Happy Valentines… my love is like a Red Red Rose……

by Julian Westaby.

I’m a hopeless romantic. I’m hopeless at being romantic. It seems like I ain’t alone here. We’ve done a bit of a straw poll (okay, we asked all the punters in the studio here) and it appears that NOBODY actually likes Valentine’s Day. So, how come, in the face of this overwhelming abhorrence of this crass commercialisation and over-inflation of all things ‘D’Amour’, do we continually get erm…sucked-into it, every bloody year? Love isn’t just blind, it appears to be terminally stupid.

Personally, I thought ‘Valentine’s’ was a ‘Day’ invented by some red-braces-wearing, enterprising, PR person back in 1980’s London, while he was waiting the three days for his mobile phone to charge up. A bit like ‘National Sausage Week’, ‘Hug An Asylum-Seeker Tuesday’ or whatever else they dreamed-up, to gain what used to be called ‘column inches’, when we had things called ‘newspapers’.

But no! Our in-house romance research team (wackypeedia) has told us that Valentine’s Day has been kicking-about since Roman times and really got rolling about 300 years ago! For instance, in Victorian times, some lovers (mugs) regularly shelled-out around £10 for an elaborately-created and hand-crafted Valentine’s Card. £10? Way back then? Sheesh, those Victorian geezers had money to burn! No wonder Fagin and his boys had such rich pickings.

Sadly, jumping forward a Century, no-one has got any the wiser. It’s the lambs-to-the-slaughter, submissive attitude that everyone adopts that pisses me off. People just accept it. They don’t rebel, they slavishly comply.  It’s not fun. Is there anything LESS romantic that filling the coffers of your local Trattoria on the day in question, surrounded by loads of other people TRYING to be romantic? In any given restaurant on this, the unsexiest of days, 50% (depending on who wears the trousers in the relationship) would definitely rather be somewhere else altogether. A root-canal dentist, Ikea on a Bank Holiday, a Glasgow prison shower block…anywhere.

It’s just SO forced and if you force someone to love, it’s usually immoral, Illegal or never really works out and they steal half your house off you. There’s the flowers, anything in pink, heart-shaped-everything, the fucking appalling Valentine’s albums that re-issue some of the most heinous crimes against music to poison the minds of a whole new generation. It’s just NOT romantic, it’s definitely not sexy. Some bloke with a frigging acoustic guitar, singing a ‘love’ song in you lughole, that’s usually actually about unrequited love, someone dying on a cruise ship or a stalker anyway.

After all, if you were REALLY in love on this special day, the last thing you’d be doing would be sitting in a crap restaurant eating ‘themed’ food and drinking horrible pink ‘champagne-esque’ rot-gut, eating oysters and trying to pretend it’s not like licking cold spittle off a tortoise.

You’d actually be at it like knives, writhing-about in unbridled ecstasy in the comfort of a mystery Travelodge or atop a mound of empty cans and bottles and un-ironed ironing, in a squalid flat, which you’ve not tidied-up because you’ve been shagging for an entire week.

You’d maybe walk, John-Wayne style, through to the kitchen for more ice cubes or to the loo for more Vaseline but planning a hugely overpriced Chauteaubriand ‘a deaux’ alongside dozens of other embarrassed and sad buggers, to the background music of a constantly printing chip and pin machine? I don’t think so.

I say, rise up and declare war on those forcing a love day on you! Love is free! Love is eternal! It’s not just for February. The only beneficiaries for the un-sexiest day of the year are florists, teddy fucking bear shops, restaurant owners and petrol station supermarkets, who save the bacon of the real last minute-Larries by offering sweatmeats and floral face savers.

This year, don’t take part….just tell everyone you’ve got a fucking terrible headache.