Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Valentine's Day - Never heard of it

My thought for this blog post started with my asking Linda Sherman when Valentine's day was and she responded that it meant I had not finalized my plans for my wife for Valentine's day. Now I am pretty sure I had not heard of Valentine's day before I landed one hot summer day in Dulles airport and started my life in the US 11 year ago.When I was working in the hospitality business the restaurant owners' eyes twinkled when ever "Valentine's Day" was mentioned and it was the busiest time in the year and that was my introduction to Valentine's day.

Don't draw any conclusions here but growing up in a middle-class family in India - the concept of flowers was only for marriages or other occasions. Being married I do play the dutiful Valentine savvy husband and father by taking flowers home. One time My Mom was here on Valentine's day and she was happy to get flowers at least once in her life from her son. I love the idea and I think Valentine's day keeps the economy going. In a way its exciting to have ad day about love.

According to Wikipedia "The U.S. Greeting Card Association estimates that approximately one billion valentines are sent each year worldwide, making the day the second largest card-sending holiday of the year behind Christmas. The association estimates that women purchase approximately 85 percent of all valentines.[3]

I am curious do people really spend 1.5 times their monthly salary towards a gift for their beloved every Valentine's day ( heard that on a radio station). What do the Single's do ? As I am student of the Twitter university and I asked the question what Valentine's Day meant to people during my daily evening class .

Responses from my Twitter University Faculty:

Karylan : It means showing your loved one how much they mean to you.

Jestutripup please enjoy being married with kids. that's a psyche swim. celebrate loving every human every day where ever we are on earth.

Jonforeman Valentine's day means I better buy a gift for my girlfriend and arrange something special or else I'll be in the doghouse. :-)

conniereece For Valentine's Mom always writes original poems for my sister & me; she bakes a heart-shaped red velvet cake. Very loving family.

FreshPeel Valentines Day is outrageously high priced flowers, crowded restaurants and many other ways to celebrate besides the later.

BlondeByDesign re: What does Valentines mean 2 U.. It's a day of fun, giving & receiving of love. Not nec. just about couples. About LOVE

kfarwell - Valentines Day has always felt very sweet to me - flowers, candy, cards, giggling. Nothing overly deep and meaningful.

edwardharran V:Day: A History: Greek mythology to Christian tradition to Hallmark commercialism

Digidave a forced date

Now what happens to Singles ? In a previous Blog post on Singelringen I took the help of

Linda Sherman who is Singelringen agent for North America to understand the concept. So I asked her "Do people give Singelringen for Valentine's Day & to whom and she said " YES! To themselves, single friends/relatives"

She sent me the Singelringen's take on Valentine's Day:

Singles have attractive options on February 14th.

They can join in the sixth annual celebration of IQD, International Quirky Alone Day. Founder Sasha Cagen has posted a list of 10 recommended activities for IQD at QuirkyAlone.net. One of them is: “Get yourself a lovely aqua Singelringen as a visible reminder that you're complete whether you're in a relationship or not.”

I will be giving the ladies in my life flowers and will wait and watch on Twitter to see what everyone else is giving to get some ideas. I did hear someone say they are getting a WiFi booster ;) But I may be wrong. If you care to comment on what Valentine's Day means to you please do and I will be eagerly awaiting your opinion.



LYF108 said...

1.5 times monthly salary?? No way! I thought engagement rings were supposedly 2 months salary, so that's even more insane.

As for me, I love Valentine's Day, I always do things for my friends (at least cards) and when I have a bf get lots of cute stuff. I am the ultimate consumer, retailers love schmucks like me.

hotfish said...

Valentine's Day does not really mean anything to me. My husband brings home chocolates for me when he comes home from work every so often. He also buys me my favourite drinks and other tidits just to let me know he was thinking of me through out the year. When he used to travel alot for work, he would send flowers for no reason at all other than to tell me he missed me. With two children in school now, Valentine's Day means I have to run to Wal-Mart to buy little Valentines cards for them to give out to their classmates. :)

Andre said...
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Andre said...

This is my first Valentine's Day as a husband so I'm going to try to make it as special as possible. Now that doesn't necessarily mean I'm going to go bankrupt - I'm a firm believer in "it's the thought that counts" and so does she. Which makes it even better to give her something nice :)

It's all about that Quality Time for me!

Mis-Match said...

1.5 times your monthly salary is ridiculous. I prefer to spend Valentine's day doing something together but there aren't any gifts required. This year we're getting ourselves a joint gift.

The whole flowers and boxed chocolates thing seems really passe.

Vidyut Luther said...

One of the female programmers i work with said she's getting RAM for her computer from her husband, and that means a lot cuz it means he's been listening to her. It's definitely not 1.5 salary, but it does fall into the 'thought that counts' bucket.

Maybe it's also time for us to reconsider flowers as the only way to show romance. People used to get flowers, make dinner, or go out on a fancy date.. I'd personally be happy with the over priced MacBook Air, it'd still be cheaper than the engagement ring :).

Unknown said...
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Anonymous said...

Unromantic sounds romantic to me.... So, this is my first Valentines day that I have someone who I can spend it with, rather than doing a fun Girls night again. Despite that, I'm celebrating it as a day of "self love". And doing something others may call unromantic. I'm making sure that before February 14th, I have balanced my checkbook and created a schedule where I can spend time to manage my finances once a month. I'm celebrating by taking care of myself. And, it's not selfish; it's self-loving. Happy Valentines Day. (Of course, I'm also going to do something fun with a new beau!!)

elysa222 said...

I'm generally not a fan of any of the Hallmark so called "holidays". (mothers day, fathers day, secretaries day, yadda yadda... Basically any day that you don't get the day off from work). Phony Sentiments Day, AKA "Valentines Day" reminds me of elementary school when you had to give valentines to everyone in your class - even the kids that were jerks. I didn't like you all year and now you are my best friend? I *heart* you!!! Gimme some of those stinkin' pink and mint green heart candies and I will be your valentine (for a day at least).

Then as an adult, you got the clueless boyfriends that buy the half dead red roses from the supermarket with the babies breath wrapped in plastic cones with the price sticker still on it and the Russell Stover chocolates to boot. Puh-leeze - save yourself the 10 bucks and make me a funny handwritten note or a nice dinner or something. Unless you want to buy me a huge rock that I can wear even after you are long gone. That's OK with me.

By the way, my grandparents hated eachother and their anniversary was on valentines day just so my grandfather would not forget it. They could remind themselves how miserable they were every year on the same day. Celebrate the luv...

Anonymous said...

i dont think i have to spend my 1.5 times monthly salary...to express my love...n if i had to spend so much then i would rather prefer to dump him:)

we at http://blog.giftex.in blog on various gifting strategies....check out our valentines blog for more information...


Anonymous said...

I have to agree that 1.5 times your monthly salary is an insane amount to spend on a holiday that was no doubt created to keep people shopping in the absense of a religious holiday between Christmas and Easter! My boyfriend I had a good laugh this year as we decided instead of ignoring the holiday all together we would buy a new computer which we needed anyway. When we made our purchaes we decided to pay cash on line as our credit cards are maxed from Chrismtas and it turns out they were giving away a free box of gourmet chocolates! Since we can send them to anyone we decided to send it to his Mom, because we haven't yet told her we have to store the TV we bought in her basement until we move in the our new apartment next month :) Have Valentine's Mom!