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Main » Articles » ISSUE #2

St.Valentine's Day

   It is worth turning around and you can see one or another couple of sweethearts walking along the street, holding each other by the hand and talking about something private, known only by them. Somewhere in the distance a father sees off his daughter to school and she gives him a gentle kiss on his cheek. There a group of students going to college to tackle a subject. Here, each situation is different but the all have love in common.

   In order to be content people need to continuously have this feeling inside, keep it and recognize that you need somebody and that somebody needs you.  As David Foster said: "To love and to be loved is to feel the sun from both sides”. For having this sun as much as possible we make romantic dates, give special presents, whisper fine words and even devote one of the days to this feeling. In 1600 W. Shakespeare wrote about this:

Tomorrow is Saint Valentine’s day,

All in the morning betime,

And I a maid at your window,

To be your Valentine[1]

   Valentine's Day is traditionally  considered the day when people in love expresse their emotions by giving the greeting cards – valentines, chocolates packed in a red satin, heart-shaped box or the bunch of flowers. 

In the 1980s, the diamond industry began to promote Valentine’s Day as an occasion for giving jewelry, that is why some loving women nowadays expect from their husbands and/or lovers a little bit more than just the "ordinary” card. 

Although in this point the cultural differences should be taken into account. Thus, for example, in Finland this day translates into English as "Friend’s day”, and the expensive gifts are not appropriate. 

In South Korea, similar to Japan, women give chocolate to men on February 14, and men give non-chocolate candy to women on March 14 (White Day).  On April 14 (Black Day), those who didn’t receive anything on the 14th of February or March go to Chinese restaurant to eat black noodles and "mourn” their single life. 

   In the United States everything looks pretty much the same for us.  This day is celebrated in honor of how St. Valentine supported lovers or couples in love by getting them married against the wishes of the Emperor Claudius. Despite having no historical basis whatsoever there is a legend that before Valentine was to be executed, he wrote the first "valentine” card and addressed it to a young girl, the jailer’s daughter whom he had befriended and healed, or both.

   This day is not only concentrated among couples or lovers but has been chosen by the American people as the day of expressing your love, respect and gratitude to parents and teachers. The U. S. Greeting Card Association estimates that approximately 190 million valentines are sent each year in the USA. More than the half are given to family’s members or friends and then to the object of your admiration. The popularity of these cards among almost all ages explain the diversity of valentines: 

    This day also may be considered as a commercial one for some industries. We have already mentioned about the diamond sector in the couple of countries. In Japan the confectionaries make a good profit in holiday days because their love and respect are measured by the quantity of this sweet product.  Besides, the marshmallow manufacturers have tried to popularize this celebration and wanted men to return marshmallows to women on White day.


   The American restaurants offer a special six-course tasting menu includes choices within most courses and dishes such as Maine lobster duo with black brioche, crusted lobster  and lobster bisque, Filet Mignon with oxtail crust and sunchokes, and Foie gras napoleon with quince and shaved radish.  Though it is not so cheap many people are ready to spend more this day. Of course, a lot of depends on the quality of food, service and even interior decorations but anyway you should not expect the reasonable prices on Valentine’s Day. 

In a fancy restaurant the menu is priced at $110 per person with an additional $55 for wine pairings.  Also, you can pamper yourself with a $75 three-course tasting menu with a choice of appetizer, entrée and dessert. Somebody who prefers to stay at home and enjoy spending time with each other in the pleasant atmosphere is able to save substantially on the dinner because the local retail stores such as Wal-Mart, Save a lot, ShopRite keep the price low even on this day.


   In spite of the imitation popularization of this day, for many people it is still just one more chance to say "I love you”, to look back on a situation when you met this person and realize that it wasn’t a childish infatuation, or a brief moment of vanity, to realize that this person is your pure love.


[1] William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act 4, Scene 5


Category: ISSUE #2 | Added by: Guzeliya (24-Feb-2011) | Author: Valery Philippov
Views: 357 | Comments: 1 | Tags: Valentines, traditions, relations, Lovers, sweatheart, couple, St'Valentine's Day, Love | Rating: 5.0/1
Total comments: 1
Valera! Thank you for the article:) I know that February, 14th is your birthday, BTW how did it go this year, far away from home?

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