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Archive for February 10th, 2008

the Handwritten Valentine Project

Sunday, February 10th, 2008
By raincoaster


Ah, it’s been so long since I was young, but well do I remember the great delights of childhood, prominent among them the receiving of a small avalanche of Valentine’s Day cards. Tell me, do they still have those boxed assortments of the signatories of the Treaty of Utrecht? Hotties of Upper Canada? The Boys of Plato’s Symposium?

Those last remain, I understand, quite popular with a certain segment of collectors. Paul Lynde had the whole set! I got mine signed by most of them. Ah, Eryximachus, why did you play so hard to get?

In any case, I understand that the tradition of V-carding lives on, even if bereft of powdered wigs (insert snide Amy Winehouse reference of your choice). And, as with all social customs, it is magnificently fraught with censorship, one-upmanship, me-tooism, and frantic recounts to reassure oneself that one is, after all, beloved, even if only by “Sekret Admirar.”

Into a world of mass-produced and/or obligatory Valentines comes a radical innovation: Valentines 2.0 you might call it. Handwritten Valentines, each with a personal message, not mailed but photographed and uploaded to the Blogosphere. Just sign up in the comments section of this post on Bloggerdygook and sulz, the blog mistress, will neatly pen a personalized Valentine to you or the victim of your choosing. Print it out, take it to school, post it on your blog, email it to Grandma and Grandpa, or just upload it to your CafePress store and sell the t-shirt.

Here’s mine.

Raincoaster's got one!

Here are the details:

I want to send you a handwritten, personalised message! I shall write you a special message on a piece of paper (or not? Hehe), take a photo of it, then upload it to one of my posts during the month of February 2008.

Why would you want a handwritten valentine from me?

1. You can have a look at my handwriting. I think handwriting is something very personal, especially in this age of technology! And my handwriting is not consistent, never the same twice!
2. You can receive a personalised message from me. Just for you. Nobody else. How special is that!
3. It will totally make your day. It has to, otherwise I’d be very upset. (

See? Even online, some things never change.

Raincoaster's valentine!

Walking Cliche

Sunday, February 10th, 2008
By Glinda

How it should be

The Munchkin has completed his first week of Little League, in the Tee-Ball division.  This division has got to be the cutest one in the world, never you mind that  many of them cannot catch the ball with their gloves.  Minor stuff, just minor.

Anyhoo, the team is made up of five and six year olds, all of whom have varying degrees of enthusiasm/experience/willingness to listen to the coach.  A few of the six year olds are in their second year, and the differences are quite obvious between them and the newbies.

I was perched in my trusty folding chair, watching the team practice, when I saw him. 


This is the dad who intensely instructs his six year old to “keep your head low and your eye on the ball, son” while he is practicing off the tee and hitting into the backstop.

This is the dad who, after his son threw a ball at his teammate especially hard, and said teammate complained, said sotto voce to his wife “He shoulda thrown it harder, that would have shown him how hard he can throw.”

This is the dad who expects perfection at every turn, even in practice.

This is the dad who arrives a half hour early with his son to practice even more than the hour he gets with the team.

In other words, the dreaded “Sports Dad.” This is the male counterpart to “Stage Mom.”

I watched him with dismay and wanted to shout at him, “Don’t you realize you are a walking cliche? Don’t you realize that you are pushing your son so hard that he is going to hate baseball by the time he is twelve?  Either that, or he will go around thinking he is the best player in the universe, only to be crushed when he finds out that there are hundreds of players better than him?”

Yes, I wanted to shout all that.

But I kept my mouth shut.  Because even though Glinda is opinionated, she will hold her tongue when it comes to how he deals with his own child. 

However, if he utters even a peep to someone else’s child about how they shouldn’t have dropped the ball, or ran the wrong way or whatever, Glinda might have a much harder time maintaining her silence.


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