Monday, February 06, 2012

Quiet Monday morning

I did find something I felt like working on later yesterday evening. I was digging around in my bag of single-balls of worsted weight yarn for two shades of blue for a crochet project to be discussed later, and I ran across that Vintage Vertical Striped Blanket I've been working on on and off (mostly off) over the years. I added another row and part of a second row. (It's fairly "mindless" crochet...just all double crochets, and you're working into the space, rather than the stitch, of the row below).

I may pick away at this some this week, especially since it's turned colder. (And I kind of wish I had it now in my office to be working on, maybe even to flip the non-working end over my shoulders: it's 17 C in my office right now and there's cold air shawling down out of the overhead vent. I can't wait to see what temperature my lab room is; it's ranged from about 85 F to maybe 60 F over the past couple of weeks.)

The first wave of pony valentines went out this morning. I still have lots left, so if you want one - don't be shy about e-mailing me your address. I like doing this because for me, at least, it brings back some of the childlike fun of Valentine's day. (As an uncoupled person, I still want to celebrate in some way - it's no fun going too long without any kind of celebration, and it's also not that fun seeing other people celebrating something in a way you really can't). And also, I feel like it's a slap back against what I see as the awful quid pro quo attitude that some of the advertisers (normally I would be glaring in the direction of PajamaGram this time of year, but apparently Teleflora's "big game" ad essentially suggested there are women out there who will prostitute themselves for a nice bunch of flowers.) And that, I think, pinpoints what I hate about what Valentine's Day has become: not the "poor me I'm single so I have no one to send me flowers" aspect, at least not for a few years now, but rather the "Give her something and you'll get something-something."

Maybe I'm too much of a romantic (which might actually help explain my uncoupled state: an unwillingness to compromise on certain things), but I prefer the idea of giving someone flowers because they LOVE that person and would like to make them HAPPY. Not thinking about what, if anything, they get in return. (That's a lot closer, I think, to the classic image of the little kid holding out a handful of dandelions they picked: Look, they're pretty! They make me happy! I want to make you happy too!)

(And this is how I tend to see everything as being connected: the Sunday School lesson this week was on the "faith vs. works" question - the idea that one should do good not hoping to "buy" one's way into Heaven (because that is not possible), but that one should do good out of love, expecting no return.)

I don't know. I suppose you can argue a similar thing has been done to Christmas - the idea that ads promote gifts to "impress" people, and yeah, some of the ads do that. But it seems like there's enough else to the 'sanctioned' celebration of the holiday that I (at least) can ignore the buy-your-sweetie-a-car ads, even though I'd probably prefer those ads not be on. But Valentine's Day - if you're an adult there seems to be only one model for celebrating it. (Well, perhaps mothers of young children get to have another model: doing fun stuff for your kids. I know at least one year my mom made pancakes (on a school day!) for Valentine's Day breakfast).

And I think of the comment in one of my mother's older (circa 1960s) cooking and entertaining books that remarked something like "Valentine's day, like Hallowe'en, is largely a holiday for children." And I think I like extending that to those of us who remember what we were like as children.

1 comment:

Diann Lippman said...

Ken and I have never done anything for Valentine's Day. No dinner out, no flowers, no candy, no jewelry, no card - nothing. And we prefer it that way. We figure if you can be nice to each other and do "special" things all the time, why bother for a Hallmark holiday?

It is a little funny watching other women in the office show off their bouquets sometimes - they feel bad that I don't have one too!