Funny Valentine’s

Bel reflects on the cultural significance of Valentine’s Day, and what it means to her

There are heart-shaped chocolate boxes on the shelves, and it can only mean one thing –  Valentine’s is back and it has slapped us in the face with its discount roses. Ouch. That’s right, it’s that time of year again when we turn to Hallmark to tell our loved ones how we feel for £3. How romantic.




Cynicism aside, I am a Valentine’s Day apologist. Maybe it’s my affinity for a pink and red colour combination, or maybe it’s the unhealthy number of romcoms I’ve watched in my life. I just can’t help it. Despite spending this V-day in isolation, I intend to have a good one. Here is my itinerary.


I will begin my day by reminiscing about all the Valentine’s cards I received as a pre-teen. Do you remember those days? Back when boys would take their mum’s advice and write you a poem or give you an Accessorize necklace. One year I got a hand-made card filled with the lyrics to James Blunt’s ‘Bonfire Heart’. For the record, I cringed even then. As embarrassing as those years were, I can’t help but miss how much confidence we had to tell each other how we felt.


At this point my reminiscing will be interrupted by a letter coming through the post-box. Who is it from? Perhaps a love interest? Did Jake Gyllenhall get hold of my address? No. For as long as I can remember, my mum has sent me a Valentine’s card. One year she went to the lengths of putting a stamp on it and sliding it through the post-box herself, so it looked as though it had been mailed in. She is the most extra person that I know, but I do appreciate that card every year. Love you too Sally.


It’s normal at this point to have a little wobble. Luckily my housemates and I have agreed to do a Galentine’s and give each other secret Valentine presents. We have also decorated the house because it’s more fun than doing lectures. If anyone’s looking for ideas, we’re dressing up and ordering a group takeaway that will be washed down with an excessive amount of red wine (the most romantic drink). For any Parks & Rec fans out there, I intend to host a Galentine’s as good as Lesley Knope’s.


After a few glasses of wine, no doubt I will turn to my phone and ask my housemates for the five hundredth time why he hasn’t texted me back. If they are reading this, sorry in advance.


Fittingly, I have just been interrupted mid writing this article by a delivery. As the Jingle Bells theme erupted from the front door (we don’t know why but for some reason our doorbell now plays Christmas music and we can’t work out how to change it), I felt a little excited. Could it be Jake Gyllenhall himself ready to whisk me away? As it turns out, it was the Royal Mail man delivering some roses and chocolates (and yes, they are in a heart shaped box). I instantly knew this was from my mum. The conversation went a little like this:

DM: Is it your birthday?

M: No, I think it’s Valentine’s Day actually…

DM: Oh of course, I forgot. I think you have an admirer.

M: Yes, I think so.

DM: Does he live near?

M: No, he doesn’t.

And with that I closed the door and took up a foetal cringe position. Did I just pretend I had a boyfriend to the delivery man? Have I really sunk this low? It appears I have. Jokes aside, the roses look lovely in our kitchen and the chocolates will go down well with all that red wine.


Back to my itinerary. I will finish the day by watching a romantic film and fact checking all the things that probably wouldn’t happen. For example, in ‘The Notebook’, there’s no way Noah would write 365 letters after Ali left him. He is a good-looking lad and we all know he would have moved on the second the car pulled out of that town. I also strongly doubt that Ali wouldn’t have checked the letterbox herself before her mum could intercept – how can she have missed 365 letters? To be honest sweetheart, I think that’s on you.




I’m getting carried away. However you choose to spend this Valentine’s Day, I hope you feel the love. And remember – St. Fessdrews is not a legitimate way of asking someone out and an Accessorize necklace never hurts.



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