Courtesy of jmplawyers.comCoffee: how much sugar do you have to put in before it’s not bitter anymore?Valentine’s Day is a holiday for liars, for con-artists, for actors. Arguably the most superficial holiday of the year, Valentine’s Day serves as a reminder that the majority of present day relationships are based on anything but genuine affection.

Now, one may argue that this day is set aside so that an individual has the opportunity to do something special for his or her partner, whether it be a romantic dinner or a thoughtful gift. Yet we must call into question the validity of such a course of action.Why are the individual’s actions being emphasized on a single day? If their feelings are true, shouldn’t every day be full of the same consideration and not restricted to the 24 hours termed Valentine’s Day?

Valentine’s Day is simply a commercial holiday that was made up by the hallmark industry. If you love someone, why does there need to be one day of the year where you shower your sweetheart with presents? Valentine’s Day is a holiday on steroids, especially if you’re single. It is exploited by marketing departments. It’s become hugely commercialized, with many people having over-inflated expectations. If there is anything you should learn, whether you’re single or in a relationship, it’s that expectations and assumptions are termites to a relationship.

Those who think that the people who aren’t hypnotized by the  commercialism that is Valentine’s Day are bitter and skeptical, say that Valentine’s Day is simply a day of exchanging presents, flowers, candy, cards, and affectionate love punctuated with an adoring approach of romantic infatuation. Why, out of all the days in the year, is it necessary to single out a whole day of doubles? So those Valentine’s Day advocates tell me, how much did you buy your love for this year? Every store is a circus full of stuffed animals and cliché hearts. What is important at the end of the day is that the warm fuzzy feeling that you think you’re giving your potential love interest or significant other is bought with cold hard money.

“Have you ever been in love? Horrible isn’t it? It makes you so vulnerable. It opens your chest and it opens up your heart and it means that someone can get inside you and mess you up. You build up all these defenses, you build up a whole suit of armor, so that nothing can hurt you, then one stupid person, no different from any other stupid person, wanders into your stupid life…You give them a piece of you. They didn’t ask for it. They did something dumb one day, like kiss you or smile at you, and then your life isn’t your own anymore. Love takes hostages. It gets inside you. It eats you out and leaves you crying in the darkness, so simple a phrase like ‘maybe we should be just friends’ turns into a glass splinter working its way into your heart. It hurts. Not just in the imagination. Not just in the mind. It’s a soul-hurt, a real gets-inside-you-and-rips-you- apart pain. I hate love.” –  Neil Gaiman (author).
In the same way, I hate Valentine’s Day — don’t buy a time bomb if you don’t want it to blow up the building.

Shah is a member of the class of 2014

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