Style File: Valentine’s Day or Single Awareness Day?

By on February 6, 2008

Skeptics would agree it’s no coincidence that St. Valentine’s Day falls during the shortest month of the year and offers nothing more than gloomy weather, chapped lips and lonely hearts. To some college students, February 14 is about as celebrated as a flat tire.

“Valentine’s Day is a holiday that is a lot of fun for little kids and people in relationships,” said senior history and political science major Kristen McGuire. “For everyone in between, it’s either the worst day of their year or just another day.”

While romantic souls see Valentine’s Day as a rose in the midst of a snowstorm, certain cynical singles can be caught referring to it as “singles awareness day.”

But what’s wrong with that?

As spring semester begins to crawl and that northeastern cold front continues, single students should use Valentine’s Day as an excuse to break away from the humdrum college routine.

Originally named for early Christian martyrs who were referred to as “valentine” saints, Valentine’s Day has evolved into an excuse to show romantic love and gratitude. But who says you have to be romantically attached in order to show appreciation?

“Buy cards and candy for your friends and neighbors,” McGuire added. “They can be your valentines if you really want.”

Take a moment and recall Valentine’s Day in the third grade. Nothing said “I love you” like a “Bee Mine” valentine shaped like a bumble bee, or Batman’s favorite “We’ll be bat buddies forever.” Cupid’s holiday was inevitably bursting with cookies, cupcakes and crafts.

First graders have the right idea. For $2.99, you can pick up a box of foolproof valentines and give them to your family and friends. They still make Batman ones and handing them out should pull you out of the doldrums for the afternoon.

“I’m sending my mom a card for Valentines Day,” said Mary Horton, a junior media studies major. A childlike approach to valentines is sometimes the best way to go.

Even the Quinnipiac University biology department plans on having fun the week of Feb. 14. Students taking BI 118L will get the chance to “capture their unique essence” in a Valentine’s necklace!

“The DNA lab used to be kind of boring,” Associate Professor of Cardiopulmonary Sciences and Biology 118 instructor Christine Fitzgerald said. “It needed life.”

And a precious life it was given. The exercise is called “Gene’s in a Bottle: Capture your unique essence!” Participating students extract cells from their inner cheeks. These cells undergo a scientific process which results in a visible white strand of DNA. This DNA fluid is strategically poured into a tiny heart-shaped plastic vile complete with wax cord and gives an entirely new meaning to “I gave myself to him.”

But if science isn’t your thing and ignoring Cupid altogether is the only method of perseverance, going to dinner and a movie with a group of friends is an enjoyable alternative. Have everyone order something different to create a buffet of new tastes. With all the fun it’ll be easy to forget about Valentine’s Day. Plus, the variety of subject matter at the theater makes it easy to either ignore or expunge romanticism.

For those whose friends are all paired off, the theoretically passionate evening can be transformed into a time to relax solo. Buy some flowers. Cook a favorite dinner, or order an entire pizza. Finish it all. Diets don’t count on singles awareness day. Besides, carbohydrates have been suggested to enhance mood and satisfaction. In other words, there are worse things than scoffing down an entire pizza on your own. And since you’re already in the kitchen, preferably in a sweat suit, why not try your hand at baking? Snuggle up with a horror movie, a blanket, and a giant batch of triple chocolate chunk cookies made with white and dark chocolate chips. Leave the kitchen a mess and masticate the leftover cookie dough. Chocolate, which is a great antioxidant in itself, has also been said to release endorphins; eat as much of it as you can. Hey, if being a lonely valentine isn’t an excuse to totally binge out on simple carbohydrates and sugar, then what is?

So quit being a Debbie Downer. No one said Valentine’s Day had to be a drag, and while it’s can still be treated as such, where’s the fun in that?

This year, embrace Cupid for what he truly stands for – a reason to wear pink and eat enough cookie dough to feed the entire Salvation Army.


About Gemma McFarland