METRO PLUS

Call it a DAY

What would card companies do without Valentine's Day?

What would card companies do without Valentine's Day?  

IF SOORAJ BARJATYA'S Main Prem Ki Diwani Hoon had a saccharine sweet 25-minute Valentine's Day sequence, it only goes to show the popularity that certain special days haveamong the young junta.

From Kiss and Make-up Day, Humbug Day and Forgiveness Day, to the all-important Valentine's Day and the evergreen Friendship Day, we have a zillion days now. You may think it is an indication of the growing commercialisation of emotions, or perhaps the crass economics of greeting card companies. But, for the I-Me-Myself generation obsessed with this brand of culture, it is a race to celebrate the `landmark' days.

There was a time when Children's Day or Teacher's Day were celebrated with pomp. Now there are days designated to seek out the techie, doctor, pet, apart from mamma, papa, grandparents, friend, boss et al. It all began in the '90s with Valentine's Day fete. And this to celebrate the death of the Roman saint whose name is now as famous as Sachin Tendulkar's!

Though Valentine's Day takes the cake, Friendship Day is also important. And on the D-Day, it's absolute revelry with pubs, shopping malls, multiplexes and cafes overflowing on to the streets.

Since when did we need a day to celebrate friendship?

Since when did we need a day to celebrate friendship?  

But do we need special days to greet our loved ones? Says Shriya Rathore, a B.Com student, "love should be expressed through action, not words." P. Vittal Rao, a tax consultant, counters: "More often than not, we take our loved ones for granted. So, a special day makes them feel happy."

Ajay Nanduri, a PR Executive, never forgets to give flowers to his mom on Mother's Day: "It just is a mark of my affection for her." However, Dr. Sarita Motwani, a radiologist, disagrees. "I was very close to my late father. But I never felt I should present him a card or some gift to show that I love him."

Earlier, it was only cards, flowers, jewellery and perfumes. Now, hip stuff like scented candles, heart-shaped chocolates, cute watches, colourful mugs, soft toys, and trendy T-shirts replaced as gifts. Some card shops have a music gallery, too, for youngsters to select top chartbusters as gift items.

Dr. Naresh P. Hanagodu, orthopaedic surgeon, does not "relate to this westernised culture. This is imposed on us." Gauri Pradhan, an MBA student, differs, "there's nothing wrong in sharing love and spreading happiness." P. Neelima, a hairstylist, says : "Though I keep fighting with my parents, I make it a point to present a bouquet to mom and dad on their special days."

Kamal Hassan distributes roses to cancer patients on Rose Day

Kamal Hassan distributes roses to cancer patients on Rose Day  

As for commercialising emotions, it's not just restricted to greeting cards. From emails to SMS, love can be expressed in so many ways. About greeting card companies importing western concepts and Indianising them, Hallmark shop manager, P. Jayant, says: "We are not here for commercial benefits. If the youth brigade wants to celebrate, who are we to stop them?" The telly and movies are a major influence on youth. "Kuch Kuch Hota Hai with its Friendship Day theme was a blockbuster," he argues.

Marketing executive, B. Jayadev, comments: "It's a mass niche. A niche where there is no age bar. Therefore, these card companies thrive and so do the days." But where will it all lead to? "The day is not far off when we may come across `Very Slim Day,' or `Beckham Day'," laments Maganti Amarender, a retired government officer.

But, do you remember what day it is today?

Landmark fundays

* January 8: Clean Your Desk Day

* January 17: Golf Day

* January 26: Spouse's Day

* February 8: Boy Scout Day

* February 14: Valentine's Day

* February 20: Love Your Pet Day

* March 7: Dentist's Day

* March 12: No Smoking Day

* March 16: Ides of March

* March 30: Doctor's Day

* April 1: April Fool's Day

* April 5: Fun at Work Day

* April 7: No Housework Day

* April 28: Kiss Your Mate Day

* May 11: Eat What You Want Day

* May 12: Mother's Day

* May 21: No Tobacco Day

* June 8: Best Friend's Day

* June 16: Father's Day

* July 2: I Forgot Day

* July 15: Ice-cream Cone Day

* August 2: Friendship Day

* August 3: Heart Transplant Day

* August 5: Sister's Day

* August 9: World Indigenous People's Day

* August 18: Bad Poetry Day

* August 25: Kiss and Make Up Day

* August 27: Just Because Day

* September 9: Grandparents' Day

* September 12: Video Game Day

September 22: Rose Day

* October 3: Techies Day

* October 11: Bring Teddy to Work Day

* October 16: Boss's Day

* October 28: Make a Difference Day

* October 31: Halloween Day

* November 3: Sandwich Day

* November 13: Kindness Day

* November 17: Peace Day

* November 21: Hello Day

* November 22: Thanksgiving

* December 7: Letter Writing Day

* December 10: Humbug Day

* December 15: Underdog Day

G. ARUN KUMAR

Recommended for you