Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Lupercalia to you and yours

From an article at Wikipedia...
In Ancient Rome, the day of February 15 was Lupercalia, the festival of Lupercus, the god of fertility, who was represented as half-naked and dressed in goat skins. As part of the purification ritual, the priests of Lupercus would sacrifice goats to the god, and after drinking wine, they would run through the streets of Rome holding pieces of the goat skin above their heads, touching anyone they met. Young women especially would come forth voluntarily for the occasion, in the belief that being so touched would render them fruitful and bring easy childbirth.
Years later the Christians would come to associate this holiday with someone named Saint Valentine - though nobody is sure which of the three Valentines it's supposed to be - "cleaning it up" in the process and turning it into a wholesome celebration of love without the need to sacrifice a goat.

Here's something that's grown on me in the past few years: why do we need a holiday like St. Valentine's Day? I mean, love is something you're supposed to share with that special person every day of the year. Real love doesn't need a "reminder" like Valentine's Day to keep it fresh and renewed. Do we really need to spend countless millions of dollars on cards and candy and gifts to give to our loved ones just because bigtime commecialism expects us to?

Well, just something to think about. And call me odd but when I think of Valentine's Day, this is what usually comes to my mind the most...


The Saint Valentine's Day Massacre, Chicago 1929

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