Saturday, February 13, 2010

Aloha Nui Loa To All

Magnet # 167: Polynesian Dancer and Canoer

Material: Resin

Purchased By: Dad

Heads up, folks! Valentine's Day is tomorrow, so if you've got a sweetheart and haven't planned anything yet, there's not much time left. When I was out today, Savannah was pretty packed - moreso than usual. I'm not sure if it was all for the impending holiday, but it certainly was at Fresh Market. I don't know if I've ever seen so many people there. They even had tables set up at the front of the store to wrap up all of the flowers that were being purchased. I guess this is yet another holiday where most people wait until the last minute to prepare.

Valentine's Day is one odd holiday whose origins are truly tough to figure out. As many know, it's named after the martyr St. Valentine. But there are actually three martyred St. Valentine's recognized by the Catholic Church - so just which one does this day honor? Some think it might be all three, but just one was buried under the Via Flaminia, one of Rome's most important roads, on February 14. Legends surrounding this historical figure hold that he was a priest that defied Emperor Claudius II's decree that young men not marry, as they might become soldiers, for whom wives and children were perceived to be a detriment. Valentine continued to marry lovers in secret, and when his actions were found out, he was given a death sentence. Some say that while he was in prison, he sent the first Valentine greeting, for he had fallen in love with a young girl who came to see him there, perhaps the warden's daughter. He is said to have signed it "from your Valentine." Another claim is that Claudius himself even became friends with Valentine but had him put to death when he tried to convert the ruler to Christianity. He may have even helped his fellow Christians escape Roman persecution, and even escape prison. We may not have much concrete information of just who Valentine was, but he became a very popular saint in the Middle Ages. By then, he had been given his own day of feast on February 14. Some claim the Catholic Church did this to assimilate the pagan festival of Lupercalia, which was held on the thirteenth to the fifteenth of the month, into one of their celebrations, as they did with other holidays such as Christmas and Yule. But it wasn't until the 1800s that Valentine's Day truly became one of the most important holidays in the calendar. In England, the tradition of exchanging fancy hearts trimmed with lace and ribbons began, and it was soon imported into the United States and other parts of the world. Nowadays, homemade cards have given way to mass produced ones and flowers, candy, and many other gifts can be given on this day. Some say this celebration has gotten over-commercialized and that there are a few greedy women who simply expect too many goodies be given them, and I think they may have a point. But when celebrated in a fun, simple fashion, I think St. Valentine's Day can be a nice tradition - perhaps it's just been taken too far in modern times.

I got this adorable little Polynesian magnet just in time for Valentine's day and I thought it was pretty appropriate to post, along with a title that means "very much love" in Hawaiian. I had seen magnets with these cute little kewpie-like couples in my online magnet searches and really wanted one for myself. So when my Dad took another business trip there recently, I sent him a picture so he'd know just what to look for and he brought me back not one, but two. Yay - they are just so darn cute! And, yes, Valentine's Day does tend to be mostly about couples, but don't let that stop you if you're single. Get in touch with someone you love, and maybe go out with them for dinner or lunch. Some people celebrate Singles Awareness Day at this time of year to poke fun at what has become such a couple's tradition, gathering with their fellow single friends and wearing green, which is the opposite of red on the color spectrum. So whether you're single or in a relationship, have fun on this day. Go out - eat, drink, and be merry - then wait until Monday to buy Valentine's candy when it's all at least half off...

2 comments:

  1. Hawaii would be a LOVELY place to celebrate Valentine's Day - and it would be much warmer!

    ReplyDelete