Two Days Late and Two Dollars Short

Jacopo da Ponte - St Valentine Baptizing St Lu...

Jacopo da Ponte – St Valentine Baptizing St Lucilla – WGA01452 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Saint Valentine, patron saint of love, lovers, beekeepers, epilepsy, fainting, plague, and travelers.  He was one busy dude.

Since this week included Valentine’s Day and I’m writing a romance, I was thinking about romance; the ways it can be defined, the different meanings, and how those representations have changed for me over the years.  Yeah, yeah, I’m a little late for a Valentine’s Day post.

I don’t remember thinking about romance or Valentine’s Day as a kid, certainly it wasn’t the standard it has become for each child to come to class with a card for each classmate and a candy stuck into each one.  I don’t remember it being in our home, either.  My parents were very practical people, something like buying a heart shaped box of chocolates  would have sent my father up on his political soap box to deliver a long, loud lecture–possibly pulling out the Encyclopedia Brittanica for back up and illustrations.  Not that he never bought my mother flowers or gifts (not regularly, but it happened), but the idea of being expected to do so because of a Saint, or worse, Hallmark, was just the type of thing to make his head explode.

Vinegar Valentine, circa 1900

Vinegar Valentine, circa 1900 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When I was a teenager, oh I loved all that shit.  Pretending I didn’t, of course.  But really, what teenaged girl doesn’t love gifts of chocolates, flowers, white teddy bears with red ribbons, maybe a splinter of a gold charm that must surely mean dedication, pledges of undying adoration from anonymous sources?  Trust me, they all love it, or some variation.  Vegan, hemp wearing girlfriend?  Organic fair trade chocolates.  Or maybe a bong with a rose painted on it, put Sugar Magnolia on the iPod.  Even the girls wearing thick black eyeliner to match flat-died black hair, wearing spikes around their neck.  Stick a black ribbon around the damned box, pierce the teddy bear’s tongue and they’ll be certain you really, truly “get” them.

Romance as an adult, though.  That changes.  And I’m not talking about secksy times.  It means different things to different people.  I focus on women because I’ve got girly bits.  I have to say one of the top three romantic moments I ever experienced with Husband was the first time he insisted I take my pants off so he could iron them.  Strange? Certainly.  But it represented something.  After eleventy billion years together, though, it isn’t quite the same moment.  I can identify and create romance inside my head that work for a manuscript, the off balance rush of hormones in overdrive and  falling in love.  Between Husband and I, we were never big on “traditional,” commercial romantic moments.  As life got busier and more complex, the untraditional romantic moments have gotten lost in the shuffle.  Maybe this is the stage where it would be nice to have the traditional, commercial moments acknowledged, if only to counteract the effects of SAD and sick kiddo.  I find myself wondering what romance means at this stage, with frenetic days of each of us running our separate wheels inside of one cage.  A bonus slice of carrot?  Fresh shavings?

I don’t know, but I’m also wondering if Flower Child will notice if I steal one of the chocolates from the box I bought her.  Probably not, so I won’t.

What does romance mean to you?

valentine!

valentine! (Photo credit: maximolly)

18 comments

  1. Secksy time…love it. Wash and wear clothing has taken all the romance out of the world. In a story I wrote long ago I had the woman tell her boyfriend that, “…the most romantic thing in the world is clean underwear…go do the laundry…”
    Two dollars short? I’ll send you 1,000 colones…same thing, only more colorful. Thanks.
    Later…

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    1. No, I don’t think it’s sad at all. And I do believe it means something completely different at different stages of our lives.

      If it weren’t for writing romance, I don’t think it would be on my radar. Well, that and a craving for chocolate. :D

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  2. Romance to me? We aren’t so much on traditional romance here, and don’t have much time or money for it either.

    If I had the choice… Chocolate, mmmm. Coffee, think of me with a good cup of coffee…. I love that. I much prefer enjoying flowers outside but would never tell him that. Taking that little bit of time to show he thinks of me when I’m not right in front of him. Consideration and certain types of manners and stuff we used to see as a matter of course way back when would still be nice now- would be even more appreciated on my part than the occasional chocolate or other physical gift. So I guess it’s a little things vs a big fancy affair like some go for.

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  3. Romance is like oxygen for my heart, it breathes the why and the meaning into the dull and the dreary. It’s life itself, I create romance at every opportunity, stashing away romantic memories and keepsakes to Tide my heart over till the next swoon :)

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  4. I am such a romantic, Breakfast at Tiffany’s kind of romance! I am a dreamer! My husband, not so much. He never even understood the whole card thing. We used to Celebrate pre-kiddies. I always do something for the kids. This year I got myself (hee hee) via groupon a really good Valentine’s gift, a day at the spa. It was such a good special, I couldn’t pass it up, I printed it and told my DH to give it to me. I was so pleased!! :D

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    1. I’m glad you’re going to get your spa day, not sure I’d count this under romance, though, lol!

      Man Child sent me a Happy Valentine’s Day text, and you know what? It was nice to receive, so yes! doing something for the kids is worth it too :)

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