It’s the day for love, so the merchandisers say, and a lot of money and anxiety will be spent today living up to that expensive expression of emotion.

And why not? Celebrating love and especially romantic love for one day is perfectly fine and fitting, at least as long as there are no impertinent questions about the other 364 days of the year.

Even nicer is that St. Valentine’s Day isn’t only about romantic love. It has a long tradition of being about friends and family as well.

It has an even longer tradition of being about none of the above, but never mind. For now, let’s focus on the dull scissors and cutout hearts of elementary school where schoolmates and neighbors all got a valentine no matter how lame.

The thought counted, though. It’s worth remembering today, especially as Lake Havasu City heads into one of its busiest weekends of the year. Fireworks are blasting and the crowds are gathering at SARA Park. Along the waterfront, the music and the fashions and vintage vehicles relive an era’s lifestyle at Rockabilly Reunion.

Combine those events with Valentine’s Day and a dinner reservation may be a tough ticket. That’s where the true spirit of Valentine’s Day really comes into play.

What is the true spirit of the holiday? Well, there really isn’t one. The day originally honored a Catholic saint (or two of the same name, probably) who was executed by the Romans and martyred.

See the connection to love? No? Correct.

Later, it appears, the Romans used the day to introduce male adolescents to females of the same age, requiring that they spend a lot of time together for a year. The connection to love is still weak and murky.

Based on history, then, St. Valentine’s Day is really about whatever one wants to make it. At this point, the commercial interests have pretty much won but we’d suggest there’s room for a broader celebration of love, the variety that deals with kindness for others.

That’s something to remember at crowded events and while waiting on traffic. Mawkish sentiment aside, sharing a little love is a fine way to get through a busy weekend.

— Today’s News-Herald


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