Friday, February 15, 2008
Blood red roses, their velvety petals falling open in a gentle cascade of fragrance…sparkles of confetti, littered about in glistening shapes of crimson, pink, and silver…smooth chocolates, filled with creamy insides that taste of exotic fruits and rich, deluxe confections…Little handmade cards, with curly handwriting inside inscribing x…o…x…o…
Imagine, for a moment, that these snapshots form a slideshow that float in and out of your head. For me, the force of the thought that identifies the source of these celebratory items hits me like a brick. Of course. Valentine’s Day has arrived.
At most any high school, James Logan being no exception, February 14th is not quite so elegant, nor quite so romantic. Rather, one can spot offensively bright balloons of gigantic heart-shaped proportions floating through the halls during passing periods, scraping the ceiling and ricocheting off more than one student’s head. Or, one can experience the constant interruption of candy-gram messengers, announcing to the entire class which student has a significant other that has spent the money to buy a card, a flower, a cookie, and a proclamation of their status as a couple.
It is not, however, a cause for annoyance. While I have never received a candy gram or carried an armful of balloons to all of my classes, I can feel the happiness bubbling from my fellow schoolmates as they brush by me in the halls, their arms laden with cheerful gifts. I may feel resentment or jealousy that I do not have that special status, being completely devoid of visible Valentine’s cheer myself, but the feelings are always washed over by the enjoyment that they seem to derive from their gifts. So many people are so happy and so loved that it becomes rather infectious, and I become one of those that can’t help but grin and awww at any sappy moment.
After all, it only comes by annually, right? Face it, one can only be loved like this once a year, once every 365 days (or 366, if it’s a leap year), once every sixty-thousand-odd hours…
And then suddenly, it’s over. Poof! Gone, just like that.
If you took a stroll down the hallways yesterday, you’d have noticed it too. Where is the pink wrapping paper, the heart-shaped lollipop, or the single flower that has begun to wilt from having been handled too many times that day? They seem to have been whisked away by one suck of a vacuum cleaner, replaced by events we know of all too well. Suddenly, the spats come about again, the blame, the cheating. Why has the love all gone?
Because the holiday’s gone too, that’s why, a voice sulks.
Take a moment to contemplate that statement. Is it really a feasible reason? Why should Valentine’s Day be the only day to demonstrate love for one another? Certainly, it’s official, designated, whatever you’d like to call it. But does the day really have to be official to deserve a little extra something? As the Day of Love flies past like Cupid’s arrow, try and remember what it’s like to bask in so much affection, whether it’s from your parents, your siblings, your friends, or your significant other. Then, the next day, surprise them. Reciprocate those feelings twice-fold. Then, perhaps, we’ll all come to realize that Valentine’s Day isn’t the only day to show our love for one another. Rather, it’s just the starting point for us to remember just how much we care for one another, and that we don’t just love them one day out of the year, but for all of it.