Monday, February 6, 2012

Valentine's Day Commercialism at Its Most WTFness

Ever since I returned back to the United States, the thing that has been the most apparent to me is that this country's stores are the champions at premature marketing. The themed products are seen at the "wrong" time of the year, be it hocking Christmas decorations in October or, more recently, pink heart-shaped boxes of chocolate reminding of my current state of singlehood since January first.

(Just to be clear: I've been single since December, not January first.)

This is a stark contrast from what I have observed in France, meaning the French are quite normal and make an effort to limit each festivity within their designated months, and I must admit that I quite prefer the French way of commercialism; it's less annoying.

If I see one more sappy "Every Kiss Begins with Kay" jewelry ad showing a pair of actors emulating a happy, much-in-love couple, I'm gonna go ballistic on my TV, and I can't afford a new TV set these days.

Bitterness aside, I found myself on a trip to Target this past Saturday and I couldn't resist walking by the aisles (plural) that were dedicated to selling Valentine's Day trinkets. I saw the run-of-the-mill products: boxes of chocolates, stuffed animals, bags of chocolates, bottles of wine and champagne, bars of chocolate, candles, candies, party favors, paper plates, pencils, Valentine cards that elementary school kids pass out to their classmates bearing famous cartoon characters, and chocolate roses.

However, there was one item that caught me off guard and essentially touched me on levels that were wrong.






My friends, this year, why don't you say "I love you" to your significant other with a black heart sporting a bedazzled Darth Vader?

This is worth repeating: a black heart sporting a bedazzled Darth Vader.

Don't his brilliant sparkles strike absolute terror into your heart?

Some things are never supposed to be mixed. I can withstand seeing the pink hearts, but this honestly has gone way too far. In the name of all that is The Force, you CANNOT do this to Darth Vader.

Or Darth Maul, for that matter.


I expect Kay Jewelers will offer selling diamond-encrusted light sabers for Valentine's day next year, and they will glow neon pink when you turn them on. There is no doubt a market out there for them.

Barb the French Bean


  1. If any Star Wars character should be a spokesman for Valentines, it should be Han Solo, or Lando.
    On a more serious note, I'm with you on the commercialism thing. Valentine's day often seems like a cruel taunt to us single folks, doesn't it?

  2. You should got to Dragon*Con with Quanta, Randomicity, and me this year! You can beat Kay Jewelers to the punch and sell those neon pink diamond encrusted lightsabers yourself! You know you'd make a mint there. ;)

  3. Dave: Han Solo has probably been milked enough in the past with the paper Valentine's Day cards, and he'd be pretty hard to bedazzle on a heart. :P

    And, yeah, being single this time of the year only makes me want to buy a box of chocolates. I mean, they ARE there.

    Cindy: You're welcome. ^.^

    Shep: That sounds like a great idea! Only problem is that I first gotta find a diamond mine so I can make the lightsabers. :P


  4. Haha I think we really do think alike! I was thinking to myself that if I see another damn Kay Jewelers commercial, I would throw the TV out the window.

    On another note, being a Star Wars fan and all...I would so buy the light saber jewelry!! but it has to glow blue...

    and since when does Darth Vader celebrate Valentines?? I bet the chocolates taste nasty...I'm surprised they don't have a Voldemort heart shaped box this year :p


  5. Hahah I have not seen those. The nice thing about a long-term relationship is we've long since given up caring about that crap and instead just cook dinner together or something. That being said, I LOVE the after-Valentines sale when I can stock up on enough chocolate covered cherries to last me until none of my clothes fit anymore. Mmmm February 15...

  6. It's the same with Germany, they tend to start really early, although for some weird reason no one goes over the top at valentines. Maybe because they are the romantically challenged - watching Germans tying to be romantic is akward (No offense intended). Enough bashing though. 4 years with my man and we always manage to be apart on Valentines so the day is pretty much like any other for me....

    Really funny post! Thaks for stopping by my blog. Do come back :)

  7. We ignore it. Hallmark holiday. One year we BOTH forgot my birthday. Sad.

  8. HA!! LOVE THIS. AAANNND - I know someone who agrees with you!!...

  9. Hanny: I suddenly feel inspired to make a Valentine Voldemort cartoon. Maybe I can make a bedazzled Death Eaters symbol, too!

    Heather: Good strategy. I'll take a leaf out of your book because I tend to be quite an impulsive buyer. I'd better hold out for a few more days before I amass my treats; it'll make the victory so much sweeter.

    Mik: I remember receiving a German chocolate bear for Christmas one year, so I would have thought that another choco-centered holiday would have been a big thing. o_O

    Loonysuse: Ouch. You must have been really busy to have forgotten something like that. Make sure it doesn't happen again!

    Anonymous: Hee hee! I quite liked that post!


  10. But still the question remains. Who gave chocolates first; Han or Greedo?

    Yes... I am that much of a nerd.

  11. Stu: I guess we'll have to see a remastered version of the event to find out! Maybe they ended up sending the chocolates at the same time, but Greedo's box went to the incorrect location. :P

    (Nerds unite!)


  12. Le sigh. Like Heather, I'm just waiting for the chocolate sales.


Apparently, leaving comments on this blog is a hit-or-miss game of Russian roulette: you are either lucky and can comment away, or you are required to log in when the settings are CLEARLY set to allow trouble-free commenting (sorry 'bout that, folks). If anything, the Facebook page is always a viable option. :) -Barb