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I’m going to be completely honest.
I’ve never been crazy about Valentine’s Day.
I always thought it was a cheesy holiday that gave those in relationships the excuse to post obnoxious Instagram captions about their significant others. Back in the day, it was considered by bitter singles a “Hallmark holiday,” and, now, with the rise of social media and the obsession with sharing a highlight reel of our lives with the rest of the world, Valentine’s Day has become more accurately christened, “Singles Awareness Day.”
On this fateful day, singles cannot escape an unending feed of humblebrags: roses captioned “flowers from bae,” “wouldn’t trade her for the world,” equally overused clichés, and happy couples doing cute, happy couple things.
As if the holidays weren’t bad enough, throwing engagements in our faces every time we opened Facebook or Instagram (my best friend and I started a drinking game, taking a shot for every diamond ring—not a good idea), we’re now bombarded with pictures of sushi dates, ridiculous stuffed teddy bears, bouquets of roses, and boxes of chocolates (which, by the way, are never the kind of chocolate you actually want).
However, now that I am one half of an annoyingly happy couple—I get it. I understand what it’s like to want to show everyone how happy I am, to let my friends, family, and mere acquaintances know how special this man is to me.
But guess what? Love isn’t about sharing via a public forum.
Sure, he or she might see what you wrote and smile for a moment, kiss you on the cheek, and experience a fleeting sense of pride. But that moment passes. Love is given and felt through spoken declarations, sense of touch, time spent together, loyalty, and gifts. Not one of the “five love languages” alludes to sharing your feelings with anyone other than your significant other.
Whether you are spending the night with your valentine or your besties, let’s turn social off. Rather than checking Snapchat to make sure your crush saw your story or refreshing Instagram to calculate your like to follower ratio, let’s face our phones down on the couch and get ready for some serious V-day snuggling.
Since nothing is better than being the recipient of a beautiful bouquet of eco, local flowers (call it cheesy, but you can’t deny the warm and fuzzies), I’d like to suggest a few rom-com and flower pairings for your night in.
1. “13 Going on 30.” Remember that sweet lace-up lingerie-esque top and matching rose necklace Jenna wore sitting on a park bench? Or the teal and green floral dress with the ballerina pink ribbon in her hair? What about the gaudy, sparkling butterfly necklace she somehow pulls off at the work party where she killed it on the dance floor? “13 Going on 30” is full of nature-inspired motifs and youthful trends, which is why the movie deserves to be accompanied with a just as cheerful flower. Pair it with a bouquet of daisies.
2. “Crazy, Rich Asians.” Full exposure: I have not seen all of these movies. While I have read “Crazy, Rich Asians” (the book was fabulous) and have been meaning to watch the movie, I have not yet gotten the chance to do so. However, if this movie is your sweetie’s favorite, I highly recommend the tan hua, the flower whose quick, sporadic bloom inspired a last minute party in the novel. Also known as the queen of the night, the romantic flower only blooms with the parting of the sun and will die again once the morning arrives.
3. “50 First Dates.” It would only be fitting to spend a night watching “50 First Dates,” which is set in Hawaii, with a vase full of Hawaiian flowers. The plumeria is a symbol of devotion, a theme that could not better represent Henry’s love and affection for Lucy.
4. “While You Were Sleeping.” What can’t Sandra Bullock do? In this beloved rom-com, Lucy (Bullock) saves the man she thinks she’s in love with from an incoming train. Despite her bravery, she is too afraid of losing the family to tell them the truth—that she’s not the man’s fiancé. Relax with this silly, ironic tale and a bouquet of protea flowers, a symbol of courage.
5. “27 Dresses.” In my totally impartial opinion, any list of rom-coms is incomplete without “27 Dresses.” Watch Jane jump from wedding to wedding while admiring your gorgeous blooms. Choose a flower that Jane would wear as a tacky hair accessory, like a neon yellow lily or an oversized coral-dyed rose.
6. “Singin’ in the Rain.” Hybrid arrangements were all the rage in the 50s. If your beloved is a fan of older movies, create a bouquet of assorted buds, mixing textures and colors, shapes, and petals. “Singin’ in the Rain“ is the perfect embodiment of the technology, cinematic culture, and fashions of the time period. Its floral counterpart should adhere to its irresistibly corny flair.
7. “16 Candles.” I cannot thank my mother enough for introducing me to the 80s cult classics. Jake Ryan is still, by far, the most charming heartthrob of all time. A V-day celebrated with this movie should be supplemented with a primrose, a flower representing young love.
8. “My Best Friend’s Wedding.” A convoluted twist of events, “My Best Friend’s Wedding” was made for the drama seekers, the ones who occasionally like to cheer on the bad guys or, at least, sympathize with them. Give your valentine hibiscus flowers, signifying sympathy but exuding vibrancy and life, if you’re watching this movie for the holiday.
9. “Funny Face.” Who doesn’t love a movie featuring the gorgeous, charismatic Audrey Hepburn? Especially someone intrigued by the always-changing world of fashion, like myself. The bookstore associate turned model wears an assortment of avant-garde designs by Edith Head. Your fashion-obsessed lady friend wants the trendiest flower of the moment. Choose a peony or even a succulent.
Happy Valentine’s, all of you!