Valentine's - Schmalentine's. A co-worker of mine once theorized that the date was a conspiracy conjured up by Hallmark, Godiva and 1-800 Flowers. Although I see his point, I'm so jaded that I'd even hate to give those corporations the credit. After all, the same theory could be applied to Easter.
Although, Easter has a history. Ask Google what happened and why we do the Voodoo that we do and almost all of the answers will lead to a guy named Jesus being resurrected. The bunnies and the egg hunt...well, nobody seems to have a sensible explanation for that except that it's a conspiracy conjured up by Hallmark, Godiva and Petland Discounts.
But Valentine's? I can't get a clear correlation between this Saint or Saints and the declaration of love. The more I analyze it, the more exasperated I get - like trying to explain love itself.
Valentine's Day, WTF? When I was single, you rubbed it in. When I got married, you became a joke. But I never had to buy into your commercialism...until now.
The four-year old came home with the "option" to hand out Valentine's day cards to all of his classmates. I passed that assignment over to Grammy thinking it would be the more volatile project. Eighteen cards signed in his Pre-K penmanship that resembles a squid mark in an earthquake - that's a breakdown guaranteed right there.
No thanks, I'll go with Big Brother's assignment. Read a Valentine's poetry, draw a Valentine's picture. How bad could that be, right?
I forgot Big Brother's a spaz.
For his picture, he wanted to draw a big heart and failed...miserably. The invested art lessons at SVA are going up in flames as he attempted to draw a simple heart and it came out looking like - well, it looked like an ass.
"No, no, no. You can't use that one." I said while I frantically erased it.
"Well, for one thing - the bottom of a heart shape is not flat. Just do it again."
I wondered if I was being a bit of a Tiger Mom: the Asian-Nazi of a mother. But I realized we're not playing piano here - do it right, damn-you! No ifs, ands or Butts.
He tried it again and stopped with half of a heart. The top half that looks like a butt. He started to get frustrated.
"Dude, you're making it harder for yourself. Just draw the letter C with a big hump and then counter it with a backwards C - like this," I showed him.
He was determined to draw it his own way. A curvy letter M, a line on the left veering right, a line on the right veering left, over and over again. He worked at a pace so slow, I thought it would be Christmas before we were done. Finally, when he finished, there was a drawing of a heart that resembled McDonald's golden arches.
By this time, I was quite done with his homework assignment.
"Okay," I said, "you want to hand that in?"
"No, I want my hearts to look like yours, mommy."
Sweet, yes, but as I mentioned earlier, I am too jaded for Valentine's activities. I didn't care if they were perfect, I just didn't want them to look like the rear view of J-Lo or the aerial view of Dolly Parton.
He finally got a heart drawn to his liking. And though I wouldn't have cared, in my judgement it passed as G rated.
"Now, let's color it in," he said.
"Sure, what color - black or yellow?"
He gave me a quizzical look.
"No, Mommy. Hearts are red."
"Oh yeah," I challenge my last stand against Valentine commercialism. "Says who?"
He rolled his eyes up like duh and answered, "CVS!"