Day 273: Presidents, Pennies, Paper Hearts and Pop Icons, It’s Time for The Wednesday Hodgepodge

The Wednesday Hodgepodge  is a weekly meme hosted by From This Side of the Pond.

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1.What makes love last?
Remembering details…I’m  not  talking about dates necessarily although remembering anniversaries etc. are important to lots of people I’m talking about remembering how your significant other likes their coffee/tea, their favorite snack etc. And laughter, there is no such thing as too much laughter.
2. The Beatles made their US debut fifty years ago this week. Are you a fan? If so, what’s your favorite Beatles tune? Yes I am The Beatles song Richard Dreyfus  sings for his son in Mr. Holland’s Opus, I can never remember the name of it.3. Valentine’s Day-your thoughts? Do you celebrate in any way? Do anything special for the people you love? Expect anything special from the people who love you?
I think Valentines has become overly commercial and couples centric,there is nothing wrong with being in a relationship but its fine to be single too. My father used to buy a single red rose each for my sister and I as well as my mom for a dollar at a gas station for Valentines day(yes, they were real roses). I  think Valentines Day would be better if society put less emphasis on romantic love and focus on the  other forms of love. I think February 14th is the perfect day for random acts of kindness.
4. Steak or burger…you have to choose. Now that that’s settled, how do you like it?
Steak, medium, with stuffed mushroom caps, caramelized onions and melted cheese
5. The Hodgepodge lands on the birthdate (February 12th) of Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States of America. Lincoln is quoted as saying, ‘Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test his character give him power.‘  Do you agree? Why or why not? Power does show us the best or worst in people and I think the reason for is that power opens opportunities  for a person that they may not have had otherwise.6. Honest Abe’s image is featured on the US penny (1 cent coin) so I’m wondering…what do you do with your pennies (or your country’s equivalent)?  It’s been suggested the US stop making the penny, and two bills have been introduced proposing just that, but neither were approved. What say you?
I would like to get a five gallon bucket and fill it with pennies and when its full send the money to UNICEF. Repeat.  I’m not really sure what good eliminating one cent pieces would accomplish.
7.  Do you think pop culture deserves serious study?
Yes because pop culture has a direct impact on us. If you don’t believe me look at how slang evokes.
8. The snow has finally turned us loose (for now) Perhaps Spring really is coming..Shirley Temple you will be missed. You may be the reason my sister started dancing.
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Day 232: A Different Kind of Valentine’s Day

Author: Bagande

Author: Bagande (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It is February again and Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. While I am not single anymore that has not always been the case and I admit to feeling exceptionally awkward about my single state the closer it got to the holiday. I do not believe that Valentine’s Day is a holiday simply made up by the greeting card and candy companies in order to sell more product but I do blame the current commercialism surrounding Valentine’s Day for a large part of my feelings of inadequacy during the month of February. Valentine’s Day is a day which celebrates romantic attachments. That’s great. The problem I have with the way a lot of people are encouraged to view the holiday is that it seems to paint being single in a negative light, as though not having a significant other makes a single person somehow less than or inferior to people involved in romantic relationships.

 

Some single people can ignore society’s pressure better than others, my sister has always been better at it then me. For several years she stayed single of her own volition. When Valentine’s Day came around and I would get blue she was the one who most often reminded me that being single was not necessarily a bad thing and that it did not make me any less of a person. She even brought me chocolates a few times. In today’s world there is a lot of fear, fear of threats both real and imagined. I believe the only way to effectively fight fear is with love. Not necessarily romantic love but the laws that resides in compassion and empathy. No matter where we originally come from we are all human we all bleed the same color. I believe we all would be better off if Valentine’s Day became a day to celebrate not just romantic love, but also love of self and community. I believe that if we teach the next generation that they will be well served. It has been said that before you can love someone else you must love yourself first. I also believe that person gives of themselves freely to others is more likely to attract romantic interest based on the principle of “what goes around comes around.” This Valentine’s Day why not try doing some random acts of kindness? I guarantee you will feel good about yourself and who knows what might happen?

Day 126:A Slightly Different View of Valentine’s Day

Scan of a Valentine greeting card dated 1909.

Image via Wikipedia

Well I meant to post this on the first of the month but apparently my internal editor had other ideas. It is very rare when I can write anything that doesn’t go through at least two minor edits even blog posts.

It’s February. I have had a love/hate relationship with this month in the past, and not just because I still have to use spell check to make sure I spell it correctly. I am not one of those people who is ever completely comfortable being single,I applaud people who are but that isn’t me. I tend to approach most relationships I get into as though it might be the last one…the one that sees me buried six feet under or scattered to the four corners or however I decide to eventually leave this earth. Call me a hopeless romantic if you want, I don’t really care. Some people believe Valentine’s Day was created as a purely commercial idea, I disagree.

When I was little my dad used to buy a single rose for my mom, my sister, and I on or close to Valentine’s Day. The roses were two dollars a piece and came from the local convenience store but the cost wasn’t the important part.

The important part to us girls at the time was that they were real, they made our room smell pretty for almost two weeks, and that pair of roses made us feel like the princesses daddy told us we were.

As I got older something else about our roses became important. For me Valentine’s Day was more of a family holiday. Yes, if there was money mom and dad went out on their own but we never felt left out. I think that if more people viewed the holiday as a day to show all the people closest to them how important they are, there just might be a few less single people with chips on their shoulders.

Rose colored glasses or not I think we would all be better off if more people used the day to validate each other regardless of relationship status.

day thirty seven: I know I’m being oversensitive…

2 X 4

Image by DRB62 via Flickr

I like Valentines Day, or to be more accurate I like the sentiment behind it.  The major thing I have against it  is the advertising  that goes on four weeks prior to the holiday itself.  Most of the advertisements, especially for jewelry seem to imply (for me at least) that any woman who doesn’t have a significant other to buy her what ever nice thing they happen to be selling is somehow deficient and less than what  she should be. Speaking from the experience of being a woman who hasn’t had a significant other to buy her things in some time I can say with a moderate degree of certainty that most of those women would gladly change that state if the opportunity presented itself.  We know we’ll represent a relative minority and being constantly reminded of it for at least two weeks before the aforementioned holiday is similar to being repeatedly beaten over the head with a 2 x 4.  Trust me when I say this, it hurts, some of us more than others I’m sure, but it hurts nonetheless. I’m not suggesting that companies completely stop advertising for the two weeks prior to Valentine’s Day but could you please give the less fortunate among us the links of at least two or three commercials before you decide to hit us over head again?

day thirty six: I am not too much of a fan…

DGJ_0467 -  Cupid and Psyche

Image by archer10 (Dennis) via Flickr

Its the day before Valentine’s Day.I’m not much of a fan to be honest.  I’m no one of those who believes it was a holiday created only for commercial reasons, don’t worry.  My reasons are much more personal and specific to me.  I am somewhat socially awkward truth be told.  I can hold a conversation on many things, the customs of  medieval Europe and Britain  for example. I can tell you who Valentine’s Day was named for and how he died and why.  I can tell the original story of Cupid, for starters he’s a grown man not the childlike cherub so many people depict nowadays, though he did have an impressive set of wings.I can see through most of the plots and books and movies to the much older story that was the basis for whatever book or movie it is.  The problem is that the people who appreciate that kind of knowledge are few and far between and people who are within 10 years of my age who carry that trait seem to be even more rare. The consequences of this is that I’ve been alone for a good portion of my life.  I am more or less alone again this year.  I struggle to convince myself that it can’t last forever but when February 14 finally creeps up on me and I’m still alone, it gets harder every year to believe that next year will be any different.  In case anyone’s interested while most people will be doing something with their significant others tomorrow evening I will be watching a dog show with Mom most likely.