Wednesday, February 1, 2012

I love you, is that okay?

American author Karen Sunde once wrote, “To love is to receive a glimpse of heaven.”

I would like to believe that even individuals who have a heart of stone will agree with that statement.  I’m sure at least once in our lifetime, each one of us has experienced this crazy thing called love.

Whenever the month of February comes, we can’t help but get bitten by the love bug or at least feel the need to be in love when this time of the year comes.  How can you escape the big billboards, mall displays and a shower of cheesy yet sweet pick-up lines that announces Valentine’s Day?

Here are some cool trivia that you might want to know about the celebration, love, relationship, men and women, the heart and other things worth embracing.

The V-Day
Valentine's Day is an annual commemoration held on February 14 celebrating love and affection between sweethearts.  According to, the day is named after the Christian martyr named Saint Valentine, and was established by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD.  It is traditionally a day on which lovers express their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards. The day first became associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished.  Modern Valentine's Day symbols include the heart-shaped outline, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid.

Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus
How can you tell a man from a woman? Well, one easy way is to check the buttons of their shirts.  Men’s shirts have the buttons on the right while women’s shirts have the buttons on the left.  And you can also tell by looking at their eyes.   Women blink nearly twice as much as men.  We can make a list on how to differentiate a guy from a gal and can go on hours discussing it but the bottom line is with the magic called love, people will still find the one for them. And check this out: every day 200 million couples make love and 400,000 babies are born. This will remind us of Wet Wet Wet’s hit Love is All Around.

What’s in a love song?
The oldest known love song was written 4,000 years ago and comes from an area between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers in Western Asia.  In the Philippines, the tradition courtship of serenading women called harana became popular in the 1920s. It is mostly practiced in rural areas and small towns. The man, usually accompanied by his close friends, goes to the house of the woman he is courting and plays music and sings love songs to her. The harana shows strong Spanish influences, as the rhythm of the songs usually performed for the serenade are derived from the Spanish tango or habanera, albeit the tempo for the songs are much slower.

Can this be love?
Falling in love can induce a calming effect on the body and mind and raises levels of nerve growth factor for about a year, which helps to restore the nervous system and improves the lover’s memory.  Love can also exert the same stress on your body as deep fear. You see the same physiological responses—pupil dilation, sweaty palms, and increased heart rate.  People who are newly in love produce decreased levels of the hormone serotonin —as low as levels seen in people with obsessive-compulsive disorder. Perhaps that’s why it’s so easy to feel obsessed when you’re smitten.

Date Movie
Leonardo Dicaprio and Kate Winslet’s movie Titanic which was released worldwide in 1997 is the top-grossing romantic film of all-time with over $600 million of ticket sales.  The total production cost of the film was around $200 million compared to the $7 million actual cost of building the colossal ship Titanic in 1912.  Also, did you know that The Titanic was the first ship in the world to use the SOS signal?    

Matters of the Heart
Christiaan Neethling Barnard, a South African cardiac surgeon performed the world's first successful human-to-human heart transplant in 1967.  The more interesting story is while on a holiday vacation in Cyprus in 2001, Barnard died after reportedly suffering a heart attack. Here’s a dose of fun facts about the heart: The human heart creates enough pressure while pumping to squirt blood 30 feet. It takes about 20 seconds for a red blood cell to circle the whole body. Your left lung is smaller than your right lung to make room for your heart.

Kiss Me
Kissing is said to have originated when mothers orally passed chewed solid food to their infants during weaning. Another theory suggests kissing evolved from prospective mates sniffing each others’ pheromones for biological compatibility.  Here are some random trivia about this great mouth experience….Men who kiss their wives in the morning live five years longer than those who don't… French kissing involves all 34 muscles in the face…People are more likely to tilt their heads to the right when kissing instead of the left (65 percent of people go to the right!)…. The longest kiss lasted 46 hours 24 minutes and 9 seconds between Thai couple Akekachai and Raksana Tiranarat.  Now, if you want to beat the record, the perfect time to do it is on Heart’s Day.

 Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!

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