Current Essays

VD On:2009-02-13 04:10:16

To the absolute whatsit-shrivelling horror of every single red-blooded male in the whole civilised world, today we are facing that dread Day when anciently the birds were fabled to select their mates; and latterly the Day when humans chose and honoured theirs; and modernly the one when every first-through-third grader in the whole United States vows his, her or its passionate undying love for every other first-through-third grader in their class irrespective of looks, popularity, ethnicity, or indeed sex or sexual orientation: or rather, and more accurately, vows their school board's passionate undying love for every grade of political correctness and blind, slobbering non-exclusivity!

And, as usual in these essays, I've come, this dread Day, to tell you why you, and more particularly all those damned first-through-third graders and their evil school boards, have got it completely wrong.

First of all, forget all that Esther Howlandish crap with the red cardioid covered cards and the frilly sentiments, and the other crap with the red roses; if you really want to celebrate the true St. Valentine's spirit, then all you young men should be out there with raw and bloody strips of sacrificed goat, running around practically (or even completely) naked, thwacking away at any girls you can find to keep 'em fertile because the februal, febrile fifteenth of February was the ancient Roman festival of the Lupercalia and, just like Christmas and so many other of our festivals, it is I fear something gross and Roman that lies behind our modern Day--so like the Luperci let's cry "Io! Faune! Bring on the girls and the sacrificial goats! And just remember to hold your nose!"

Of course it could all just be a co-incidence of timing, merely two wildly separated groups of wild guys following the wild dictates of 'In the Spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of...' well quite frankly to thoughts of that which has been recurring to him every five minutes ever since they were lightly turned last Spring---so that co-incidence may be spurious; especially when we take in to account the fact that it's really only exhaustion, and the result of too many rejections, and the running out of red roses or goats to sacrifice, that stops the randy buggers continuing to do the things of the Valentine season all the rest of the year.
Then of course there is the eponymous St. Valentine themselves: there were in fact somewhere between zero and four (or even more) of him, one of whom might just have been the great Gnostic thinker Valentinus (whose heretical attitude toward sex was so much more fun than the mainstream Christian one in the second century). All that is certainly known about them amounts pretty-well to 'other than Valentinus, who is solidly historical, some of him might possibly have existed'.
The twittering of romantic love (as distinct from, say, goat and girl abusing; or on the whole really rather preferring martyrdom) on St V's Day seems to have emerged from birds in the High Middle Ages and dropped like manna falling from the skies onto the populace. As Chaucer says in his 'Parlement of Foules ':
For this was on Seynt Valentynes day
Whan every foul cometh ther to chese his make
And then, all too soon, St.-V-Day love was no longer strictly for the birds and mere humans started choose; and to call each other Valentine in their lust and their liking. And, just like the birds and Gnostic Valentinus and just possibly the Romans, the essence of the exercise has alwayd been implicit connubiality: dating, and with any luck mating. Or even (to the absolute whatsit-shrivelling horror of every single red-blooded male in the whole civilised world) ...marriage---always bearing in mind that it isn't premarital sex if you are not going to get married afterwards.

So, now I leave you with what I hope is a towering outrage at all those school boards for forcing these vile aspects of St V Day and all its ...its concomitant lasciviousness onto our all unwitting and nubility-challenged pre-pubescents!

And Love and Kisses to you all for now
Richard Howland-Bolton

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