Stealing the heart of the season

Since Valentine’s Day is approaching, maybe I should start talking about Easter. I mean, come on; Easter will already be here in two to three months. We need to prepare. We need to buy plastic grass for our baskets filled with Cadbury Eggs and jelly beans before the world runs out.

Before you scoff at me for jumping too far ahead, please realize I was using extreme sarcasm.

Marketing and advertising strategies these days have grown to be annoying. Do we really need to see ghosts, skeletons and candy corn in August? Why can’t we let turkeys, Pilgrims and Native Americans enjoy their limelight without Rudolph hogging the stage three months prior to Thanksgiving? The only holiday I can think of that doesn’t overshadow the previous one is the Fourth of July. This must be because flags get more than one holiday to be admired.

As someone who starts planning what her next year’s Halloween costume will be by November 1st, you could say I am the worst of the worst when it comes to planning too far in advance. However, my love for wearing costumes and taking on different identities is the reasoning behind my hypocrisy, so give me a break.
Apart from that little side note, the point is this: How am I supposed to enjoy the preparation for the upcoming celebration when the holiday occurring five months later is being advertised?

When I was frolicking in Target in the teens of December, I was shocked and angered by the display of pink and red hearts which had overtaken two aisles by force. These shelves, which should have been displaying eggnog scented candles or fake pine trees, were tainted by Cupid’s presence.

The message I am attempting to embed in your brain is to enjoy each holiday for what it is and when it occurs. I ruined my season of Christmas music enjoyment by letting it seep into my brain too early. I did not carry through on my “no Christmas music is to be played until the day after Thanksgiving” rule, which in turn made it less special when the Christmas season officially began.

Enough about the other holidays though. It’s almost Valentine’s Day. Let’s savor the holiday of love, sweetness, and flirting. It is time to enjoy the rise of jewelry commercials, the abundance of stuffed bears that have recorded songs by Lionel Richie trapped in their innards, and the excess of chalky candies that have heart-warming messages like “Made4U” written with edible ink. It’s time for roses, not carnations; for Lindt chocolates, not Food Club; for frill, not grunge; for classic romantic comedies that display the acting skills of Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks. No Tim Burton films allowed. It’s an excuse to give guys and gals flirty Valentine’s without seeming like a creep.

So, go out and buy your Care Bear and Disney Princess Valentines (two of my favorite varieties), and please; send me one.

(Column published in MSUM’s campus newspaper, The Advocate)

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