I hear a lot of folks today talking about how Valentine’s Day is sadly out-of-date. Some folks claim that it’s an outmoded notion, that a fellow who gives a woman a bouquet of flowers and some candy shouldn’t expect to get his hat boxed and his kiwis cuddled. Other folks complain about how Walmart and Hallmark have damn near merchandised this holiday to death. Overpriced restuarants and wildly expensive bouquets have done old St. Valentino in.
I love St. Valentines Day.
I still remember the first Valentines Day I gave to my wife Belinda.
I’m talking about 1995 – back when I wore size 34 jeans.
Way back then Belinda wasn’t my wife – she was my girlfriend, but I loved her just as much. I scuttled into her house just as we were coming home from an evening out. I hastily paid off the babysitter and threw her out the door, making a dent in the front lawn where she landed.
Then – while Belinda was upstairs getting changed I hastily filled the living room with flowers, candy, jewelry, chilled wine, stuffed toys, balloons and great big stick-on Valentines decals in the windows.
Yes sir – I set myself a bar that I could never hope to successfully vault over – yet every year I keep on trying.
Fortunately, so does she.
♥ ♥ ♥
Then there was 2006.
We’d both lost work time over November and December, and my business back then especially suffered over February. For those who knew me back then I was a full-time palm and Tarot reader at Little Mysteries on Barrington Street – and let me tell you there just isn’t a lot of folks who brave the winter to get downtown for a palm or Tarot reading.
So we decided to keep it small. I started out by giving Belinda a bag of ginger chocolate last night. Then this morning I awoke to find that she’d snuck down to my office while I was snoozing and left a stuffed monkey valentines card and some chocolates on my writing desk. I returned the favor by handing her a card and a DVD of the movie Tom Jones.
Then Belinda made me a big batch of heart-shaped pancakes for breakfast.
Point to her.
Then we both had to head our separate ways. I needed to go to the dentist, and she needed to go to work. We walked out, happy as pigs eating pigs.
The dentist visit was uneventful. They had to bring out a jack hammer to clean my teeth, (I’ve never had that done at a dentist before, and they made a follow-up visit for March. Then, when I was finished and went to the desk to pay my bill the receptionist said, “Happy Valentine’s Day. Your dental visit is on your wife.”
Right out of the freaking ballpark.
Heh. I did my best to make up for that by picking up a bouquet of bright orange roses, (which she loves), and a heaping helping of orange chicken and won tons, (which she also loves), but the fact is my wife has definitely out-valentined me that year. I bow down to her sense of timing. All hail Belinda, the queen of Valentines Day.
♥ ♥ ♥
I was going to tell you all about LAST year’s Valentine’s Day – but I think it’d be easier if I just sent you to the blog entry – which describes in MUCH more articulate fashion than I can manage tonight.
So – instead let me tell you about Valentine’s Day at the Vernon house THIS year.
We’re on one heck of a budget this year – on account of Belinda is going to college all year long and is consequently making a LOT less money. She is taking a college course in Medical Administration and is scoring top marks and working her butt off doing it and I am SO damn proud of all of the work she is putting into it.
So we’re doing Valentine’s Day on a budget.
But that still doesn’t mean it isn’t special.
Earlier this week I bought her a fancy Tim Horton’s heart-shaped donut – just because I knew she was having a hard week at school. The other day I picked her up some fancy chocolates. Then Thursday night I brought her home a fancy Starbucks heart-shaped cookie.
See fellas – this is how you REALLY want to do Valentines Day. Never mind farting around for one mere night of the year. Stretch it out so that it lasts all week long. Never mind trying to be expensive. Go for thoughtful. Show your lady that you are thinking about them.
Listen to Poppa.
Valentines Night we are going to do fondue. We’ve got some fancy cheese – including some dark old Guinness-infused Stilton that is absolutely wonderful if you dig funky old cheese. Belinda calls it my hockey puck cheese.
We’ve also got some toffee cheese which tastes like supper and dessert all wrapped into one neat little package. We’ve got some olive bread and some olives and pickled onions and gherkins and some fruit and I’m bringing home a fancy dessert – in case the toffee cheese isn’t sweet enough.
Belinda has a box of wine and I have a six-pack of good dark ale – the chewy kind that lumps down a fellow’s throat.
Um-gowa, baby. That’s good living.
See – Valentines Day does NOT have to be an expensive proposition. Just take a moment to pull life over to the curb and play a little soft music and talk a little of love.
Some folks might call that corny.
Let me tell you – people live off of corn. They eat it and they survive and there are a lot worse things in this world to go believing in than pure honest-to-god down-home corn.
♥ ♥ ♥
Funny thing about entertainment – but sooner or later there is ALWAYS a commercial.
If you enjoyed this blog entry why not pick up a copy of my brand-new collection of six twisted love stories – BAD VALENTINES 2?
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AND REMEMBER – be sure to check out the two dozen OTHER authors taking part in the BLOODY VALENTINE’S DAY 2014 BLOG HOP!
Yours in storytelling,