I am Doctor Curmudgeon® … a real, live practicing doctor who is often quite cranky about things going on in medicine and in the rest of the world.
And so I write and vent and yowl.
Last week, Valentine’s Day came under my irritableness and so I scribbled:
I open my computer, and I am plastered with ads, cajoling me to buy stuff for Valentine’s Day!
“Don’t forget your loved one.”
“Quickly, you can still get flowers in time for Valentine’s Day!”
“Don’t forget a giant six-foot-tall teddy bear for the one you love!”
‘We will be your cupid”
“Special romantic Valentine’s Dinner, only$150 per person, wine and a rose included!”
I am so cranky about this made-up, advertising-created, buy-needless-stuff holiday that I throw paper clips at my screen.
How did this insanity start?
Wasn’t it a pagan festival having something to do with fertility?
It is one of the more ridiculous of “holidays.” Buy something today and those you love will know you love them. Really? Shouldn’t you do nice things for those you care about all year? Not just one day.
And how on earth did that symbol represent a heart? I guess it does, in some obscure way. (Will have to check with my cardiologist partner on that one.)
In my gnarly, Chicago-born and -bred mind, when February 14 rolls around, I think of something else.
What, you ask?
Of course, it is the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre! What else!
Ah, I remember it well. February 14, 1929.
There were gang wars in my beloved city, and the most notorious was between Al Capone and Bugsy Moran. This massacre occurred when men dressed as law enforcement entered Moran’s main headquarters, lined up seven of his men and shot them.
That was Valentine’s Day in Chicago in 1929!
And for a couple of centuries, we have been acknowledging this day with cards, and hearts, and flowers and candy and teddy bears.
Here I am trying to vent my column and now I hear someone banging on my door. I, the curmudgeon of curmudgeons am not to be disturbed while writing…
What is it?
A huge, heart-shaped box filled with dark chocolate covered almonds and macadamia nuts.
Maybe it’s not such a bad holiday.
As long as there isn’t a gun in the second layer!
Doctor Curmudgeon® is a physician-satirist. This column originally appeared on SERMO, the leading global social network for doctors — the virtual doctors’ lounge and the home of medical crowdsourcing.