“It is plain that men are in charge of making saints.”
– Karen Cushman, Catherine Called Birdy
How to properly celebrate St. Valentine’s Day:
1) Be a Roman priest during the reign of the Emperor Claudius Gothicus (because that name definitely belongs to a benevolent, wise, un-tyrannical autocrat), perform marriage ceremonies for Christians, get caught, and when on trial foolishly try to convert said unfortunately named emperor. Survive a terrific beating, stoning, and finally die when guards run out of ideas and behead you.
1a) Or maybe be an early Christian convert who gets martyred (like they tended to do), but be fuzzy on the actual death details (also like they tended to do).
1b) Or finally be an obscure early Christian hermit who, neglecting utterly to conform to the social expectations of the time, failed to be martyred at all.
2) Fade into even more complete obscurity
3) Have Chaucer casually mention the tradition that February 14th is the day that birds choose their mates and forever after be associated with romance and love.
4) Stew for nearly another 700 years and enjoy the romance, kids!