Hearts and Flowers


They may try to tell you that St. Valentine’s Day is a holiday for everyone but don’t you believe it. St. Valentine’s Day is really a female holiday and that’s okay, that’s as it should be. It’s a mushy, lovely-dovey day for sweethearts. It’s to holidays what the “Lifetime” channel is to television.  A day for lovers, a day for men to buy red greeting cards and heart shaped boxes of candy and bunches of flowers and expensive presents for their best girls. It’s almost like having a Mother’s Day for all women. It’s the most romantic holiday of all holidays, certainly more so than Groundhog’s Day (unless you happen to be a groundhog).
If you don’t believe that Valentine’s Day is truly a woman’s holiday, then think about this: have you ever heard of a man feeling all neglected and getting weepy because his wife or girl friend forgot to give him a present on St. Valentine’s Day? Have you ever known a man who got depressed on St. Valentine’s Day because he didn’t have a steady girl friend to go out with? How many guys do you know who would really be insulted if they didn’t get a Valentine card?
There is nothing wrong in having gender-specific holidays. Women have Valentine’s Day just as men have their own special day in the year… like what? Oh yeah, Saint Patrick’s Day. On St. Valentine’s Day a woman goes out to dinner, gets presents, and maybe ends the evening having a romantic interlude with her sweetheart.  On St. Patrick’s Day a man goes out to a bar, gets wasted, and maybe ends the evening throwing up on his shoes.  You know, the guy holidays just don’t have that same romantic element to them.

…have ever heard of a man feeling all neglected and getting weepy because his wife or girl friend forgot to give him a present…

I remember Milton Berle saying that he liked to do things for his wife on Valentine’s Day—like holding the door for her when she puts laundry in the washing machine.  He also said that the only thing his wife wanted for Valentine’s Day was a card – an American Express card.
Valentine’s Day is an opportunity to express love and admiration for those special women in our lives who may not be our sweethearts, but are close in our hearts none the less. I always gave my mom and sister Valentine cards and candy. In elementary school I gave a favorite teacher a card too. And remember those childhood Valentines all the kids would exchange with sentiments like “You’ve got a winning smile… (open card) … “but a losing face!”
Happy St. Valentine’s Day to Dolores Hope and Phyllis Diller!  Rumor has it that for many years Phyllis Diller got together with Dolores Hope on a regular basis to play cards and drink martinis at the Hope residence in Toluca Lake. I heard about this quite awhile ago so it is quite possible that by now that little get-together doesn’t take place anymore, but I sure hope it does. It would be fascinating to be a fly on the wall in that room listening to the girls talk while they play and sip their cocktails. Gin martinis and gin rummy. Sounds just about right to me. Living well is the best revenge, as the saying goes. Cheers, ladies!
Happy St. Valentine’s Day to my precious sister, Debra. She doesn’t drink martinis but she has been known to play cards on occasion and she knows how to have a good time. She has been, and continues to be, the linchpin of our family. I love you, kiddo.
Happy St. Valentine’s Day to all the other women in my family, too. Happy Valentine’s Day to Sherry, to Lindsay, to Shirley, to Abbe, to Nancy, to Ashley, to Amanda, to Megan, to Hailey, and to Becky. May you all get lovely boxes of candy and never eat your hearts out.
Broadway columnist Earl Wilson used to refer to his wife as his “B.W.” (Beautiful Wife). Radio talk show host Hugh Hewitt refers to his wife as “the fetching Mrs. Hewitt.” Popeye called Olive his “sweet patootie.” I’d like to borrow all those sentiments, and in the case of my lovely wife, I’ll add a few of my own choice adjectives to the mix such as stunning, classy, and cute. So Happy St. Valentine’s Day to my very own sweet patootie, my always fetching, stunning, classy, cute B.W. Jane. Marrying well is the best revenge.

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