The Basement Files

Love is an every day thing, not just one day a year


Well, it is once again the Feast of Saint Valentine, or “Valentine’s Day” for they laymen out there.

A day where we, the humble denizens of the country, take time to celebrate the patron saint of “getting it on” by bribing our girlfriends with gifts of flowers and chocolate.

OK, so I don’t know if that’s entirely true. But I do know that if you forget the flowers and chocolate, you can forget about sleeping indoors for about a week.
Yes, I’m bitter, but no more so than usual. This so-called holiday always irritates me, and I’m not alone.

One thing that really rubs me wrong is the constant public displays of affection that ramp up during the weeks prior to Feb. 14. You’re in love? Great, go home. Nobody wants to watch two people make out at a food court. Or really anywhere. Remember that Super Bowl ad? And I hate to break it to you, but nobody cares, and nobody likes a show off. It’s nothing we haven’t seen before on primetime TV, so just stop.

If I were “jealous,” like I know some of you “PDA’ers” are going to accuse me of being, I would point out that more that 50 percent of marriages in this country end in divorce. So you’re probably not as “in love” as you think you are. But I’m just bitter, so I’ll just tell you what I would say if I was jealous.

Now that I’ve lost about 50 percent of you, I’ll point out the next thing that bugs me about this day. The commercials. Every single one has some sort of message that breaks down to nothing but “buy her stuff, get love back.” My brain hurts when I see stuff like this. Let’s be honest here, it’s bribery. Is that what this society has become? “I want her to like me, so I’m going to bribe her with goodies.”

No wonder the divorce rate is so high. We have no idea what real love is. And we have no idea how to treat one another. Which brings me to my next point. The day itself.

I don’t like it. I’m sorry, but I don’t. The day has turned into an excuse for couples to fight because one of them either forgot what day it was, or any of hundreds of other reasons (both legitimate and illegitimate,) when the focus shouldn’t be on the day at all. Seriously, if Valentine’s Day is the only day of the year you get flowers, then that man has failed.

Yeah, most of us guys are awful, but there are still a few of us left that would rather surprise that special lady in our life at work, just because it’s a Wednesday, with a huge bouquet of flowers, or maybe just a message on their voicemail, letting them know that they are the only person in the world you ever want to spend your time with. You know, being a real man.

If it’s only a one day thing, you failed, plain and simple, because it’s not. Love is an everyday thing, and because we as a society seem to forget that is what irritates me about this day. And you thought I was just a jerk.

Chris Hamble is a freelance writer and humor columnist serving newspapers in Minnesota and Wisconsin, and is a lifelong Stillwater resident.