The comedy and tragedy of valentine’s day

The comedy and tragedy of valentine’s day

As a rule, school boys over 14 years of age in the past, learnt how to write love letters, because it saved them the embarrass­ment and shock if their love proposals were rejected. They normally waited patiently for the girls to reply to the carefully worded letters.

If no reply was received after two weeks, it meant the proposal had been turned down since it could no longer be receiving attention. It could also mean that the girl had been advised by her mates to send the love letter to the headmaster. It showed that she was prepared to reserve her virginity.

When a headmaster receives such letter, he is both glad and sad at the same time. He is glad because some bad boy has been identified and a good example was going to be made of him to serve as a deterrent to other erring lads or potential miscre­ants.


The headmaster becomes sad be­cause of the quality of love letter sit­ting on his desk. He reads the letter three times over and cannot believe that a 15 year-old boy can craft such a wonderful message, so brilliantly, so immaculately. Jesus Christ!

He himself could never conjure such words from imagination irre­spective of the girth of his knowledge in English composition, vocabulary, diction and syntax.

What even amazes the head­master is that the offending boy in normally block-head, so daft that he cannot form a single sentence in English without committing grammat­ical suicide.

Yet he could compose a love letter in Oxford English, the kind of English which the Queen of England would be jealous of.

The headmaster would wonder whether love indeed inspires and turn idiots and block-heads into professional wordsmiths. He must investigate how a 15 year-old boy with no brains whatsoever can pen a love-letter that could touch the heart of any lady who reads it? The most committed nun would not fail to be impressed.

He reads the letter once again and notes the descriptive prowess of the writer, his narrative drive, his liter­ary grandiloquence. He describes his lover’s beauty in terms unimaginable.

After the head master’s investi­gation, he realises that the letter is a stereotype circulating among the boys. The origin of the author is quite unknown, but the letter is certified to guarantee a favourable reply from any girl to whom it is sent. In other words, love unlimited is assured.

Normally, the girls do not under­stand what the letter means. It is more tragic that even the boys who copy the letter, often in very bad handwriting, do not know the mean­ing of the words used, except that they are supposed to evoke love and passion, whichever was forthcoming.

In one out of five letters, a re­sponse is received. The girl acknowl­edges receipt of the letter and adds that she is thinking about the pro­posal. That ends it. It is a polite way of communicating to the boy that his application has been rejected. No hard feelings!

A might accept the proposal not based on the quality of the letter she received. She accepts because she is also either in love or envisions that a relationship would be worth it in terms of the gifts she’d be receiv­ing from the boy, normally without strings attached.


Juvenile love is normally not sexually, but it can evoke jealously to disastrous extents-two girls openly quarreling over a boy who doesn’t know his left from his right.

Two boys can break each other’s nose over a girl who doesn’t love any of them. It’s a funny world and it is great to be young.

When teenagers outgrow their in­fant stupidities, their courtships are more purposeful.

They start entertaining relation­ships that could end in marriage. Those who are lustful and do not have marriage as their goal, court for one-night stands or just for sex whenever they feel like it.

When it is a serious relationship for young man and women for 20 to 25 years of age exchange and on Valentine’s Day, they express love for each other in very superlative terms. By this time they are mature, some in the universities and polytechnics.

In times past, Valentine’s Day was not as important in the lives of couples. February 14 was not a noted day. It came and passed quietly with­out fuss.

It was when private radio stations were granted licenses to operate in Ghana that Valentine became a national disease.


It has been hyped and commer­cialised so much that even secondary school students who used to be very innocent in matters of the heart, constantly look forward to February 14 to either express love, share love or demand sex which they normally mistake for love.

It is really amazing that while encouraging our youth to stay clear of matters that could lead them into unsafe sex, we have over the years glorified Valentine’s Day, openly encouraging people to celebrate the day, and to consummate it with love which naturally ends up in sex.

Before Valentine’s Day, girls start dreaming and boys begin to fantasis­ing about what they’d be doing. They must look their best, spend on gifts and cards.

They even steal from their parents to satisfy their lovers.

On February 14, some boys will escape from the boarding house to go and honour Valentines’ Day. Girls will jump wall to meet them.

Nine months from there, new babies will cry out to announce their arrival into this nation of myster­ies and the blind adoption of alien values.

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