from Michaelyn’s blog last night:

Get ready to vomit from the cute. While I was getting my hair cut, an audience member asked JT how much it would cost to have him get a mohawk as well. He said $500 thinking it wouldn’t happen. Well…It happened.

He raised $500 for SOMA on the spot, and now we match! This morning, with both of us being sick, we laid around in our pjs all day until I had to take him to the airport. We had cold pizza and oreos, and were all around lazy sloths. It was a great day. I’m including this as a new experience because I’ve never had oreos for breakfast. Sometimes you need a break from the busy world; I’m glad I can have days with JT where we can just hold hands, eat oreos and enjoy each other’s company. We don’t get that a lot because we’re far away, but when we do I love every minute.

If we love someone, we should live every day to make VD superfluous.  Days like the above shouldn’t be special, they should be the norm.

So Michaelyn and I are not celebrating VD.  It’s another day full of affection and work.  Same as always.

Love is great, but VD has nothing to do with it.

You guys are wonderful.
PERSONAL: Happy birthday, Hitch.
PERSONAL: Sorry to disappoint you, Julian.
Update and pics from #AACon15. MST3K cast members were at my talk.
About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.

  • mcbender

    Well, if you’re talking about venereal disease… actually, I’d rather talk about that sort of VD than Valentine’s Day. I wouldn’t want to celebrate it, though…

  • embertine

    Oh, but I looove Valentine’s Day. My last relationship was abusive, and VD was one of my lovely ex’s weapons in the arsenal of “make ember feel crap about herself and isolate her from her family”.

    This is the one day in the year I feel really lucky to be single. Plus, half-price chocolate and wine tomorrow! YAY!!!

  • ladydreamgirl

    WHAT!? She’d never had oreos for breakfast? What is going on at our universities these days. Thankfully you were able to introduce her to this necessary and quintessentially traditional collage student breakfast.

  • http://jubydoo.wordpress.com/ Juby!
  • Rory

    I take your point, and as a singleton (and birthday boy to boot), I’ll admit that the onslaught of ballads on the radio, and cards, and the general inescapeability of the day are a bit grating. And of course, there’s no reason why love and affection should be codified into a single day of obligation when they should be lived and practiced every day. I can well understand why some label it a Hallmark holiday and despise it.

    But, on the other hand, the fact that we should be thankful every day for the good things in our life every day doesn’t make me enjoy Thanksgiving less or cause me to decry it as a ‘Purdue holiday.’ And if it bums me out a bit to be single, as Ember pointed out, there’s nothing not to like about cheap chocolates, even if they are heart-shaped. So yeah, today will be a day like any other for me, but to those who plan to celebrate, have at it.

  • ash

    ” By making one day all about overtly gushing over the person you love, it’s like eating a sandwich in front of somebody who’s starving and screaming about how good it tastes.”

    thank you thank you thank you!

  • Dunc

    I was once travelling through San Francisco on my own… I’d been travelling for a couple of days without sleep due to messed up flights, and I’d kinda lost track of the date. Also, it was my first time in the US, and I simply had no idea that you guys decorate for Valentines the way we do for Christmas. So I go out, find a restaurant, “Table for one, please”… I’m sitting there at my table for one (in the corner, right next to the restrooms) looking around thinking “what the hell?” for a good ten minutes before it finally sank in to my sleep-deprived brain what day it was. Not the most fun evening I’ve ever had… ;)

    The swordfish was pretty good though.

  • Mark

    I always remind people to use this day to remember the Christian Martyrs.

  • Crow

    I’m confused, do you apply this argument to all holidays? Mother’s Day? Fourth of July? Black History Month?

    I mean, isn’t commemorating Black History just like screaming at all the other persecuted groups of the world, saying “We’ve made some progress, sucks to be you!”? Why should we pick one month for that when there’s 11 other months we should be recognizing civil liberties too?

    Your logic seems flawed is all.

    • Tara

      IDK about JT but I do apply the same logic to all other things. The only things I really am all get up and go go to celebrate are birthdays, anniversaries, and family reunions (I live far enough away that I am not always able to see my family as often as I would like). Most other holidays I celebrate out of a sense of obligation that if I don’t, then I’ll be seen as a bad _____ (fill in the blank).

      I think that we don’t need a special month or day to celebrate anything; that is just pointing out how “different” they are when they are not. Here, the case is, that we are all Americans, if that makes sense. Not African Americans, not Jewish Americans, Asian Americans, Gay Americans, White Americans, Hispanic Americans, etc. We are just all Americans (same thing can be applied to people all over the world).

  • michaeld

    Damn straight Venereal diseases do suck!

  • Forbidden Snowflake

    Happy February Fools’ Day!

  • https://twitter.com/#!/Erulora Erulóra Maikalambe

    If it makes you feel any better, I totally forgot about it until I was handed a card this morning and realized I didn’t have one to give in exchange.

  • Anonymous

    I had a falling out with my parents several years ago. For the first couple years after that mothers day and fathers day were quite painful. Does that mean that people shouldn’t celebrate their love for their parents in this way just because some people don’t have those kinds of relationships? Not at all.

    There are a lot of single happy people out there too. I think being one alone in a bar on this day is bound to get me laid (having tits helps too.) if it helps me (or anyone) get laid then I’m all for it.

    As for VD, proper and consistent condom use can greatly reduce the risks. And most STIs are highly treatable these days.

  • Anonymous

    Oh yeah. I forgot to mention I texted everyone I love today. Good thing I have an unlimited plan. My mom wasn’t on the list, my boyfriend want on the list, but how can I feel bad for myself when I have such a list. I’m glad I had a reminder to tell those people dear to me, that I wouldn’t tell everyday.

  • neatospiderplant

    “if you love somebody, you should do it the other 364 days out of the year”

    I do agree with this statement, but sadly, I think some people do need a bit of a push to do the Valentine-type gestures. I’m not saying that all the people in this category are necessarily inconsiderate or unromantic. I think, especially when you’ve been with someone a long time, it can be easy to forget to set aside time for your relationship. Life can get in the way.

    “What’s more, there are a lot of single, lonely people in the world. If you don’t think a day devoted to all the people who are lucky in love to flounce it about publicly does not affect them then your environmental awareness sucks.”

    Trust me. I get it. I’m married, but my husband is only home about 60 days of the year. With those numbers, you can imagine I spend most VDs alone. It’s definitely hard seeing all the Facebook posts with my other married friends talking about where they are going for their romantic dinners or what movies they are going to see when I’m going to be spending the evening alone. It definitely sucks, but VD is not the only time that it’s hard to be (pseudo-)single. Personally, I feel the absolute loneliest at weddings when I have to go alone. So even if to me, VD is just another sad reminder that I’m alone, I’m glad my friends are happy. I do wish I were able to participate the way they do, but I’m not going to be so selfish to say that if I have to be miserable, no one else should get to have their fun.

  • im

    Why don’t we matchmake and set our single friends up on dates on Valentine’s Day?

    • http://grimalkinblog.wordpress.com Grimalkin

      Because that implies that there’s a problem with being single, and setting people up on dates just because they ‘should’ have one for an entirely arbitrary day cheapens the concept of love.

      • im

        … Please don’t knee-jerk that response. Those of us who dislike being single regardless of anything society says about it do NOT take so kindly to how this attitude is used in every given situation.

        • http://grimalkinblog.wordpress.com Grimalkin

          The attitude that being single is an okay thing? You might not like it, but when it comes to other people’s social lives (and it does when you’re talking about matchmaking others), you have to take into account that those people might be incredibly offended if you act like they’ll be happier if you ‘matchmake’ them just because the day of the year says you should.

          And if they’re the type of person that is single because they’re waiting for something meaningful? Wanting to set them up because it’s the wrong day of the year to not be in a relationship is something that I can’t help but find shallow.

    • Aliasalpha

      I don’t think I could handle being set up on a date (or indeed going on a date at all but thats beside the point), it’d feel like way too much pressure

  • http://www.speakingupanyway.wordpress.com Allie

    Did you know St. Valentine is the patron saint of plague and epilepsy? Nor did I, but now you know. Happy Plague and Epilepsy Day!

  • Mriana

    Yes, venereal disease would suck. lol Seriously though, I really never thought about Valentine’s Day sucking. I just buy myself some chocolate and enjoy the day as I would any other day, esp when I’m not in a relationship.

  • Aliasalpha

    The day sucks but its a great day for playing metal & blues songs, excellent catharsis knowing you’re not alone feeling shit.

    For example, Deep Purple (MkIII)’s: Mistreated

  • http://a-million-gods.blogspot.com/ Avicenna

    I actually disagree that Valentine’s Day sucks. I quite like it, it’s a silly day where you are encouraged to be silly and romantic. You don’t need that excuse on other days but sometimes it’s nice to be part of the crowd.

    Look, days like Christmas, Valentine’s Day and all the other days are just days where people do something special. The meaning of christmas to some people is Jesus and all that jazz, but I was a Hindu. Christmas was about sitting with your family and laughing as you try to make “white people food”, complain about it being too bland and then spicing up the recipes (My turkey used to be cooked in a tandoori and we had curry rather than gravy). You can still enjoy something even if it doesn’t mean the same thing to you.

    Yes, it sucks to be single on Valentine’s Day. But you know what? If you are single and you think it’s a problem then every event where you are in contact with people in relationships is irritating. A simple dinner with my cousins often turns into me looking awkwardly at the ceiling while they discuss “married people things”. Being an odd numbered wheel sucks sometimes. Being the odd wheel around a public display of affection sucks. The only difference between Valentine’s Day and any other day is the quantity of people who are doing the whole PDA thing. It’s the same at Christmas or Easter or any day where people get together in large groups with their significant others and you are on your own around a lot of booze.

    And I had to spend Christmas this year by myself locked in a room with medical textbooks. Let’s just say that calling it a “depressing holiday” is an understatement. Imagine knowing that you HAVE to sit and study while every person you know is out eating, drinking and having fun? Imagine seeing all your friends get married, settle down and have a kid while you don’t even have the time to go out and get a beer. It all sucks when you aren’t getting it but you know what? It’s my choice to trade in my 20s in exchange for a medical degree and it’s my choice to get my degree in India. So I can complain but I cannot change the reality of the situation.

    I have been single for 2 years and 8 months now. In that time period I have had a single proper fling and that was less about a feasible relationship and more about “high school reunion with someone who I fancied and vice versa who lives on the other side of the globe and who I hadn’t seen since I was 15″. And it frankly sucks, but what makes it suck isn’t the fact that all the people in relationships are having fun or have a day where they rub it in my face. It sucks because I have an issue with it. I mean that’s like saying that I shouldn’t hit on women around my friends who are in monogamous relationships because they cannot. I am pretty much doomed to a bare minimum of another 3 years of being single due to a variety of reasons of the socio-economic variety.

    And what would insult me more is if people treated me like my feelings were so delicate and fragile that I would be insulted if I were to see people having fun on Valentine’s Day. No more so than my feelings being insulted for seeing people having fun on Christmas or Easter or St. Patrick’s Day or pretty much any other day of the year. And you know what? One day I will not be stuck here, one day I will be back home and one day I will have a social life. And at that point, I wouldn’t want to have to pussy foot around someone else worrying about their feelings with regards to my relationship.

    So don’t worry about us single people. We don’t have someone to date, it doesn’t mean we are big giant babies. Most of us can handle Valentine’s Day just fine!

    • Aliasalpha

      Oooh tandoori turkey sounds good!

  • http://a-million-gods.blogspot.com/ Avicenna

    Correction! to my previous post!

    A quick check on my schedule points out that I wasn’t alone on Christmas but at a friend’s wedding. Ignore that bit. I was on study leave at the time and the days kind of congeal together when you are revising for exams.


  • Kat In AZ

    Well, my husband & I have been together for 8.5 years, and married for almost 7. Last night I worked til 7:30pm, he worked til 9:15pm. I made dinner, a lemon-something Chicken helper meal, we ate, I watched a DVD with my 20-yr old son and Hubby played video games for a couple hours. It was like most other nights. We have never been traditional about anything,

    We don’t have any winter gift-giving holiday but when we have a decent tax return, we go all out on giving each other gifts. We don’t celebrate V-Day either, because we love each other every day and do silly things often to show each other as well.