Crystal Tellez-Giron, Staff Writer
In exclusive relationships, from long term to long distance, there’s a special day for celebrating your significant other aside from Valentine’s Day. In matters of romance, some of us dread, are indifferent to or look forward to this hyped up event for varying reasons. The mark- ings on your calendar signify the day you and your significant other officially became a couple — your anniversary.
How could you possibly dread a celebration dedicated to the person you’ve been spending weeks, months or years with? For us girls, it’s no secret sometimes we just don’t have the slightest clue what to get him.In either case, there’s a bit of excitement and wishful thinking for the girl who hopes to be treated like a princess and the guy who wants to feel like Han Solo by the end of the night. Liberal studies student Crystal Bonilla, who’s been married to her husband for more than a year, admits it can be a little nerve racking.
“If he’s the one planning some- thing, then I get a little anxious because I’m trying to figure out what I can do to surprise him,” she says. “It’s always a lot more work to surprise a guy than a girl.” Leave it to romantic com- edies and pop songs to raise our already instilled hallmark-experi- ence expectations. Let’s be honest with ourselves ladies. It doesn’t matter how indifferent you are to mushy displays of affection, if you think “Titanic” is the worst romantic movie of all time, or if you don’t turn up the volume at the first note of your favorite in- sert cheesy pop song. So if your boyfriend sends a dozen red roses to your work with a hand written love letter, you’d automatically feel like Allie from “The Notebook.”
When it comes to celebrating anniversaries, from my obser- vations, there are four types of lovebirds: the weekly, monthly, halftime and yearly couples. To happily married couples, it’s a day to look forward to. “It’s like a birthday,” Bonilla says. “You celebrate it with your significant other and do something nice to symbolize another year spent together.” Bonilla prefers to celebrate her anniversary at the half year point. “I like half marks because it just sounds more impor- tant versus the 2nd month or 7th month,” she explains.
“I don’t see the point,” SDSU media studies student Jennifer Romero says. She thinks celebrating anniversaries too often is a waste of time early on in a relationship because sometimes spring flings and summer romances just don’t last. “You celebrate a lot of things throughout the year anyways — birthdays, Valentine’s Day and Christmas,” says Romero. She also admits that even though she’s not the affectionate type, it’s the little things that count most when celebrating an anniversary. “I prefer celebrating yearly anniversaries and doing adventurous things like hiking or scuba diving,” Romero added. “It should be a fun day spent acknowledging each other.”
The couples celebrating monthly anniversaries are in the getting- to-know-each-other stage and in the process of writing down a laundry list of do’s and don’ts in the relationship. At the same time, they’re emptying out their wallets for an investment, which might not reap any benefits in the long run. “If I celebrated every month with my significant other, then I’d be broke,” Romero says.
Then there is the excessively festive couple that, for whatever reason, celebrates weekly anniver- saries. “I’ve always thought that was lame, but I did that with my high school sweetheart.” Bonilla says. ”I see that as high school stuff, but as adults, I don’t think it’s necessary to do that.” So, how often should you celebrate an an- niversary?
For couples that aren’t serious yet, there should exist an anniver- sary time boundary that doesn’t necessarily have to be avoided, but could be wishy-washy playing if crossed. For instance, if you’re barely getting to know someone, why take the time to celebrate a relationship without reaching a serious landmark? If a relation- ship doesn’t last a year, then there shouldn’t be too much to celebrate. Preferably, I’d choose to celebrate anniversaries on a yearly basis, or perhaps at the half-year mark. If you think about it, “you can show affection for your boyfriend any day of the year,” Romero advises.
Eric Dobko, Staff Writer
“How often should couples celebrate anniversaries?” I was asked. To answer this, I realized it was essential for me to first decide on a distinct system of time. We Westerners are quite accustomed to our system of seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months and years. I understand the correlation of a year’s time with a revolution of the Earth around the sun, and of a month with the moon, but some of it seems a bit arbitrary. Who came up with a week anyway and why are they seven days long? Seems like a cultural construction to me, something society merely adopted at a young, feeble age of impressionability. Further- more, what do astronomical bodies like the sun and mooneven have to do with time? Just because I produce bowel movements in consistent intervals doesn’t mean we should devise a calendar from them.
When describing how often he celebrates anniversaries, history major David Koski said, “In my last relationship, we celebrated our anniversaries in ascending prime numbers of days since our first date. Anniversary #73 was one that in my mind really sets itself apart from the others… although anniversary #197 was particularly steamy as well.”
It became clear how questions regarding love could not be answered using the fictitious models of time designed by man. Our temporal perceptions must be dropped altogether and we must learn to celebrate our love with every moment we are given. Any time spent with your partner in which you are not celebrating that blissful bond of devotion is time of you have squandered.
Returning to our dreadful Western convention of time for the sake of argument, I’ll give my critique of those traditional “anniversarists.” Those who say a relationship should only be celebrated annually give me an irrepressible feeling of nausea. By saying every year you and your partner will celebrate your relationship, you are simultaneously not celebrating those days in between anniversaries. What do you do for the other 364 days of the year? Do you just neglect your intimacy until the next anniversary comes up? If you can appreciate your lover to a greater extent on a particular day of the year, then why not schedule an anniversary every day, on every minute, or every instant? The idea that you’d just settle for romantic mediocrity in the meantime seems quite rude toward your partner.
In an interview, SDSU anthropology alumnus Mike Grone gave me his view on anniversaries.
“Each passing moment is intrinsically sacred, a transient flicker that holds the entirety of our cosmic relationship. Truth is love, and love is eternal. That said, attempting to relegate celebrating the passion and inspiration that blossoms from the interweaving of your soul with another to an isolated date is missing the essence. If love is an everlasting and perpetual force it should be celebrated as such. The fire burning like an endless sun and the glimmer in your eyes reflecting a timeless and self-sustaining spark. I treat each morning as an anniversary, when dreamers reunite and begin the day as one. Stop waiting to love each other and hiding behind fear, the anniversary is now.”
Switching gears here, I mean it when I say I firmly believe love is the force that brought us all into existence. Your parents’ passion and devotion is what created your vacuous little cabbage head. It’s our creator – not just some feeling that makes us all warm and fuzzy inside, filling our stomachs with metaphorical butterflies. John Lennon could not have said it better than in the song “Tomorrow Never Knows” when he sang, “Love is all and love is everyone… it is knowing, it is knowing.” And it knows all right – it doesn’t look too highly on those lengthy gaps between your anniversaries.
So to answer my own question, I conclude anniversary celebrations imply that there must also be times when the flame of romance is extinguished, thereby threatening a courtship’s true potential. The tradition of commemorating anniversaries should be phased out once and for all, so that couples around the world may forever revel in the sacred, immortal essence we call love.