Ah February – that wonderful time of the year where you either freeze to death in the cold or narrowly avoid death slipping on ice. Yes, February is a wonderful time of the British year. I don’t know what people are saying when they say February the 14th is just an excuse for companies to make money out of us. It’s not like you can only go to restaurants because it’s too cold for a picnic, only want to buy cheesy tat because the thought of buying t-shirts makes you shudder…Oh wait. In my 22 years on this planet I’ve gone through a variety of Valentine’s Days. I’ve had the personal ‘being single sucks’, the fake Valentine’s cards, the snotty friend going through a break up, right through to where I am now, the ‘meh, just another day, ooh look reduced chocolate!’ One common theme runs through every V Day though, I’ve always been single on it. Before anyone sits there thinking ‘oh poor, poor Alice’, don’t, just don’t. On the other hand, if you think for a second that I’m the kinda girl to preach on about companies making money out of us, well you can just keep walking. I genuinely have no strong feelings on the subject or the day itself. I actually think in a modern society filled with faceless social media and online gaming there’s a need to force people to show affection. On a separate but related note, the other day I saw this advert on TV and I made me a very little bit annoyed:
“OH COME ON! REALLY?!” (As if this website needs further drilling into our lives) Another ad campaign which is doing its rounds in the UK is the ‘Love Your Imperfections’ series of adverts by Match.com.
Saying ‘Love Your Imperfections’ is all well and good, but one of my imperfections is spilling coffee and tea over everyone and thing and I’ve yet to find anyone who loves that about me. It’s not even endearing, it’s ‘oh for God’s sake Alice’. Love is definitely too strong a word to describe my imperfections (#BlasphemeYourImperfections). (Sorry, I have to say something now as an FYI for the future. If you run towards me on a first date I WILL run away in fear, if you alter my collar I WILL find it controlling and I swear to goodness if you photo bomb a picture with my friends I will give you two words and push you away. And if that photo was even vaguely decent, run. Run away and never return. I won’t be responsible for my actions if you don’t. (There are many people in Southampton who can testify to all of this). So that’s where my head is at with Valentine’s. Love it, loathe it, or be indifferent to it. Single or taken, you can say whatever you want about the day. This year though was slightly different to normal years in that Shrove Tuesday (aka Pancake Day) was the Tuesday straight after Saturday 14th February. Potted Bible lesson: Shrove Tuesday is the first day before Lent, the period where traditionally you’re meant to forbear ingredients such as eggs, flour and milk for the 40 days before Easter. These ingredients were meant to be thrown out or consumed before Lent, and put together they make great pancakes. Shove Tuesday = Pancake Day (there is some logic behind it). Pancake Day gives people the excuse to binge on this delightful foodstuff and add all manner of toppings to it. Lemon, sugar, chocolate, fruit, the list goes on and on. Someone at work suggested savoury fillings like ham and cheese. She was shut down fairly quickly. If you’re like me, you also get excited when you inadvertently make your pancake look a little like a face: It looks like a face!
It got me thinking, why can’t single people quit their whining and celebrate Pancake Day like a sort of ‘singles day’ (without calling it that.) Think about it, you can go round to a friend’s house and laugh over the whole batter making, flipping, pancake on floor, start again thing and it’s socially acceptable to binge yourself silly. You don’t have to feel guilty eating your weight in sugar and Nutella. You can watch a guilty pleasure film or do anything you want under the tag line ‘I’m giving this up for Lent’. If you don’t fancy staying in there are all manner of ice cream/pancake/waffle parlours across the land that will do the job for you. Let the couples have Valentine’s Day, but let the single’s have a day too. If you’re in a relationship you’re probably feeding each other chocolate covered strawberries or spaghetti, or whatever it is couples eat. Single people are normal humans, we work and have money to spend and, with no one else around, we can be very impressionable. For example, I convinced myself that I would look awesome in animal hats thanks to a hat display in a shop. Oh, I don’t regret it, I do look awesome. Let us singles have a harmless day to binge and have fun and not feel guilty in doing so. Give me the chance devour these over an oversized teddy any day:
Seems like a fair trade.
Valentine’s or Pancake day, or, as I would like to call the whole period, Valake Day. Why make two events exclusive, when they could work together to make everyone happy? Couples, don’t get lovey dovey on Shrove Tuesday. Singles, stop wallowing in self pity and get a pancake down your throat. Do this and who knows, we may get through this depressing month a hell of a lot quicker.