I was having a hard time explaining to my Darling Wife just how offensive Valentines Day is to me as a loving husband and a man. Finally I came up with this analogy, which only works because there is a certain flavor of American Indian and a certain amount of alcoholism in her family.
There is a holiday called
Drunk Indian Day. Most Indians are sober but they celebrate it anyway,
because they feel social pressure to do so. Celebration consists of (at
least) buying a stupid little stereotypical-Indian doll with a bottle
in its hand and its eyes crossed. This is the Drunk Indian doll.
Purchasing one of these dolls and presenting it to an Alcoholics
Anonymous meeting is the way you show that you are not, in fact, a
Nevermind that you are the co-ordinator of the local
Alcoholics Anonymous chapter and a teetotaler and everyone knows it. IF
you don't buy that little Drunk Indian dolly, well that just means
you're a drunk and probably spent last night in the gutter in your own
vomit, instead of at the store buying the doll! It is, after all,
exptected that you buy the doll to celebrate your sobriety.
works equally well for Crackhead Niggers Day, where you have to go find
a small bag of quartz pebbles and present them in a little tiny plastic
baggie, to PROVE to society that you are not, in fact, a crackhead
This also works for Wifebeatin' Redneck Honky day, where
you have to go buy a white muscle shirt and a pack of band-aids to prove
you don't beat your wife.
The point is, to make the analogy work
for the woman to whom you are trying to explain it, you have to have a
really strong, very negative stereotype of some group to which they are
proud to belong. Then have some useless commercial activity and a
meaningless presentation to "prove" that you do not live up to the
stereotype and then have it be "Oh . . . WELL. . . " if you fail to participate in
Finally I think I broke through her
childhood conditioning regarding Valentines Day. The thing is, I don't
*mind* getting her flowers or whatever on one specified day! The
*expectation* and the *demand* that I produce them, THAT's the problem.