Thursday, February 15, 2007

Happy V-day

It is that time of the year when marketers go the whole hog.
Taget-1: Teenagers. Target-2: Media-dazed Gen-X.
Taget-3: All and Sundry.
The tempo reaches a frenzied pitch just a few days before the actual V-day. It is almost maddening on 2/14. Every passing year, the carnival gets noisier. Columnist David Bach puts it rather discreetly, ‘Is Valentine's Day about love or money?’ My heart tells me it should be about love and appreciation for those who matter most to us, but facts show that Valentine's Day is truly big business. Restaurants and café’s are crammed full, flowers cost you a fortune and gift stores stack everything your heart may desire. And your wallet can afford. Frankly, it has just been reduced to pink balloons, ridiculously-prized cards and collective public display of emotions. An advertiser’s true delight. No wonder all the RJ’s – at all the FM stations – playing in my car croon just one theme: It is V-day, v-day. Overwhelm them, lest they forget!

I don't understand why Cupid was chosen to represent Valentine's Day. When I think about romance, the last thing on my mind is a short, chubby toddler coming at me with a weapon. As an aside, I am not per se a V-day scrooge. I like it – when there is a lot of love around. But does it have to be so blasé. So shallow. So ostentatious. Do we need to market emotions like we the way we handle any detergent? Is it sensible to plaster ‘I love u honey’, over newspaper broadsheets and ever-soppy TV channels? Whatever happened to thoughtfulness? Sanity? Real emotions? If you love someone, you simply love him-her. Period. I think it is more important to be sensitive to each others feelings, rather than getting carried away by market forces. En masse. The forces will never care to explain: You don't love someone for their color, or their clothes, or for their fancy car, but because they sing a song only you can hear.

It takes more then lace and ribbons. And lovely verses too to make a Valentine that is nice enough for you. It takes a world of special thoughts tucked into every thought and that is exactly what must be inside of our hearts! I reckon there is nothing wrong with people going out on this day. Holding hands. Buying boxes and stuffed hearts and deodorants for one another. Or eating heart-shaped cakes together. Drinking a few beers, after having to wait outside a bar for many valuable hours. Giggle. For all to see. That’s when -- according to some -- the feelings come a full circle, as it leaves nothing to imagination.

We forget however that love is a canvas pattern furnished by Nature, and embroidered by imagination. Happy V-day.



Janaki, Mumbai said...

I am delighted to read you here. Love has really got killed by lust.

Janaki, Mumbai

Anil K Jha, Ranchi said...

It is a western marketing gimmick, which has been picked up shamelessly by Indian advertisers.
Love is an eternal feeling, no single day can represent it.

Dr Anil K Jha

Martin, 29, Venice said...

It is a beautiful festival but it is unfortunate that it has so shoddily been taken over by market driven forces, diamond companies etc.

very nice piece

Hilol, 32, New Delhi said...

ah -- marvellous.
You too good, man.


Meghna, Hindustan Times said...

I love reading you. I may not agree with u always but I love the way you write.

meghna, 34

Anonymous said...

well, i guess in todays age & day really does not exist!!