Why I Hate Valentine’s Day

That’s right, I really hate VD! (Yes, that joke was purely intentional.) It flat out sucks.

Not the traditional view of honoring consecrated love associated with Saint Valentine, just the modern way of viewing Feb 14th. Interestingly, Feb 14th isn’t technically the Feast of Saint Valentine in the Catholic Church – it’s really the Feast of Saints Cyril and Methodius (I may have to check my spellings on that). But the modern interpretation of Valentine’s Day is a bastardization of tradition, much like what commercialism brought to Christmas – a day no longer honoring Christ but instead it has become all about elves wrapping Santa’s packages to deliver to children nestled all snug in their beds. Okay, that sounded a lot creepier than I originally intended. Today, Valentine’s Day is all about chocolate covered strawberries and roses.

How do I know this? Because I’ve been a bakery manager for the past nine VDs and have been responsible for those (expletive) strawberries!! C’mon, people, show some originality. It’s like there’s some kind of law stating men have to buy their wives, fiancees, girlfriends, etc chocolate covered strawberries just because of VD (Yeah, that didn’t sound right either) unless said lady has some kind of intolerance to flowers and/or chocolate. (Just one of the MANY benefits of marrying my wife. Thanks, sweetie!)

Every year for the last eight years I’ve absolutely hated this holiday at work. And every year I tell myself I’m finding a new job before the next one. And every year that falls through. Well, not this year. I’m smart enough to realize that I’m stuck here until I – or the company – drop dead, especially given the increasing number of years since my last editorial job to which I’d much prefer to return. So, I have a new plan for next Valentine’s Day…

I’m petitioning all fellow fellows to help a brother out. It’s time for a new Valentine’s Day gift-giving tradition!!

Yes, brothers, chocolate covered strawberries have run their course. It’s time to think outside the box when trying to get into the box. It’s time to tap into our male creativity to come up with a new gift which will shock our better halves into completely forgetting about chocolate covered strawberries. I know men are up to the task. We, the gender which can casually add, “That’s what she said,” into any conversation has the imagination to come up with a new gift. We, the gender which can turn the most seemingly innocent statement, such as, “Hunting for Pokemon in the park,” into innuendo, has more than enough creativity to complete this assigned task! Heck, I’m giving you a whole year to do it! So, get out there and put your minds to it, especially now in this limbo between the Super Bowl and March Madness – guys, I repeat, YOU CAN DO IT!

Disclaimer: The Jason cannot be held liable for any shooting, stabbing or bludgeoning of any fools who think firearms, cutlery or lumber would make good substitutes.

Epitome of Random – vol. 21

  • I was playing with my kids’ oversized Lego pieces and built a dinosaur. I called it the Duplodocus.
  • We sell a cereal at our store called Love Grown. Gee, replace that second word with its homophone and you get something you wouldn’t expect to find in a grocery store…at least not in the cereal aisle.
  • Speaking of work, I was packaging cookies the other day when an employee from the deli walked past and said, “Be careful. You could get mugged for those.” He didn’t know that happened years ago. I recall the police report fairly well…”What did your attacker look like?” “He was blue, furry and had these crazy ping-pong ball eyes!” “Did he say anything?” “Yeah, he said, ‘Nom-nom-nom-nom-nom, COOKIEEEEEEEEE!’.”
  • I find it a little disturbing that my store sells a product called Justin’s Nut Butter. I find it more disturbing that it’s sold in a squeeze pack.
  • The other day some co-workers were trying to clean a hard to reach area but spraying air into them from those cannisters you can purchase at some stores. However, someone informed them, “There’s no air in those cans.” To which I replied, “Try feeding them some beans!”
  • The same day a lady was shopping our meat counter, down where we sell the sausages. She said, “I’ll take and Irish banger.” A man came up to her and said, “Top o’ the mornin’ to you, lassie. The name’s Charlie O’Charley, whatcha doin’ after?”

I Made a New Friend

The other day I took the car to the mechanic due to the largely-useless and often annoying check engine light coming on. You know, the one which lights up for any number of problems, the most of which garages are more than happy to just reset for you as they are no big deal to the safe operation of the vehicle. This time was one of the let’s-go-ahead-and-fix-that times so I got to sit in the waiting room for over two hours.

There were others waiting as well, including a woman with two of her children; one boy and one girl. The kids were very well-behaved and mom brought some simple electronic distractions. Not only that, but said electronic distractions were not noisy at all. They had a little breakfast from McDonald’s to start off their wait time then proceeded to entertain themselves. The most “distracting” thing the little knee-chompers did was, after a while, get off the couch and stretch out on their bellies on the carpet while enjoying their gadgets.

Then, after about 45 minutes, the little boy was up and stretching his legs. He stood right in front of me, but his hand on my knee, then leaned in and gave me a hug. It was too cute. I patted him on the back and said, “Hi there!” We shared a few moments, a fist-bump, a high-five and some polite conversation. I turns out his name is Billy and he is three-years-old. His sister is two. Billy and his sister have at least one other sibling; a ten-year-old brother who is this tall. Billy asked me if he’ll be this tall when he’s ten; I told him I think he’d be this tall. (Wait, you can’t see my hands. Okay, forget that part.) All-in-all, Billy was a very friendly and very cool kid. His sister briefly spoke with me, but I didn’t get any hugs from her (I guess the second one from Billy was for his sister).

As a father of five myself I certainly enjoy talking with kids. They are, after all, my intellectual equals (or superiors). And I was especially impressed with their mother. My wife and I do teach our kids about stranger-danger, and they don’t get much stranger than me, but I do like when our children can socialize and be themselves with people when mom and dad are around. I don’t want them so cautious of others that they become fearful. I applaud this mother for letting her son be himself. Perhaps if we were all a little more sociable with our fellow man our world would be a better place. And this coming from a very shy non-talker.

I was happy to make my new friend, Billy. He sure brightened my time in that waiting room, and I hope he continues to brighten others’ days as well. Maybe I should try harder to as well.