It is February 14th and I think that we all know exactly what that means. It is time to prop up the phoney diamond industry, the dead flower industry, and the Nation of Hallmark. It is a day that marketers separate the Loves and the Love Nots into different consumer groups with easily manipulated emotional buying patterns.
Forgive me. I’ve been around the block a few times. Of the 24 years that I’ve been building an interesting work history, a few of them were dedicated to selling advertising. When you embrace a life of selling something that doesn’t actually exist you begin to see other examples of it everywhere. Any Valentines Day bashing I may do isn’t a result of cynicism. It’s just that my BS Meter is calibrated so precisely that I am unable to endure levels of this magnitude silently.
But lets be honest (you should never start a sentence with a preposition, but I wanted to start a folksy, heart felt paragraph here in an enduring way). Valentines Day is what we make of it- when focused on the negative it is easy to want to wash your hands of the day. Luckily, we have a choice. We don’t have to let this holiday be dictated by commercialism. We can choose to focus on the love and caring and the excitement and the togetherness and let the miniature Teddy bears and crappy chocolate hearts sit on the shelves. Being a mindful vegan has helped me hone in on what is really important during the various holidays so I can bypass most of the crap for sale that gets in the way.
With almost exactly a month before Shannon and I celebrate our 20th Anniversary, there is enough actual love to be celebrated without having to buy in to the pink and chocolate hoopla. This year’s anniversary is exciting for both of us because for the last five years we’ve been having to count using our fingers to try and figure out which particular number we were celebrating that particular year. 16th, 18th, 17th, 19th… they are all so similar and non-distinct that it was hard to tell them apart without some basic Algebra and a calendar…. but not this year. A nice round 20 is easy to remember. A pair of decades stands out in the crowd.
So today most people are either receiving bouquets of roses in the office or shooting eye daggers at the people who are receiving bouquets of roses. In either case, I was only popping in for a quick post about the the holiday. I was going to mention the ironic steaks I saw for sale in heart shaped containers and wish everyone a lovely day. I even came up with a cute title for the post: Happy VEGANtines Day! When I was looking for a matching image I did a Google search of vegantines day and found an actual company! It is too late to join the consumerism for this year, but if you’d like to shower your vegan love with appropriate gifts, vegantines.org might be the place to go in 2014. If you’re into that kind of thing.
I hope you will excuse the short post. I have to go and kick off a month of pre-anniversary romanticism.