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May 18, 2021

2/9/2009 2:08:00 AM
Valentine's Day: Heaven or Hell?
Insults Could Make It Fun Again

Dee Bonner

Some people are smitten with Valentine's Day. Others think it's a day from hell.

It may not matter which group you're in, because Valentine's Day has been pretty much ordained to make people feel awful. If you're single, you can feel like the world's biggest loser. If you're a couple, chances are somebody's gonna get their hopes dashed or their feelings crushed. Or both.

Maybe Valentine's Day should be for children only. Make it a learning experience. That way, grown-ups can avoid their own Valentine's Day emotional problems and concentrate instead on helping kids survive the cursed holiday.

Please don't misunderstand. I'm not a curmudgeon. In truth, I'm a romantic. Or, at the very least, a sentimentalist. However, I just don't like Valentine's Day.

I might change my mind if Valentine's Day was as much fun as April Fool's Day.

That's why I'm writing this article.

Because Valentine's Day used to be fun. When I was a kid.

Have you ever heard of Penny Valentines? Sometimes called Comic Valentines? Often called Insult Valentines?

Penny Valentines were mischievous valentine cards, printed on cheap, flimsy paper. They expressed sentiments, but they never expressed "love". Quite the opposite, Penny Valentines were single-page greeting cards decorated with grotesque caricatures and cartoons. The cards contained insults in verse form. It's unlikely that anybody prints them anymore.

Insult Valentines were almost always sent anonymously. Many were confiscated by school officials because of their offensive content. It's a pity they disappeared.

On the other hand, in an attempt to make Valentine's Day fun again, I created seven brand new Insult Valentines. I wrote some silly doggerel in crude limerick form and decorated the cards with grotesque cartoons. I call them "Anti-Valentine's Day" cards.

You'll find them in the Sketches & Doodles Section and I encourage you to print them out and mail them to your friends (or foes). Or distribute copies anonymously to your co-workers. Or, e-mail them if you want. Just have fun with them because they're my Valentine's gift to you!

Also, don't forget to vote for your favorite "Anti-Valentine's Day" card in the new Interactive Poll.

And finally, I hope you have a fun-filled, happy Valentine's Day.

P.S. Will you be my valentine?

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