I just want to say that I wish schools would get out of the Valentine's business.
Not High Schools, or Jr Highs, where the students decide what they want to do (or not), but elementary schools.
You know, the class where the kids exchange valentine cards.
Take fourth grade. We spent a day making elaborately decorated bags to hold our valentines. As an art project it was kind of fun, and kind of annoying because you couldn't just decorate your paper bag any old way; it had to have hearts and such nonsense.
Then it was up to the parents to furnish the kids with valentines to distribute. Which for me meant the least expensive box that would cover the whole class. How much I would have liked to pick just a few nice ones for the friends I really wanted to give to, to set them apart from the crowd.
So on the morning of the 14th you went to school with your valentines in their envelopes, neatly addressed. You attached your decorated bag to your desk. And the chaos of distribution began.
Of course, it wasn't every child putting a little card in every other child's bag. We fell into two classes of distributors: those whose parents made us give each and every classmate a valentine, regardless of whether we loathed each other. And those who were free to give fabulous valentines to a select few, and nothing to the rest.
Naturally there were two classes of recipients: the popular, whose bags were stuffed full of the offerings of their friends and their would-be friends. And the unpopular, whose bags contained just the forced and hollow cards from the kids of give-to-all parents.
There is no child on earth who does not already know which category he or she belongs to. There is no need to go through this exercise to remind us. I actually saw Becky K sort her valentines and keep only the ones from her clique, tossing the rest in the trash.
I don't think it's better to say that every child must give to every other - the whole point of giving is lost. Or that it they should be completely free to choose who to give to - just think of the poor souls who end up with none. I think the whole contest should be abolished.