Manufactured Love


One day I’ll wake up and read a headline in the paper, shrug it off, and keep scanning for something important. The headline will read that at 3 P.M. Eastern Time, Hallmark was awarded an official patent by the United States Government for inventing love.

Love and appreciation now have retail prices. Ask anybody at DeBeers and they’ll tell you that a diamond is forever. What about love? I think most people see it as ephemeral because it’s not really worth any money.

Indeed, the best things in life are free. It’s the accidental fart on a first date, your friend spilling root beer all over the place, running into a sliding glass door in front of all of your friends, and knowing that you’d die for the ones you love and vice versa.

Problem is, the best things in America cost lots and lots of money. On a daily basis we are bombarded with greed, vanity and many other values that try to pry us away from the right path.

Holidays like Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Father’s Day are signs of a deeper problem. Americans have this need to justify their ignorance by overglorifying relatively unimportant things. Sports, expensive jewelry, ridiculous cars (like the H2) are just a few of the things we occupy ourselves with.

Not to say that having nice things and driving a nice car or watching sports is bad. I’d be a hypocritical asshole if I condemned all that completely — what I mean is that those things should be ancillary, not paramount. You can drive a nice car, etc., but don’t lose touch with those free things in life that are infinitely more important — like your friends, like your family, or what you believe in.

Much like other distractions, Hallmark holidays really hit me as a band-aid for a massive head wound. America has a huge gaping hole in the middle of itself, and it’s bleeding. We declare holidays, but don’t understand what they really mean. We invent new technology, but don’t know how to use it wisely. We have power and luxury but don’t know how to be responsible with it.

Maybe we need to slow down. Back to basics with America. How about loving our mothers everyday before feeling obligated to declare a holiday for them? Surely 365 is greater than 1. How about learning how to say meaningful words before buying devices that allow us to say whatever we want to whoever we want anytime we want? And diamonds? More often than not they are just another item to quantify during divorce proceedings.

Hallmark will never be able to patent anything in my life that a person can’t hold or place a price on. For that, I am grateful. I hope that 2 Sundays from now everybody will love their mothers just as much as they do tomorrow. Sometimes it’s fun to show how much you care on non-holidays too.