This week's theme here at Star-Crossed is Valentine's Day. Traditionally, V-Day has been a high time in the world of romantic fiction, as no other holiday celebrates romance so directly, and so much the way some of us really like it--with tasty chocolate and fine jewelry. :P
Seriously, I am not that big a fan of fine jewelry--when Mr. Xandra was fixing to propose, he asked me what stone and setting I'd like in an engagement ring, and I told him a Pentium in a silicon setting with a square-cut, 102-key accent offset by an ergonomic oval cabochon, all surmounted with a true-color cubic cathode ray tube. Mr. Xandra had to call the jewelry store to find out what a cabochon was and what square-cut looked like, but he knew where to find the Pentium, and that's where I wrote my first full-length novel, where we both had many happy playthroughs of Full Throttle (a Lucasarts adventure RPG classic), and where we constructed some of our earliest dynasties of Civilization (Sid Meier's, that is).
Valentine's day is the one day (okay, season, judging by the two-week inundation of commercials for the local naughty stores, the full-service spas, and the jewelry store marketing blitzkrieg ordering you to celebrate her love with the addition of many pounds of precious stones to her appendages) where romance is acknowledged by the mainstream media, where romance writers are let out of our pink ghetto to do the morning radio show rounds about spicing up your love life, and which shade of pink best screams "romantic."
Me, I want to see something more. I want to see socially-conscious people taking to the streets on St. Val's day in full protest mode to say that Yes, Love is a worthwhile pursuit. That wishing for a happy ending isn't a sign of early-onset dementia, and that celebrating love is a damn fine reason for a party. So much of this world is a dystopia that celebrating something that makes people happy should not only exist, it should be mandatory. I want to see love in its funky forms. The matching collars for Lycanthropes with little heart-shaped studs. The His'n'Hers toasting glasses that have little warmers in them to keep the Blood Which Is The Life at a toasty 98.6. The shelves of "Sexy Grimoire" gift books with sexual enhancement enchantments sold in the local occult gateway. And the spiffed up audio cards that say "I Love You" in five human languages, Klingon, and Wookiee, complimentary on your spaceflight to the romantic getaway destination of the Lagoon Nebula.