|Here we go again with "Anti VD"
Valentine's Day last year, I wrote a column entitled
"No need for singles to protest Valentine's Day." I
criticized one entrepreneur who was trying to capitalize on
anti-couples sentiment that some single people have by
entire line of "Anti VD" goodies, from greeting cards, to post
cards, to hats and tee shirts.
are still relatively small in number -- compared to those who
market to people who do celebrate Valentine's Day -- several
more anti-valentine promoters have surfaced this year.
Greetings is the largest company trying to cash in on the "Anti
VD" bandwagon by designing and selling 10 different cards with
an Anti-Valentine's Day slant to them.
television stations around the country have run news stories in
recent weeks about this novel marketing gimmick. According
to one news report,
"the anti-Valentine's Day cards are moving as fast as
chocolate-shaped hearts" at the downtown Cleveland store
operated by American Greetings."
"We saw that there were parties
that were occurring that were sort of anti-valentine's day where
again black might be the primary color instead of red with
broken chocolate hearts and black balloons," a company
spokesperson told reporters.
Two online greeting card websites
-- Yahoo and Blue Mountain -- have added an Anti Valentine's Day
section to their collections.
But the negative marketing is not
limited to greeting card vendors. Several other businesses
in various parts of the nation are using Anti-Valentine's Day
advertising to lure customers to their establishments.
CafePress, an online marketplace
that claims to have millions of vendors using its services to
sell their products, is hosting an Anti-Valentine's Day Contest.
It has invited designers to compete with each other by creating
Anti-Valentine's Day product designs.
One designer submitted a lapel
button with the word SAD in the middle, and around the edge of
the button is the slogan "Singles Awareness Day -- February 14,
2007." Another is a heart shaped candy with :-( in the
middle. Another displays a skeleton and under it are the
words "Cupid is Dead."
For the young adult crowd, the
Gypsy Bar in Boston is throwing an Anti-Valentine's Day Party on
February 9 for singles who are mourning the fact that they don't
have a romantic Valentine. The club's website encourages
singles to "bring photos of their exes to shred."
MatchActivity is sponsoring its
"first annual Anti-Valentine's Day party" at Les Deux in
Hollywood, California on February 13. The promoters must
be optimistic about the turnout since they are advertising this
as an annual event.
Blonde, a dance club in Kansas
City, Missouri says that its "Second Annual Anti-Valentine's Day
Party is for the non-lover in you." Singles and
non-romantic couples are invited to attend the event on February
14 where they can "boo Valentine’s Day."
In Chicago, the anti-Valentine
crusade is being led by The Poetry Center which is
throwing its "No Love for Love: Anti-Valentine's Day Show" on
Feb. 12 at the Chicago Apollo Theater. The Poetry Center?
“We’re tired of all the hearts
and flowers,” says Poetry Center Executive Director Lisa
Buscani. “We’re sick of greeting card love. We want to hear from
the other end of the love spectrum.”
According to Buscani, "it
promises to be an evening of bitterness, bile and fun.”
One of the more surprising venues
is a major library in Springfield, Missouri. The Library
Station is sponsoring an Anti-Valentines nighttime event for
teenagers on February 16. Those who attend are encouraged
to "make an anti-Valentine card or compose an anti-love sonnet."
In San Francisco, the gay
community is capitalizing on this counter-culture phenomena.
The Lesbian/Gay Chorus will move onto the main stage at the
Theatre Rhino on Feb. 9-10 for Love Bites the Hand that Feeds
It -- its annual anti-Valentine's Day cabaret.
I guess I should face it.
There is a niche market in Anti-Valentine's Day merchandise and
A resent national poll found that
nearly half of Americans look forward to Valentine's Day while
13 percent dread it.
send my greeting to those on both sides of the issue.
Happy Valentine's Day or Bah
Humbug. Take your pick.
Unmarried America 2007
Thomas F. Coleman, Executive Director of Unmarried America, is an
attorney with 33 years of experience in singles' rights, family
diversity, domestic partner benefits, and marital status discrimination.
Each week he adds a new commentary to Column One: Eye on Unmarried
email@example.com. Unmarried America is a nonprofit
information service for unmarried employees, consumers, taxpayers, and