February Is The Month For Love

Think Valentine’s Day gets too much attention? Here, we’ll highlight the historical moments that prove the entire month of February was made for love.

By Kent Miller

don’t know about you, but I don’t see why only one day in February is set aside to celebrate romance. The month is still bleak and chilly and hence a perfect time for fireplaces, hot cocoa and cozying up. Herewith are 28 romantic reasons (plus one for leap year) to get all kissy this month.

February 1, 1811
Jane Austen spends the month writing Mansfield Park, her last novel. Can we all agree that the
Mendelssohn has sent bouquets a-flying down the aisle thousands of times.
world is a better place now that Jane Austen has been in it? Yes, we most certainly can.

February 2, 1977
International pop sensation Shakira (née Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll) is born in Barranquilla, Colombia. Witty Austenian dialogue is great, but there comes a time in any romance when the sentiments expressed in the lyrics to her hit song “Whenever, Wherever” are exactly what’s needed.

February 3, 1809
Felix Mendelssohn, German composer, is born. Mendelssohn has sent bouquets a-flying down the aisle thousands of times since with his iconic “Wedding March” composition.

February 4, 1938
John Logie Baird demonstrates the world’s first color television broadcast, sending a crude image across London via radio. Without Baird’s innovation, Rachel and Ross’s first kiss on Friends just wouldn’t be the same.

February 5, 1850
Esther Howland, widely credited with popularizing the English custom of Valentine’s Day cards, places the first ad for her innovation in a local newspaper in Worcester, MA.

February 6, 1959
Jack Kilby of Texas Instruments files a patent application for an integrated circuit. Fifty-one years and many complicated inventions later, voilá:’s matchMobile service.

February 7, 1988
Millions of viewers stay riveted to their TV sets for the first night of the miniseries Elvis and Me, based on Priscilla Presley’s memoir detailing her marriage to one of the most lusted-after musicians in history.

February 8, 1872
The Italian premiere of Aida takes place at La Scala in Milan. Doomed lovers! Shiny Egyptian costumes! Elephants! We’re talkin’ opera here, people!

February 9, 1964
The Beatles make their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. A nation swoons as Beatlemania takes over.

February 10, 1933
Underemployed baritones and mezzo-sopranos find work as the Postal Telegram Co. of New York introduces the first singing telegram.

February 11, 1992
Taylor Lautner is born in Grand Rapids, MI. And that’s your obligatory Twilight reference. He’s also in the movie Valentine’s Day, released last year on February 12.

February 12, 2009
We’ve all had our share of bad V-Day memories. But hey, cheer up! In the “St. Valentine’s Day” episode of 30 Rock (season 3, episode 11), Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) and dashing Dr. Baird (Jon Hamm) have the Worst. Valentine’s. Date. Ever.

February 13, 1867
Johann Strauss II’s Blue Danube Waltz premieres in Vienna, Austria. Quick, get my top hat!
The couple takes great fun in renewing their wedding vows each year.

February 14, 1859
It seems very appropriate that George Ferris, the inventor of the Ferris Wheel, was born on Valentine’s Day. Millions of bashful hands have become intertwined as lovers take their first kisses on his invention.

February 15 (c. 500 B.C.-A.D. 300)
Romans celebrate Lupercalia, an ancient fertility festival which also includes purification rituals and priests running circles around the Palatine Hill (which was famously chronicled by Ovid).

February 16, 1937
DuPont research chemist Wallace H. Carothers receives a patent for nylon. A few years later, the word “nylons” became synonymous with ladies’ stockings, a sexy — yet classy — wardrobe staple.

February 17, 1966
Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys begin recording their iconic tune, “Good Vibrations.” I personally consider this song is one of the most sublime expressions of what it’s like to be a young man in love.

February 18, 1925
Prohibition-era lovers make eyes for each other at an estimated 30,000 speakeasies in New York City. Any date that requires you to knock three times and whisper a password has got to be pretty intriguing.

February 19, 1963
One half of the World’s Most Beautiful Couple (Extremely Long Name Category), Seal Henry Olusegun Olumide Adelo Samuel, is born in London. Later referred to simply as Seal, he eventually marries reality TV impresario, supermodel and designer Heidi Klum Samuel. The couple takes great fun in renewing their wedding vows each year.

February 20, 1979
Snowed in with her two young sons, Nora Roberts of Keedysville, MD, begins writing. And writing. And writing. With over 165 books published, Nora Roberts is now one of the most popular and prolific romance novelists of all time.

February 21, 1878
The first telephone directory is issued in New Haven, CT. Soon after, a nervous boy is the first to be frightened when his would-be date’s father answers the phone and barks, “She might be home! But first, who is this?”

February 22, 2004
HBO airs the series finale of Sex and the City.

February 23, 1956
Already a legend in the making, actress and model Norma Jean Mortenson obtains a court order from City Court of the State of New York and legally changes her name to Marilyn Monroe.

February 24, 1981
Buckingham Palace announces the engagement of Charles, Prince of Wales to Lady Diana Spencer.

February 25, 1998
Filming begins on the quintessential early Internet romantic comedy, You’ve Got Mail.

February 26, 1917
The Original Dixieland Jass Band records the first jazz record in New York City. Dancin’ and romancin’ has never been quite the same.

February 27, 1930
Joanne Woodward is born in Thomasville, GA. Half of one of the most respected couples in Hollywood, Joanne got to gaze into Paul Newman’s baby blues for more than 50 years. If this wasn’t enough to melt you, two famous love songs also peaked at no. 1 on this date: “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston in 1993 and “Killing Me Softly with His Song” by Roberta Flack in 1973. Finally, on this date in 1998, Britain’s House of Lords ended a thousand years of patriarchy by giving a monarch’s first-born daughter the same claim to the throne as a first-born son.

February 28, 1931
Love Boat captain Gavin McLeod is born in Mount Kisco, NY. Come aboard, we’re expecting you!

February 29, 1944
The birth of legendary big band orchestra leader Jimmy Dorsey rounds out our month of love. Why not celebrate by listening to his wonderfully titled hit, “Besame Mucho” (Kiss Me Much)?

Kent Miller is currently writing a comic young adult novel. His articles have appeared in Nintendo Power magazine, The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, The San Francisco Chronicle and The St. Petersburg Times (Florida).
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