Stupid Cupid stop shooting at me!
Dodging the arrows on Vul-entine's Day:
V-Day has ended. And the cash registers were jingling incessantly
throughout the whole of last week. For days tainted by commercialism
Valentine's Day gives Christmas a run for the money - big money. It is
heralded with a surfeit of marketing initiatives by clever companies to
cash in on the general emotional stupidity on display. That is why on
V-Day you observe a lot of people walking around feeling giddy and full
But when it comes, a great many of us had better get ready to run.
That is because Cupid's arrows have been known to have caused mischief
and mayhem from the time his darts drove Daphne away from Apollo.
Yes, Stupid Cupid often gets it wrong, or worse, is malicious. His
arrows are weapons and he sometimes uses them cruelly. In this day and
age he terrorises a good many hearts. Still some people say: If only
Cupid would re-arm and update his weaponry with no strings attached.
Someone suggested that instead of a bow and arrow, he should be equipped
with a semi-automatic weapon.
With a real weapon, the puckish son of Venus could bar adults - and
by adults I mean parents and teachers - from making children swap
Valentines. What the heck are they trying to do with these very small
kids? Aiming to churn out whole generations of 'Valen-teenies'.
Besides, think about the incurably romantic oldsters? They would be
spared a world day of grief when they are pierced broadside and the
feelings are un-mutually one-sided? Sometimes plot does not always race
at a pace that suggests love is just about the only force that keeps the
universe moving with ever-palpitating geriatric hearts.
But then again the arrow picked from his frivolous quiver may not be
the appropriate one. To be sure the missile does not always keep to the
straight and narrow path. It flies awry often. To add to the confusion
the chubby, cherubic imp does not always hit dead centre. I suspect
sometimes it is because Cupid likes to use certain people as target
practice. To be sure of hitting the target, he shoots first and calls
whatever he hits the target. But do not make the mistake of advising the
ornery little archer to improve his archery skills because he will turn
around and fire back smugly: "If practice makes perfect, and nobody's
perfect, why practice?
So it is that time of year again. Love is in the air, romance begins
to settle over everything like a thick blanket of Nuwara Eliya frost,
and we are all forced to wade through knee-deep images of hearts,
flowers and chocolates.
All the while, many of us are ducking and dodging the arrows from
Cupid's bow. Personally, I think this kid dressed only in a diaper,
flying around blindfolded and shooting arrows at folks, is just plain
dangerous. Oh sure, it may seem like fun and games, until somebody gets
an eye or both eyes put out! And then everybody invariably spews out the
hackneyed cliché that 'love is blind'.
What is Valentine's Day and exactly what are we celebrating? I did
some research and came up with several fascinating facts about this
special day, most of which I quickly discarded, and then fabricated much
of the stuff in this column.
Many different legends surround this special day we celebrate in
honour of the patron saint of romance, a third century Roman martyr
According to legend, Valentine was a priest in ancient Rome. He was
executed by the Roman Emperor, Claudius II, for running around in a
diaper while shooting sharp objects at people. No, wait a minute, Cupid
does that. Sorry, I will get down to changing only Cupid's diaper.
Although the truth behind the Valentine legends is questionable, the
stories certainly emphasise his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic, and,
most importantly, a romantic figure.
Anyway to get on with it, the misinformed Emperor Claudius, felt that
married soldiers were not as ill-tempered, brainwashed and eager to do
battle as the unmarried soldiers. Which just goes to show how little he
knew about husbands. Closer home a fat-faced mutton-eating fanatic named
Velupillai Prabahakaran took a leaf from Claudius' book and outlawed
marriage completely for all his young fighters. Yes, 'yaar,' he actually
did, until he himself was smitten by Cupid and flouted his own
anti-marriage decree. I am only hazarding a guess here but I suppose
both tyrants would have had to answer the question from their fighting
male cadres whether they could marry their girlfriends and not one
But St.Val being a hopeless romantic and realising the injustice of
the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages in secret
for young lovers. When Valentine's actions were discovered, Claudius
ordered that he be put to death. Valentine was beheaded, which may have
brought about the adage 'head over heels in love.'
It happened to my good-looking friend Robbie who was infatuated by a
not-so desirable wench named Hazel. She certainly did have a striking
resemblance to a chappie named Frankenstein. His cruel friends made up a
canard that Robbie had popped this question to her: "Will you be my
And there was our long-time associate Percival with his porcine looks
and pig-sty morals, who we nicknamed Vul-Percy. He gifted a lovely lass
he fancied a heart-shaped box of chocolates on V-Day which she refused
to accept. Worse still was her acerbic comeback: "Sorry Percy, but I
decline being your Vul-entine. Besides I did not realise it was Valen-swine's