Whether you’re single or in a committed relationship, these days I think most people agree that Valentine’s Day is a bit of a toss.
No-one knows the exact origins of Valentine’s Day. There are suggestions it began in ancient Rome with the feast of Lupercalia, which occurred annually in mid-February. This feast involved naked drunken men sacrificing goats and whacking single women with the hides. After the whacking, the men randomly drew the names of single women from a jar and were ‘coupled’ with them.
Move forward to the 3rd century AD. Legend states that marriage had been outlawed by the Roman Emperor as it was not good for war — married men preferred to stay home with their wives rather than go out and fight. A Christian priest by the name of Valentine said ‘fuck the institution!’ and married people in secret. On February 14th he was executed.
According to most sources, Valentine’s Day is a culmination of these two events — the Pagan ritualistic fertility feast, and the martyrdom of Saint Valentine.
Over time Valentine’s Day has become a day of men showing women their affections in the form of chocolate and roses, rather than slapping them with dead animals. Retail outlets go all out with their advertising in an attempt to guilt couples into spending their hard earned cash on crap they don’t need, in attempt to show each other what they should already know. Even the aisles of your local supermarket become adorned with heart shaped junk, chocolates and roses.
There’s no escape.
I say let’s go back to the Pagan parties; perhaps a modern adaptation without the nudity, dead animals, or pulling names out of jars. All we’re left with is people and alcohol.
Valentine’s Day becomes a wine with friends… perfect.