ThinkStock: Hate this couple? The problem might be you. Valentine’s Day is a commercial holiday designed to put outrageous pressure on couples and make single people feel depressed and alone, right? Well, before you conduct the obligatory eye roll at the question, “Got any plans for Valentine’s Day?” you should know something: It’s not Valentine’s Day that has the problem—it’s us.
The holiday allegedly began with an early Christian Saint named Valentine who was imprisoned for performing secret weddings for soldiers that were forbidden to marry. While awaiting execution he wrote a letter to a woman and signed it “From your Valentine.” By the 15th century, couples were exchanging mushy cards, candy, and flowers on February 14, which is believed to be the anniversary of St. Valentine’s death. Probably not what Saint Valentine had envisioned while he was counting the days to his grisly execution. So the next time you want to blame Valentine’s Day for all that’s wrong with the world, know this:
It’s not the holiday’s fault that on February 14 it’s impossible to get a reservation anywhere decent. And if you do manage to score a table, its always by the front door that blasts cold air from people shuffling in and out. Nor is it the holiday’s fault that pre-fix gimmick meals are the only menu options created by chefs who are pissed about the inevitable request to stuff an engagement ring inside a soufflé on the least-tipped day of the year. Check, please!