Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Great Valentine's Day Debate

McLovin, in his infinite wisdom, suggested that we write a pro/con debate about the merits of Valentine’s Day. He thought this was an excellent idea because apparently, he thinks Valentine’s Day is fine but Kate totally hates it and that amuses him. And since we’re practically professional debaters at this point (thank you very much, Pajama Jeans) we thought we’d do it.

Valentine’s Day sucks big, hot monkey balls. Discuss.
Lydia: It is a holiday where I get a present. Therefore, it does not suck.
Kate: A present of fattening chocolate bought at CVS at 5:50pm and delivered to you at 6:30pm, complimented by grocery store flowers that will be dead in seventeen minutes and the very last Valentine's Day card in the store. One that says something like, "I'm ape about you" and has a an oversized man whose hair has managed to migrate off his head and onto his shoulders. This is all very romantic.

Valentine’s Day is not about love, it’s about being forced to spend money.
Actually, it's about a Roman priest who was caught marrying Christian couples, which was a crime. The Emperor might have let him go, but the priest tried to convert him. Oops. They beat him with clubs and stoned him and when he still didn't die, he was beheaded. I'm pretty sure it's a cautionary tale that ends with: "...and the moral of the story is, don't buy the cow."
Lydia: I can't really respond to that.  As I am a bought cow.

Valentine’s Day is like Mother’s Day, New Year’s Eve and your birthday – always a disappointment...and if you want to go out, you have to book the babysitter yourself.
Lydia: Well, that part is certainly true. Because my husband, the incomparable yet curmudgeonly Cap’n Coupon apparently lacks the ability to book a babysitter. I don’t understand it. But as far as being a disappointment is concerned, I have a small piece of advice that makes Valentine’s Day a lot easier. Are you ready? Lower your expectations.
Kate: Lower then to the point of denying it even exists. No, no, I don't need flowers or candy. It's just Monday. Tell you what, I'll make mac-n-cheese, we'll grunt intelligibly at each other while flipping between Snooki and the 1977 World Series, and one of us will fall asleep in the living room. With any luck, we might even be able to ignore the day entirely. And use that babysitter money on a pair of shoes.

The worst part of Valentine’s Day is that you have to get him a present and it’s always something stupid like a power drill or a flat screen TV that isn’t even romantic at all.
Kate: No. The worst part is that when you go to raid the children's candy stash from their classmates, you discover that Mr. Romantic with the new drill ate the last mini Snickers bar. A word of advice, if you want to go for the romantic gift, get him custom made M&Ms that say "Suck It"
Lydia: Couldn't that be interpreted as a request?

You know what else sucks about Valentine’s Day? That your kids are all jacked up on candy and acting like demons.
Lydia: You got me there. That sucks donkey dong.
Kate: Problem solved. McLovin looked at February's calendar to see that Kate opted to work. the late shift. that night. The flip side is that he gets to spend Valentine's Day in his man cave with a beer and Charlie Sheen on TV. Which makes him the envy of every man in America.

Valentine’s Day is stupid because it’s represented by a large child in a diaper holding a bow and arrows.
Kate: I think this question made my point for me.
Lydia: No kidding. There’s nothing less sexy than a large child in a diaper playing with sharp objects. Especially during cold and flu season. Why not have the most romantic holiday of the year represented by saltpeter?

Valentine's Day is sweet. My children love getting the little cards from their friends.
Lydia: My kids love Valentine's Day because each little Phinneas and Ferb valentine is like a little present! And it's great practice for them to go about writing out all their Valentines for their friends.  And for their teachers and grandparents.  It's a nice way for them to remember and appreciate the folks they care about. 
Kate: Please. They could give a rat's patootie about the cards. If they're anything like Lefty, they're ripping the candy off the Spiderman or Dora greeting and making a snap decision about the kid based on the level of sugar deliciousness. "Emma gave me a WHOLE SNICKERS BAR! She's way better than that kid Clark. He just handed out those stupid heart candies. Mom! Do I hafta invite Clark to my birthday?" "Yes!" "Ugh. He's totally gonna give me pajamas or something..."

Valentine's Day is specifically designed to derail ALL of your New Year's Resolutions all at once.
Kate: Umm, even yesser. Actually, it more derails my *plans* to restart my New Year's Resolutions that were already derailed by that most nefarious of days -- the day after New Year.

Lydia: I don't want to sound all smug and Paltrow, but Valentine's candy isn't that hard to resist.  I think its mostly meh. My problem is the stuff that comes right on it's heels: Cadbury eggs and Girl Scout cookies. Now that stuff is my kryptonite. 

Valentine's Day is a conspiracy against men.
Lydia: I couldn't disagree more.  In my house, it's the Cap'n who always does a better job with Valentine's Day.  I never get it together and he's really hard to buy for and my gift for him is always something lame and last minute.  Which is pathetic because I like Valentine's Day. Also, I fail to see how its a conspiracy against men when its one of the few days of the year they can count on getting some.
Kate: You know when you send your sons to the bathroom, demanding that they go pee before you leave the house for the seven hour Extravaganza of Errands, and they stand in front of the potty concentrating really hard on peeing and they. just. can't. do. it? Fast forward twenty years. OK men, go out today and be THE MOST ROMANTIC MAN YOU'VE EVER BEEN IN THE HISTORY OF EVER. Yeah, that's not pressure. It's days like this they come home with scented oils and a book full of illustrations. I don't think so.

Valentine's Day is the one day when everyone gets to feel loved and be romantic.
Kate: I had a friend whose secret admirer decided to make himself known on Valentine's Day. By standing outside her apartment festooned with roses. Only roses. Nothing else. Including clothing. She taught self defense at the neighborhood Community Center. I like to think he's still plucking out the thorns she embedded into his ummm...festoons.
Lydia: I think we can all agree that your friend's stalker is an outlier.  I think the beauty of Valentine's Day is that you're accountable for telling the people you love how you feel.  And by accountable, I mean that people who can't even be bothered to try, to just say an extra "I love you" or write a card - are sort of "outed" as being jackholes.  I know people in relationships who feel unappreciated but can't quite put a finger on what's wrong.  Then Valentine's Day comes and their partner totally blows it off and they can say: "Oh. That's what wrong.  You're a douchebag who can't even be bothered to stop by CVS on your way home and pick me up a stupid box of Russel Stovers. Now I know."

Valentine’s Day brings with it the expectation of extra special relations.
Lydia: That’s pressure that none of us need, I totally agree. Especially for those of us who have fallen off of Jillian Michael's wagon again and are feeling flabby and finding it hard to look sexy after wiping poo off the floor. "Oh hi sweetie, let me go put on something more comfortable after I finish wiping the smears off the carpet, mmkay?" But those heightened expectations can also be a good thing. I hear.
Kate: They're kidding, right? By mid-February, I look as bad as I can possibly look all year -- all fattened up for winter, pale white and skin so dry that you could turn me into a pair of boots. Add in the freezer burned red blotches on my face and those teeny little bumps on the backs of my arms, and the chances of me putting on a little red cocktail dress, or --egad! -- even less? Consider moving Valentine's Day to August and I'm ALL IN. Until then, I'll be at work.


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