Weekend Diversion: Valentine’s Day!

It says ‘I Choo-choo-choose You,’ and there’s a picture of a train! -Ralph Wiggum

Ahh, Valentine’s Day. What do you think of when you think of it? Do you think of a sweet sentiment about someone dear to you? (Song credit: If I Could by Storyhill.)

Do you maybe think of the vast commercialization of some very minor historical event?

While that’s the part of Valentine’s Day that I like the least, I’ll be celebrating it anyway, and I think it’s a good idea. Why?

It’s pretty much the middle of winter across the U.S., Canada, Europe, and a good chunk of Asia. The days are short, the weather is cold, and most of us wake up to darkness and come home from work to darkness. It’s a difficult time of year in a lot of ways.

And it isn’t just you; the people dearest to you are living through the same dreary times. Valentine’s Day is a reminder to me to take some time and energy and appreciate the people who are most important to you, and to do it even during the most trying of times. How to do it?

That depends on the person you have in mind. Everyone likes different things, so make sure you choose things that the person you have in mind will appreciate.

Why? Because one of the greatest gifts you can give to someone you care about is helping them feel that they’re not in this adventure alone. Don’t just tell them how you feel about them, do something — even if it’s something small and inexpensive — to show them that you value and appreciate them.

(And if you really hate Valentine’s Day, don’t do it today, but do it, and soon.)

What’s in it for you? If there’s nothing else in it for you at all, you’ll get to see someone you love smile. It’s important to let them know that they’re important. So that’s what I’ll be doing this Valentine’s Day, and I hope whatever it is you choose to do today, you have a great one!


  1. #1 DataJack
    February 14, 2010

    Very sweet of you, Ethan. Happy Valentine’s day to you and your loved ones.

  2. #2 MadScientist
    February 14, 2010

    I’ve always railed against these “love your parents on one day of the year only, and don’t forget to buy a Hallmark (TM) card” and similar things. It enrages me that people would think one day is more special somehow. Mooo! Baaaaa! The really sad thing is that there are many people out there who genuinely believe that if you don’t act like the sheep, you don’t really love them. Seriously – you can give them a mansion on 13 Feb and on 14 Feb you don’t love them because you didn’t do anything for them on valentine’s day.

  3. #3 ThirtyFiveUp
    February 14, 2010

    Nice photos, and here is some more mush from a daily lurker.


  4. #4 maopo
    February 4, 2011

    Whilst the ever improving images of Saturn are great theres something really special seeing the planet through your own telescope (even if it is a small one that doesn’t get used much anymore!!).i-tunes

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