Adoption of the holiday as a celebration of romantic love was first recorded in Geoffrey Chaucer’s work, Parlement of Foules. Translated from Old English, he wrote, “For this was on St. Valentine’s Day, when every bird cometh to choose his mate.” It was during this medieval and Renaissance period that the tradition of sending cards and tokens of endearment to sweethearts became established.
I fondly recall that as a youngster, I would carefully make valentines for each of my school classmates. If I remember correctly, we would buy packets of coarse paper cards and envelopes. With these we would cut out the cards and envelopes, paste them together, and carefully choose which card to send to which classmate. There was always that special person, something akin to Charlie Brown’s little red-haired girl, for whom I would select the most special card. Just like Charlie, rarely would my sentimental feelings be acknowledged or reciprocated.
While the world has a tiny number of guys who always seem to have just the right mix of romance and charm, the rest of us more typical males have to stick together and look after one another. Remember, you were warned. Thursday is the magic day, not Friday. And, as I inferred earlier, no Valentine card is too mushy or romantic and no box of chocolates is too large. One final reminder – if you harbor a dream of becoming a martyr like St. Valentine, get her a box of diet candy.
Larry M. Jones is a retired Navy commander and aviator who raises cattle and hay in the Brock/Lazy Bend part of Parker County. Comments may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.