It's a strange fact of Valentine's Day that most of us seem to participate out of a sense of obligation, yet there's no single entity holding us responsible for it — no Jesus, not even the U.S. government cares if we celebrate or not. Yet at face level, you'd think we'd all be onboard with a holiday that gives us a chance to tell someone we love them — a day when couples dutifully force busy schedules to converge, restaurants offer special menus and Starbucks offers two-for-one lattes for couples.
But that's not the case.
Everybody knows at least a handful of Valentines Day curmudgeons. You may even be that person — the one who feels they don't need a designated day to share their love with someone they care about. You may feel that EVERY day may as well be Valentine's Day.
We're sympathetic to the cause. So, we've racked our brains and put together the all-time greatest list of other days you might consider for your romantic expression:
Candy is very cheap on this day.
Still cheap, just slightly stale.
Like the song "I am sixteen, going on seventeen." Very romantic, especially if your Austrian royalty.
If you aren't, this might not be the day for you. Don't worry — there are others.
Honestly this one isn't so great. Tends to be a little cold. Still, it's serviceable.
Alright, there is something pretty wholesome and romantic about the number 22. Go all out on this one.
Two-month anniversary of Christmas. Will resonate for some.
ou What better way to bond, romantically, than to reflect on the strange fact that February only has 28 days? Pretty loveably idiosyncratic, just like someone else you know ...
You can start pretending it's spring.
A date that's also a command. Something special about that.
We all know what happened a month before this. And we must never speak of it again.
Monthiversary of the 17. Happy 17, everyone.
Now that I think of it, '22' isn't just wholesome — it's sort of a complex and multilayered sound. 22.
The Ides of March were 13 days ago. Should have told you that 13 days ago. Hopefully that turned out alright.
31 days. Pretty much the infinite month when compared with February which, if you recall, was last month.
Nothing goes together better than love and practical jokes. Like saying "I love you" to someone and then telling them you were just kidding. Even if you weren't.
Happy anniversary of the founding of the U.S. Mint thanks to the good old Coinage Act. Go crazy.
Marginally improved but still problematic.
Monthiversary of the 17th. Hold your loved one extra tight.
It's funny — there are other dates with repeated numbers (like 11) but it doesn't have the same euphony as 22.
Alright, a potentially loaded day. Tread lightly.
Three months in a row of different lengths. What are the odds.
Happy Beltane everyone. Celebrate driving your livestock out to pasture with a barefoot May day dance. Then watch as your date runs.
This might be spring dress day.
Again, 11 — it's no 22.
Alright, I'm not the only one who is hearing this. Twenty-two. Twenty. Two.
May 25th. 100 days after Valentine's Day. And still not far enough.
That was a great month.
I think the days have been getting longer. Make use of the additional light here.
Ralph Ellison's Juneteenth is a classic. Definitely worth a read. Especially if you're a literary couple. Even if you're not. Actually, especially if you're not.
likeFriday the 13th. This is a good chance to celebrate Halloween in June. Also a good chance not to leave the house.
Probably a good day to go running as a couple.
Happy 17th — may they all be as special as the first 17th.
Nothing to see here.
This is a month before my brother's birthday. That might not mean much to you. Actually, it might not mean much to him.
A day to appreciate the fact that we've been having normal-length months for awhile now.
Good day to break up and reconcile.
Any residual patching up you have to do after the 4th is probably best done here, because the 8th is crazy ...
Really not that crazy actually. It's more a state of mind — whatever you make of that.
Didn't even comment on it that time.
This is a special one, don't let it slip by too fast.
I think it's the consonance. T-wenty t-wo.
This is a 31 day month, so if you're getting sick of it you just need to suck it up.
Creator of Garfield born this day. I'd suggest some lasagna.
I got nothing.
And a good Lughnasadh to you.
Bittersweet — the end of summer is in sight.
I know it happened. The 14.
Gets me every time.
This one. This is the one.
I think we never really recover from that back-to-school dread. The end of August and the beginning of September will always hang heavily on any summer person's soul.
Kind of broke tone there — back to the task at hand.
This is a nostalgic one.
I'm giving you pearls.
YES. This is a good one.
Happy monthiversary of the 17th.
This is a good day to listen to David Bowie's Young Americans.
Look, I don't mean to insist on this. If you feel it, you feel it.
Christmas is coming, but definitely still awkwardly far away.
Bout to be autumn, pretty suddenly and beautifully.
ha yExcellent one.
Celebrate the anniversary of the first ever Atlantic Monthly by asking whether or not hook up culture has negatively affected your relationship.
Whoa, nearly forgot — happy belated 17th.
Alright — I'm done.
This is Thanksgiving — kind of like a quadruple date with your family.
Happy Advent. Don't step on this one's toes too much.
Jay-Z's birthday. Do with that what you will.
Friday the 13th, may want to skip.
Although who am I to deem certain Fridays unworthy of romance?
Are we really so shallow that a number can turn us against a day?
A day as deserving of love as, say, your December 16?
Shortest day of the year. But also the longest night. You know what that means ... you get to rest up because December 22nd is amazing.
Every one is a gift.
Taking the tree down can be romantic as well as painful.
This one is pretty excellent.
Happy New Year.
I'll be honest with you, this month sucks.
But you just have to tolerate it.
Frankly, I'm impressed you're still reading.
I can't believe it's been a month since the last 17th. Wow.
It strikes me that this could be a good profession.
Calendar making, that is.
Well, maybe for some.
Closing in on it.
T-minus one week.
There you have it. 364 days.