The best thing about Valentine’s Day is… February 15th. No, you didn’t read that wrong. The day after Valentine’s Day is indeed my favorite day in February. Don’t misunderstand me—I am not a woman scorned in any way, nor do I have traumatic memories of the 14th from years and boyfriends past.
I have actually had some great Valentine’s Days, being told that I am loved, showing others that I care, and eating those little candy hearts with which the shelves of every store seem suddenly to be overflowing.
But that’s the problem: It’s as if, every year, the stores overestimate how many candy hearts they will sell and are always left with way too many of them, with their cutesy messages and atrocious grammar and spelling that never fail to turn my stomach.
In short, my favorite part of Valentine’s Day is the big letdown the next morning, when that magical Valentine’s-Day-glow has finally died off and the world has to deal with its sickeningly adorable state of disarray, buckets of leftover candy hearts still stuck on the shelves.
The 15th is the day when we all come down from the “love high” in which we have allowed ourselves to take part. It’s the day for the whole world to recuperate from its sugared-up love overdose after too many chocolates and roses and candy hearts and dates and movies and friends. It’s in the aftermath of that affection coma that we know who actually cares and who happened to have an extra valentine card in their box of 24.
My friends are the ones who joke with me about the couples who become ridiculous on February 14th and the next day can’t stop saying “Aw!” when I tell them about what my boyfriend and I did for our date. They are the ones that go to the store and buy tons of candy hearts at a ridiculous discount just because they can.
Even though we become sick of love from the days leading up to the 14th, we still show it to each other. That’s why I love February 15th with its happy cynicism and cheerful antipathy of all things pink and heart-shaped. That’s when my friends really say, “I love you,” with bags and bags of cheap candy hearts.