February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day

Warning: I have a very strong opinion about the following post, and you will most likely be offended. Read at your own risk, and don't post angry comments after you read it, because quite frankly, I told you so.

Unless you live in a cave, you were probably aware of the fact that yesterday was Valentine's Day. Valentine's Day seems to take on a whole new meaning when you've got a kid at daycare or school. There's some stupid unspoken rule of kids handing out valentines, which I totally don't get. And then there's me - I'm *that* mom. Why? Because I seriously refuse to spend my time writing up a bunch of cards for a bunch of kids that I don't know. And who, at age 2, actually cares if they get a stupid piece of paper on Valentine's Day with their name on it? Well, that is, unless that stupid piece of paper came with candy. Like PK yesterday. Didn't give a hootskie about the 2 paper valentines left in her cubby. But then there was one valentine which had a box of Smarties attached to it. When she realized that she had been left a chocolaty treat, all hell broke loose. Naturally, she wanted to consume her "candy" on her way home, even though she had a perfectly good granola bar to eat (which she generally really likes to eat and calls her "little snack"). So thanks, Ben's mom. Thanks a lot.

The funny thing is that it's mostly considered bad form to not hand out valentines, and I don't get why. Let's think about why writing up valentines should be banned:

1. Don't give marketers the satisfaction!
This whole thing is just a giant cash grab. Who doesn't like making money off of tens of thousands of parents buying themed paper to give on behalf of their kids which says "Happy Valentine's Day" or some other dorky variation of it?

2. It's time-consuming
First, you are the one who will be writing up the cards for the most part...until your kids are old enough to do it, and do they really want to be doing this later? Wouldn't you rather spend your free time doing something more fun. Like spend time with your kids? Hmmm...

3. What if?
What if you forget some kid? How will they feel? How will your kid feel if they're forgotten?

4. Wastefulness
Let's face it. This stuff will eventually end up in the trash, even if it spends 1 or 2 years sitting inside a box somewhere. It doesn't add value. A few years from now, you won't even remember who Max or Raymond or Arianna are, let alone where you knew them from. Plus, if it's going to end up in the trash anyway, you as a parent handing out valentines should feel guilty that you are just creating demand for something that is wasteful, pollutes, and doesn't really add value in the end.

All joking and harshness aside, I really do think that there's undue pressure on parents/kids to hand out valentines, and I really don't get why. There's enough societal crap that we have to worry about with regards to fitting in. (And who wants to fully fit in anyway?) We already have to worry about giving gifts to teachers at Christmas and at the end of the year, and buying decent gifts for kiddies at birthday parties, and goodness knows what other crap will come along, and then you have one more annoying thing to worry about with valentines. Seriously, I am too busy and too tired to worry about this crap. I'm barely scraping by most days in trying to balance daycare, work, parenting, and marriage and not sucking at any of these, without having to worry about writing up valentines. So seriously, society, lay off, and let me carry on with my juggling act, thank you.

PS: I did warn you. :)

1 comment:

Mr. Shiny and New said...

I mostly agree with you. I've always hated Valentine's day.

As a kid I often didn't get as many as the more popular kids. This should have been a signal, because I didn't have a girlfriend until after I finished high-school, which was a major bummer every Feb 14th. Then once I had a girlfriend there was lots of pressure to be extra romantic on that day. Let's just say that it hasn't always been a success.

Now there is the Valentine's day ritual for the kids. I have to admit that my daughter likes getting and giving the valentines because she likes little colourful pieces of paper. But Mrs. S&N doesn't like buying the valentines and neither of us wants to make them from scratch. I think it could a good opportunity for arts and crafts, once the kids are older.

Sadly this holiday doesn't show any signs of going anywhere.