What does Death and Fertility have in common?
If you guessed Valentine’s Day, you are correct!
All around the United States (As far as I know), people celebrate love with flowers or chocolates, but did you know the dark history of its origin? If you didn’t know, Valentine’s Day had a bit of a rough start. During the time of the middle-aged Roman government there was a priest, Saint Valentine who was martyred because he believed the soldiers were better fighters if they were married. Basically, a man would fight well if he had something or someone to fight for and live another day to fight again. Well the government had others plans in mind. Saint Valentine stuck to his beliefs and married many soldiers without the government knowing. Well, obviously, they found out and charge him to death. The church wanted to honor his sacrifices by celebrating him annually to commemorate his death but there was a dilemma.
Lupercalia. A fertility ritual for the god of agriculture. It was intended to bring fertility and keep out evil. Men would sacrifice animals and whip women (among other things) with the hides of the animals they killed. This festival went on around the 13th to the 15th of February. Men would pick names out of jars to be coupled with during the festivities or even longer if the pickings were ripe. When in Rome, right? The church had enough of these rituals and unnatural practices, so they fought celebrate Saint Valentine in its place, making the date February 14. Smack dead in the middle of Lupercalia! There were many other renditions of this “holiday” and I won’t give you all the dish, but read here for more historical information. Both “holidays” have similar motives, love, but wow! What a way to celebrate, huh?
Fast forward today, and Valentine’s Day is one of the most “well-spent” holidays in American history. Seems as if we get a kick out of turning pagan holidays into a money monument. Personally, I became uninterested in the holiday back in 2005 when my fiance (now husband) went to Denny’s for breakfast and the waitress was literally flirting with him our entire visit.
First she introduced herself as our server but stared at Ray the entire time! Then when we placed our order, she gave him extra syrup and it was warm as if she made it herself, me? Well, mine came out of the bottle…cold! It’s funny now because I see how disrespectful and desperate she was. But, she took the cake with this next move… We ordered a strawberry milkshake after our meal. Not only did she give Ray the milkshake, but the entire blender!! You can’t make this up!! Yes! The ENTIRE BLENDER!!! I’m sure she lost her job after that! Mind you we were not the only couple there. It’s Valentine’s Day and a Saturday, so that Denny’s was crowded! What if the next table wanted a milkshake?! They didn’t get it because the blender was at OUR TABLE!
From this day forward, I can do without the holiday. It is always nice to have a date or celebrate relationship, but honestly, the holiday is overrated. If you celebrate Valentine’s Day, good for you and I hope you have a great time. As for me, I’m the day after type of consumer. 🙂 All the sales and clearances, it’s like Christmas for me!
If you celebrate Valentine’s Day, what do you do to make it memorable? If you don’t how do you celebrate your love? Share!