Valentine#039;s Day in a new light

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 14, 2004

Well, here we are again on Valentine's Day.

It has arrived.

And as always, this day finds me feeling rather pessimistic.

Email newsletter signup

Just what we all need, another Hallmark holiday, one with an almost promise in blood of feeling let-down.

Every year, you expect too much and get too little, or you expect nothing and that really sends you into the deep blue conumdrums.

In past years, I found myself with an empty carton of Blue Bell Rocky Road and the feeling that your stomach gets from eating too much.

Now, before I get gobs of hate mail for beating up on Valentine's Day, let me say that I don't feel that way this year.

Maybe it's my return to my hometown.

Maybe it's the fact that in the last year I've had a few close calls with the Grim Reaper.

I'm not sure, but I'm rather embracing Valentine's Day this year.

Maybe the change is because of something in the air, but my attitude has changed dramatically.

I did the strangest thing the other day.

I was strolling through a local retailer and saw a Valentine's card display.

I'm not talking about the Hallmarks, but rather those little cards you gave in elementary school.

I bought a box of them and came home and wrote out some notes on each.

I decided to mail them to various friends I've lost touch with and see what type of response I would get.

Within days I was getting emails from people I had not heard from in years and it felt good.

That was the desired effect I think.

I think when I first saw those cards, I was transported back in time when giving those cards focused us all on being friends.

I never enjoyed Valentine's Day in school.

I have to think many of us didn't because we didn't enjoy being forced to give cards to people we would not normally speak to or play with. However, in the end, those cards were good to laugh about at recess.

We've lost recess

something I think we all regret

but we don't have to lose our reason to smile on Valentine's Day.

I believe lovers, friends and relatives alike all feel loved and a card, a phone card or a flower reinforces that feeling. Sending any of these things can brighten up a day which often gets smothered in mass commercialism.

So, let me say that if you have found your true love or are still in the search, let yourself go a bit today.

If you see a stranger today, smile and say hello.

Send a card to someone you haven't seen in a while and call your parents (drastic but nice.)

However you spend the day, remember the spirit behind it, and forget the cynical nature it has taken on.

We live hectic lives and we especially need to take advantage of a day like Valentine's Day and be a little flightier and a lot happier than usual.

Smile today because it is a day of love.

Remember that you have friends, lovers and loved ones who love you despite your faults. Laugh a little.

Check that, laugh a lot.

That is more important than all the gifts in the world. At the end of the day, knowing you are loved is a lot sweeter too. So whatever your life holds for you today, have a happy Valentine's Day.




And forgive me for getting personal here, but to my Valentine, I'm sure this message will be read online at some point today.

Thank you for being my number one fan.

Always remember these words by Josh Grobman:

"When I am down and, oh my soul, so weary.

When troubles come and my heart burdened be.

Then, I am still and wait here in the silence,

Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains.

You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas.

I am strong, when I am on your shoulders.

You raise me up… to more than I can be."

Jay Thomas is the managing editor of the Greenville Advocate and can be reached at 382-3111, ext. 136 or via email at