What the Valentine?

valentines scribbles

Happy Valentine’s Day! Are you living it up in candy land? Bought up every rose in town for your sweetheart, or cooking up a special meal for your man? Did you wear red or pink? Did you even go so far as to wear hearts?

Or is this more your type of Valentine’s sign?


The other day I was down at the cafeteria picking up lunch, when hottie from next door walks in. He’s got a salmon-colored shirt, with his fancy tie and suit pants, and just a little bit of scruff on his chin. The girls at the counter, who are about 19 years old or so, take his order and comment on his pink shirt. It starts out as a cute comment, just her saying she liked that he wears pink.

One of the girls says, “Hey! You could wear that shirt for Valentine’s Day!” Hottie, trying to be nice, just smiles and says, “Yeah, I may have to.” But I can see he just wants to get his lunch and go back to work.

Then the other girl, who coincidentally enough was wearing black that day, straightens up, her opinion on Valentine’s Day ready to burst right out of her.

jae scribbles

There’s nothing uglier on a girl than bitterness. Hottie didn’t know what to say. What do you say to rain cloud types that won’t get you struck by lightning?

It’s not that I don’t understand where she’s coming from when it comes to Valentine’s Day. I used to feel the same way. I’ve never received the dozen roses, the chocolate—the anything—on Valentine’s Day. Still haven’t. It’s possible that I might never, but that’s not the point.


rain cloud girl scribblesThe BFF and I used to have a roommate that almost put us off roommates forever. (We just didn’t realize there were even crazier things to come). I’m going to call her Rain Cloud Girl—RCG from here on out.

RCG is really sad, because she thinks the world treated her wrong somehow and she’s got to let you know about it—every minute of every day. Even if you have something really great happen, like you got that dream job or a new boyfriend or just had a fantastic day—the last person you want to tell is RCG. She might remind of Downer Debbie. In fact, we wonder if the SNL writers secretly came out to our house for inspiration.

jae scribbles



I don’t think RCG lived with us during a Valentine’s Day. I can only imagine what might have tumbled out of her mouth if she did. If there’s one thing RCG inspired me to do, it was to shove those dark rain clouds out of my life and get happy.


Here’s the thing. If I had the boyfriend of my dreams and he got me roses on Valentine’s Day I’d be ecstatic. I’d be telling everyone how awesome he was and how happy it made me—everyone except the rain cloud types, because I know they’d just kill the mood.

I don’t want to be rain cloud girl.

So I’ve decided to let people have their fun, get excited for the girls who have boyfriends of their dreams, and I even go so far as to wear red on that day to show my support for those who do enjoy the holiday.

Plus I got myself a nice present of framed art which should be ready either today or tomorrow. In fact, that was sort of Hottie’s response.

treat yourself scribbles

And he’s right. Why not find our own positive way to celebrate? We choose whether or not we’re going to be happy, no matter what situation we’re in. We choose.


What’s the point of all this? Valentine’s Day tends to pull out the worst in some people because of one simple thing: envy. So and so doesn’t have the roses, or the chocolates, and since misery loves company then nobody else can be happy on V-Day either.

But this goes beyond Valentine’s Day for some folks. We’ve all seen the people who can’t be happy for anyone’s success as long as they haven’t got it themselves. Maybe you’re the only single person left in your group of friends. Or maybe you’re the only one without kids in your group. Or maybe your friend is published and you’re not. Whatever it is, envy is ugly, whether you’re a guy wearing it or a girl.

poisonI know, some people may flaunt whatever they’ve got that we’re lacking in our faces. But that doesn’t give us the right to be a resentful jerk back. There’s a certain quote (they say by Nelson Mandela) I always remind myself of to chase the rain clouds away:

Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.

Being bitter on V-day does more damage to oneself than it does to anyone else. And if this is truly the holiday of love, shouldn’t we at least be loving ourselves?

There will always be haves and have-nots, whether with money, with love, with family—whatever it is. But the only way to live a good life is to chase those rain clouds away and choose happiness.

So choose happiness, my friends. And Happy Valentine’s Day!


23 thoughts on “What the Valentine?

  1. Well said! And I think there’s nothing wrong with using Valentine’s Day as a day of friendship love, too – there were many V-days I went out with friends instead of a boy and had a great time. 🙂 Happy day of love to all!

  2. You hit the nail right on the head. It’s all about attitude. When someone’s willing to change, they will reap the biggest rewards. Even if there’s an awkward moment or an embarrassing situation, the person with a good attitude will enjoy the night and probably make fun of it themselves! And that’s a good thing. Because if you can’t make fun of yourself, who can you make fun of? So, let’s get out there and have fun!

    • Fun is really what matters anyway, right? Enjoy life and all it has to offer. Hard times are a given for all of us, but whether or not we’re happy—that choice is up to us. Thanks for commenting!

  3. “Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word happy would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness. It is far better take things as they come along with patience and equanimity.”–Carl Jung

    • I’m sorry I did not communicate better the purpose of this post. Happiness as a choice does not mean a life naive to sadness or darkness, nor a life absent of these things. I think Hugh Downs said it best, “A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances, but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes.”

      Choosing to be happy is a choice we have to make every day. For some reason, I picture winning a physical fight. There will be bruises and blood and maybe even broken bones, but we’d miss the elation of victory if we focused too much on the hurt rather than the triumph. Or worse, if we gave up and let that darkness destroy us. That’s what I see as choosing to be happy.

      • I feel like you tried to chastise me as if I were a child because I didn’t agree 100% with your opinions. All I did was point out a slightly different viewpoint. Why you would equate something as wonderful as happiness to the pain of a physical fight concerns me. There are times where we won’t choose to be happy, and that’s okay. It’s all a part of being a human being. When I was robbed at gunpoint, I wasn’t very happy. When I learned my seven year old niece was sexually assaulted, I wasn’t very happy. When I learned my younger sister was selling her body, I wasn’t very happy. And before anyone asks, those things really did happen. Perhaps we shouldn’t condemn people who aren’t happy, but try and understand why they feel the way they feel. All I know is if I was your former roommate and I came across this post, I’d be hurt and angry…not very happy at all. To say the only way to live a good life is by choosing happiness is only half true. Learning how to overcome heartache, pain, and every hardship in our lives is the other half. In my opinion, that’s something each of us has figure out in order to be truly happy.

        There’s a line from a Wonder Years song that goes, “It’s not about forcing happiness, it’s about not letting sadness win.” I hope you understand that one day. Sorry if I offended you, it won’t happen again. Have a great day.

  4. That maked me smile. And I must say I agree: we should not allow our situations to define us, rather what we make out of them. I’ve never gotten so much as a paper valentine from a sister or friend, but Valentine’s Day is for sure one of my favorite holidays. It gives you a moment to think about who you love, why, and to share it.

  5. I think I’m more frustrated by Singles Awareness Day type-negativity than watching couples celebrate, even if sometimes it’s a bit too mushy for me.
    People are more likely to enjoy happy people, so finding the positive is essential to a good life.
    As aLife-Coach trained Santa told my 30 year old sister: “Do the things you enjoy doing, be happy, and people will be attracted to you.”

    • And that’s what makes it fun to participate? Don’t you think? Seriously, as soon as I stopped being a disgruntled grump and started embracing the holiday I suddenly felt like a burden had been lifted. That’s why I’m spreading the word. Thanks for your comment!

  6. OK, first of all, RCG’s “Superstar” shirt is killing me. It’s perfect.

    Love this post. It’s so true, and I definitely see how it applies to other people being published. The thing with all of this is that people treat it like someone else being published (or falling in love, or getting a raise, or buying a puppy) somehow makes it less likely that they’ll see their dream come true when usually that’s not the case. It’s not like there’s only so much happiness to go around, and these people are sucking it all up.

    I totally understand jealousy, mind you. And I’d probably be pretty miffed if someone else got a book published that was so much like mine that I’d look like a copy-cat if I did anything with mine. But there will be other stories, and there will be other opportunities… just like there are other fish in the sea.

    • You’ve summed it up awesomely. (And I’m glad you liked the “Superstar” detail). There’s room for all of us because we always want more good stuff to read. And if someone’s book is similar to yours, all good. I read Twilight (didn’t like) and another book called Firelight (did like). See, even their titles are almost identical. The story line is pretty much the same, although I think Firelight executes it much better. Which means something can have the same basic plot but still appeal to readers. Like you said, plenty of happiness and opportunity to go around. Sheesh, I kind of feel like we’re two peas in a pod. 😉

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