Permission to be a Cheeseball granted

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Valentine's Day can be one of those holidays people love to hate. Forced commercialism, over-priced prix fixe menus, bad candy, cold weather, and dated red-and-white color schemes that remind you of elementary school cardboard cutout cards stuffed in contruction-paper envelopes. Even as I wrote all this down, I felt a little bit of my Valentine Scrooge peeking out, "Bah Humbug" I want to grumble, "I don't need Valentine's Day to express my love for someone, I have 364 other days to do that just as well!"

So why is it every time February 14th roles around, I'm oddly excited for cupid's arrow to tug at my heart a little bit? In a month as bleak as February can be, it is nice to think of the warm fuzzies, get all snuggly with your S.O., and celebrate a completely made up, arbitrary holiday, just because it's fun!

But are all the cheesy trappings really necessary? I've been thinking about ways to update the Valentine's Day experience, you know something cool, indie, hip, etc etc etc. But I think Valentine's Day is at its most potent when you just let it be what it is. Sweet and sappy.

I've been guilty of the cheese-ball Valentine gift myself. Picnic in my dorm room, surprise hotel room with jacuzzi/chocolate/everything short of rose petal turndown service (and i thought about it!, love coupons, you name it, I've done it.

I think one of my "true love" signs are when you can do something silly/ridiculous/cheesy like a Valentine's cliche, and your S.O. loves it, because you love doing it for them. And because it is easy with work, errands, opposing schedules and the million other things tearing us in every direction to forget how to be all romantic like. Setting aside a day in the middle winter for cuddlin' isn't such a bad idea!

So, I invite you all to embrace your inner conversation heart-lovin' dork and do something silly and sweet for Feb 14th. Go to dinner, see a show, make a picnic of whipped cream and strawberries, whatever floats your heart-shaped paper-doily boat! It's the one day where you can be a romantic cheeseball and it's totally encouraged!

Hugs & Kisses,
Michael