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Posted at 07:12 PM ET, 02/14/2012

Free ecards, Newt Gingrich, Barack Obama, and other Valentine let-downs


That’s — information. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) (Evan Vucci - AP)
Fantasy, meet reality.

In fantasy, Valentine’s Day is a day when you waltz from cloud to cloud into the arms of a sensitive, but not excessively sensitive individual with Mitt Romney’s looks and Chris Christie’s personality — or, er, vice versa, or, er, never mind, just get Mitch Daniels over here.

In reality, Valentine’s Day, is just another Tuesday when I have to think about Rick Santorum. I’m sure it’s like this for many Americans.

For much of the country, it’s yet another day when you are reminded that the president of the United States apparently has a more functional love life than you do. “Hey, @MichelleObama:, Happy Valentine’s Day. -bo,” the President tweeted. “I wonder how Al Green ended up on our playlist, @BarackObama! -mo,” the First Lady responded, later.

Oscar Wilde noted that married people flirting is like “washing one’s clean linen in public.” That about sums up my feelings, albeit with a little more fist-shaking.

But it’s not just the Obamas. One might be able to stand that, or at least to console oneself with the thought that later, the president will have to explain his contraception policy to the girls.

Heck, Newt Gingrich has a more functional love life than you do. Newt told reporters that — well, I’ll spare you. There is no reason you should be made to suffer as I have. All I will tell you is that he thinks that he will make Callista “quite happy.” Maybe he’s planning to leave her! But then again Callista and I clearly do not have the same idea of what constitutes happiness. As for the rest of their plans for the evening, the less said the better. On this point, I echo Jezebel’s Cassie Murdoch’s sentiments.

Even for us less grandiose Americans, we’ve reached the point on Valentine’s Night when “free ecards” starts beating “flower delivery” in the Google search rankings. I like Google Trends. They add a certain touch of realism to the proceedings. Watch too many commercials and you become convinced that these things simply happen by magic. A cherub hands your wife chocolates. But in reality it is not so. If I had a dime for every time people searched, “Last Minute Flower Delivery,” I’d be Edible Arrangements.Com. And as the day wanes, the romanticism of flowers and chocolates is quickly being supplanted by the harsh, drab realism of the e-card. To paraphrase a quote, nothing says “I completely and totally forgot” like an e-card. More thought has gone into handing someone a lightly used tissue you discovered at the bottom of your bag.

Fantasy, meet reality. It’s Valentine’s Night.

By  |  07:12 PM ET, 02/14/2012

 
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