Valentine’s, what’s not to love?

Valentine’s, what’s not to love? Let me count the ways:

No day off from work.


Drugstore seasonal aisles. If throwup were pink and red… oh, wait, throwup is pink and red.

Biting into a chocolate candy and having a confectioner’s peculiar concoction bite back at you.

Necco brand Sweetheart conversation hearts, with messages as bland as their taste. “Be mine”? How about “Let’s do this” or “How you like me now?” And get some new ink for the printer, Necco! The washed out look worked in a dot matrix world; today it screams “Grannie’s coffee table” in hi-def.

The loneliness of singles. The anxiety of husbands. The disappointment of wives.

The character that rhymes with stupid and other pudgy angels with wings.

Somewhere between Valentine’s founding to honor Christian martyrs and the Hallmark cable channel, we forgot that every time an angel appears in Scripture, “Don’t be afraid!” accompanies him.

Isn’t that just like us – and him who leads men astray? Take a day designed for the holy and make it earthly, carnal, about us and our rocky pursuit of ecstasy. We so want earthly romance to settle our restlessness and shorten our longings.

We take Valentines and give them. We try to make it last. Then life gets in the way, not to mention our hurts and pride, which has its roots in our hurts.

The most sense I’ve made of the back and forth we call love is this: At its best, it’s a reflection of a deep, triune togetherness forever sustained by mutual sacrifice. A relational warmth worth celebrating in the dead of winter.

Two can become one on Earth, as the three are, in fact, one in Heaven.


If you’re looking for a last-minute gift for a music lover, I’ll be your personal shopper.

My wife’s sister, Amy Stroup, has spent a decade in the Nashvegas songwriting scene. Her tunes have played on Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, Parenthood and a host of other TV shows.

Recently, Amy teamed with fellow singer/songwriter, Trent Dabbs, to form “Sugar + the Hi-lows.” Their album boasts a throwback mo-town R&B sound that may cause dancing or tambourine shaking. It is really good and available on iTunes starting today.

Huffington Post’s music critic called the project “the first sweet musical treat of 2012.” USA Today asserted, “The only thing better than the bluesy, garage-rock guitars is Trent Dabbs and Amy Stroup’s vocal chemistry.” In other words, perfect for Valentine’s.

If I weren’t related, I probably wouldn’t come across Sugar + the Hi-lows since I buy toothpaste more frequently than music. But if I happened upon the CD, say, left in a rental car, I’d listen to and like it.

There’s a reason Amy and Trent are presently opening for blues rock artist Marc Broussard on a 19-date tour.

If you buy, you can feel good about the people receiving the fruit of your labor. Both artists are former Texans, both committed to things that last, both more impressed with art than fame.

And if you get your friends to buy, I might get more than argyle socks from Amy this Christmas. I might just get a red argyle sweater.

Ahh, red sweaters: one last thing not to love about this day.

Kevin Thompson writes a weekly opinion column for The Boerne Star. Follow him at

1 Response to “Valentine’s, what’s not to love?”

  1. 1 jessestroup February 14, 2012 at 15:53

    Kevin, You are over the top with this article. I LOL’ed several times. And for those with ears to hear, you said a lot real love.
    I like your gift wrap.

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