Our Valentine Redesign Challenge elicited many great entries to our Flickr page. And we received mailed-in submissions too. They ranged from a set of miniature cards “inspired by a muse and faces of love” to my favorite, a three-foot tall by two-foot wide poster from Victor Stabin. He created the “microcephalic minotaur” — a small-headed monster once imprisoned in the Cretan Labyrinth — as the new ambassador of the day.
Victor Stabin's Microcephalic Minotaur
But is Stabin’s monster still living in the Cretan Labyrinth or has it broken free to spread the seeds of romance? I hope it’s the latter, because love as proffered by a monster seems so apt for the messiness of modern day romances.
It made me wonder why we don’t use food more often as an artistic material. Aside from the ice-swan centerpiece or the happy face of chocolate chips on your pancakes (if you’re very lucky), it’s just not done enough, in my book.
That’s why I was particularly blown away by the food sculptures on the site fabulously40.com (some of which are below). These people are serious about playing with their food.
And doesn’t a competition merit a celebrity judge? One who is familiar with the trials and triumphs of modern love?
We’re pleased to announce that best-selling author Elizabeth Gilbert, of Eat, Pray, Love fame, will review your entries and decide which Valentine makeover she [hearts] most. We’ve wrangled her for judging duties while on tour for her new book: Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage. She’ll pick her fave listener design and tell us what it’s like to have Julia Roberts act out her life story. (The movie version of E,P,L comes out in August.)
I’ve never been a fan of V Day, but I decided to give it a shot last year. I was newlywed, so I figured: if not now, when?
I wanted a gift that was grown-up, but not too earnest. Modest, but not drugstore cheesy. So I arranged for my husband and me to take a tennis lesson together.
But about 10 minutes in, I realized this instructor wasn’t going to foster the loving-yet-sporting atmosphere I’d envisioned. Instead, she pitted us against one another. Then I made the mistake of telling her this was my Valentine’s Day gift to my husband, so she snarked about that for the rest of the hour. By the end of the lesson, an over-priced and mediocre prix fixe dinner was actually looking good.
I know we can do better to reinvent this horrid holiday. Now’s your chance to do your part to stop the flood of ugly cards and half-dead roses.