The whims of love send whitewater rapids along the rivers that flow through the veins of my heart, pounding a primal drum beat that threatens to excite all my calm common sense into a violent sea of insanity.

Yes, I’m talking Cupid’s quivers and heart-to-heart nonsense. Valentine’s is still days away and just after sweeping out the last holiday decorations, I’m ready to jump into another celebration of sorts. I notice that more and more amore is more evident everywhere. Fields of red adorn every commercially available space, wooing you with sweet chocolate surprises and a bewildering variety of goods to satisfy other strong appetites.

C’est l’amour. Sometimes you wish it lasted year round; especially when reality sets in the day after as you’re suffering from a love hangover and commitments are hard promises to break. Ooo la la, a problem eh?

Back to reality, is the honeymoon over yet? We as a people have been married to the constitution for three decades now (albeit in an alternative lifestyle with two other partners), but these days, anything goes. Like the sweet, picture-perfect wedding it became, other designers could never copy our gowns or tuxes, much to the delight of the designers, who created their own trademarked corporations.

After kicking in the door and two-and-a-half decades of wrestling, the suits and gowns came off and the bickering began. Like they say, love hurts. Soon the bride was offered a diamond to pay off the promised dowry, and a second honeymoon was hastily planned. Since it was the second time around and with the kids all grown up and able to pitch in with their new world savvy and education, it was a breeze. The prenuptials were coming true, except for the third party to the threesome, who hasn’t declared anything and is jealously guarding his distance. Perhaps he’s just shy and needs some coaxing.

At a personal level, it seems that Valentines do leave their lethal mark when applied unwittingly. They can spur great emotional upheavals that scar you forever. Such a thing happened to me, at the tender age of nine.

I made a Valentine at home for my Grade 3 teacher, who happened to be a great person, by the way. I shyly gave it to her and she just flipped. I, not really knowing what was happening, suddenly became terrified of her and ran away out of the class. She chased me from class to class and finally caught me and planted a big wet kiss on my squirming cheeks in front of all the other kids.

I’m still embarrassed. Valentines is a dangerous time for the unknowing, so take care and don’t hurt yourselves in the process. Remember that good intentions are just that, good intentions. The real danger is in how they are perceived by the recipient of your good intentions.

Creating an atmosphere that relationships can thrive in is really just a lot of hard work and compromise. After a while, the comfort level sets in and life becomes more than just living. Valentine’s Day just reminds us of that aspect, with a dash of spice, any relationship seems like a new one, at least just for a day.

On the practical side for Romeos both young and old, however, remember that love is just another word for latex. So don the glove, just in case love gets a hold of you.