Why Nobody Gains from Valentine’s Day

All people in the universe are either in a relationship or not, and all people in the universe are either happy about that or not. Whichever category you’re in, Valentine’s Day is useless – with one microscopic and surprising exception.


Happy Singles

It’s totally irrelevant! And at the margin, a bit annoying because you can’t get a restaurant table, lots of your friends can’t come out to play because they’re out on contrived dates (see below), and should you happen to want to buy flowers for your mum, they’re suddenly absurdly expensive.

Happy Couples

They don’t need it: they’ll be capable of being romantic without instruction from Clinton Cards or whomever. Since spontaneity, originality and celebrating our uniqueness are central to love and romance, Valentine’s Day is a hindrance because it suggests actions (dinner, flowers etc.) which aren’t our own. Flowers on Valentine’s Day are less expressive, romantic or thoughtful than flowers on any other day of the year.

Unhappy Singles

Oh dear. Valentine’s Day highlights their misery. And not just for the one day, because the cards and flowers in shops remind them of their misery for weeks beforehand. Plus it pretty much prohibits dating for a while, for fear of an unnaturally fake ‘romantic’ dinner on the big day.

These may be the biggest losers, because the spotlight on their unhappy single-dom may prompt them into bad relationships.

Unhappy Couples

What are they supposed to do? Pretend, for one day, that everything’s OK, and go for an excruciating date together? Try to ignore it? Split up to avoid it?

In fact, this group may contain the only winners from the day – ironically – since it may prompt bad relationships to conclude rather than drag on.

So there we have it. Valentine’s Day is helpful for precisely nobody. Except…

The business of business…

Of course, the winners of Valentine’s Day are card companies, florists, chocolatiers, restaurant-owners, jewellers and other purveyors of other predictable ostensible vestiges of romance. Vestiges best ignored by real lovers who delight in celebrating each others’ individuality in more personal ways.

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