Wednesday, February 06, 2008



Jane’s friends teased her. Sixteen and she’d never had a Valentine's card. As soon as Christmas was over the dread of Valentine’s Day grew within her. When January turned to February, and shop windows filled with pink cards, balloons and cuddly bears, she turned within herself. She hated Valentine’s Day.

Last year a group of the kids in her class made a spoof card and wrote in it ‘Plain Jane, go play with your toys,‘cos you will never play with the boys’.
Every morning as the big day approached, she saw boys dropping cards into the pink post box at school.

Every Valentine’s Day, the cards were handed out in class.

Every year Jane was the only one to leave empty handed and broken hearted.

There was one boy, Charlie, who she was drawn to. He was one of the most popular lads in the school. She knew it was stupid, but she posted a Valentine card to him this year. She knew she couldn’t be teased about it because the rules say that you don’t put your name in the card. You just drop a hint. But Jane didn’t even risk that. No, she simply drew a heart in red pen with a blue arrow through it. She didn’t expect to get a card, any cards this year. Not from Charlie. Not from anyone.

And so, on the morning of Valentine's Day, the cards were duly handed out in class. Sally, her skirt hitched even higher than usual, was the most popular girl if the sheer number of cards where anything to go by. And Charlie was weighed down by heaps of cards, not just from his class, but from all over the school.
Jane predictably got none.

The taunts started and the teacher called for order. Jane, as she had previous years, rushed out of the room in floods of tears. She spent what seemed like hours in a cubicle in the girl’s bathroom. Eventually she emerged, with blotchy pink cheeks and puffy red eyes. She gazed at the floor in the hope that no one would notice the look of despair on her face.

She was suddenly aware of someone in front of her. A boy judging by the shoes and trousers. He wasn’t going to move aside, so she darted to the left. An arm shot out and held her back. She sniffed, and then slowly looked up. It was Charlie. In his hand was a pink envelope, and he was offering it to Jane.

Her initial reaction was to pinch herself. She filled with emotions, lots of emotions. But her delight turned to suspicion when she wondered if he was giving to her out of pity. Why didn’t he post it in the pink box? Was he scared of ruining his image by choosing Jane as his Valentine? But then no one would have known it was from him. So why was he doing it this way?

‘Take it Jane’. I wanted to give this to you myself. You’re not like the rest. You are special. Just remember that’. With that she allowed herself a coy half smile. Jane took the card, Charlie squeezed her hand.

At that moment, Valentine’s Day was the most wonderful day of her life.
comments under sunday scribblings!
Sunday Scribblings - Fridge Space!
The doctor asked me for a sample of 'you know what'. He gave me a little glass pot with a white label on it. Very small it was. This was clearly going to be a challenge. He told that once I had filled it I was to keep it my fridge until my appointment later in the day. A notion I didn’t relish!

Anyhow, I managed it. It wasn’t easy, but I’m not going to go into the ins-and-outs of how I did it here!

So, here I stand, vessel in hand, fridge door gaping, and not a space to be found. I can’t believe it. When I shared this fridge with a woman, there were always gaps, and everything was lined up like soldiers on parade awaiting inspection. She knew where everything was, how long it had been there and when it had to exit! This is a shambles.

What’s in the top? Ah, this is yoghurt. Strawberry. And another. Also strawberry. I don’t even like strawberry yoghurt, but according to the yellow sticker it was reduced in price. I can never resist a bargain. Where’s the ‘eat-by date? Strewth! Bin!

What’s this? A half of a family sized cream cake. Are they normally that colour? Let’s have a sniff. Woo! Goodbye!

This shelf is sticky. Not nice. Can’t really put the pot there.

Now, the middle. Three boxes of sausage rolls. I got them for when my friends came round the other night and forgot all about them. But why I bought three I really can’t imagine. Ah, buy two get one free it says here. Another bargain. Let’s see. Oh, rock hard. They’ll have to go.

This looks interesting. Sort of a pie. Oh – I remember. When my friend Rosey came round a couple of weeks ago she proudly presented it to me. Her own recipe she said. It was filled with sweet and sour quorn (that pretend meat stuff) and topped off with a wheat free pastry lid. I can honestly say that I did try to eat some, but the pastry was like concrete, so I put it back until I next had my tool kit out! Sorry Rosey, it’s on its way.

Right. Butter, gone a rather odd shade of yellow. A bag with tomatoes in it. At least I think they are tomatoes, or are they peppers? No, they are apples! Well,they were once. Goodbye. An open tin of – what on earth is that under the green fur? Think I’d better dump it. Now this looks interesting – pwah - no it doesn’t!

Here’s another bag in the bottom. I think that used to be lettuce, and this one has some - er – something inside. Think I can live without that!

Now to the door compartments. Beer! Good! Lager, 7 tins – perfect! Half a bottle of chardonnay. Let’s see if its ok – it is! Well, it’s not quite the taste I remember when I opened it, but waste not want not.

So let’s stand back and admire the improvement! I’ve never had so much fridge space. All that work has made me hungry, but there doesn’t seem to be anything left to eat. Never mind, I usually eat take-outs anyway.

The sample can go right there in the middle. Woops! Shoot! It’s slipped out of my hand and smashed on the floor! Oh well, I’ll clear it up in the morning.


  1. Keith I love this post. Very cool.

  2. Those kids should have to give everyone in the class a valentine!!!!!!
    Thank you for ending it well, Keith!

  3. Little Wing, if everyone got a card it would't have much of a story! Glad you liked the ending!!!!

  4. I would hate for anyone to be left out...that's why I am not sure I like Valentine's all that much...esp. in schools when children are tender hearted. But the ending makes up for it all.

  5. ul - if my coin had landed tails up it would have been a totally different story! May just have another go!

  6. Oh you big romantic. I love happy endings. Great story

  7. The Literary Prostitute8 Feb 2008, 00:56:00

    Sounds like my husband's fridge before we moved in together and I shaped it up - Great post!

  8. Alright. Something needs to be done about that fridge before you succumb to food poisoning...hmmm. Maybe that's what they were checking for?

  9. wow... you weren't even pissed when you dropped it!!!!!

  10. haha I LOVe this post Keith! Good ol' beer, it lasts very long! Another reason I love chips! We don't have to worry about them transforming into something unidentifiable! haha Hope that urine test- tests well!

  11. i feel like i was standing right there beside you in front of the fridge reading your thoughts.

    Loved the Valentine story too.

    Enjoy your weekend....

    ps. cheers to beer.

  12. Kids stories are your forte Keith, beautiful!
    That fridge, I was looking over your shoulder, it was a foodies tour for sure, LOVED both these brilliant posts! You're a talent!

  13. Aww! How wonderful. I loved the happy ending in this piece, and I can so relate to Jane. I was one of those "special" girls too.

  14. Liked these stories. I've got an escape clause regarding Valentine's cards, though. My wife's birthday is the next day, so they're combined.
    It's amazing what people can find in fridges.

  15. Keith,

    That one card holds greater value than all the others put together. Very endearing piece;)

  16. Atta-boy Kieth have a couple of those brewskies and you'll have another sample in no time. Finish off the chardonnay, rinse out the bottle and use it for the's good to re-cycle. Great story, I'm still LMAO
    ( according to my daughter means laughing my ass off)

  17. I'm so glad you picked the happy ending.

    As for the second one, I'm giggling at the irony of cleaning out the fridge in order to store *that*.

  18. I loved both posts (you get two for one when you drop by here for Fiction Friday - though I looked and neither are out of date or unpalatable!!)

    I always wished like Jane that this would happen to me. I never got anything on Valentines Day from a boy - there was a certain solidarity amongst my female friends and I, and we'd always send at least one flower to a friend so we'd be carrying something around with us on Valentines Day. I think maybe when I was 19 I got a single red rose (bought from the flower seller) and if my memory serves me correctly there would be petals from that flower in my diary - but I digress.

    ...And the fridge - well it seems you would be truly at home around our fridge. It's at the point of no return at the moment and much needs to be tossed. I always feel bad about all thoe starving kids somewhere when I'm tossing huge lumps of mouldly food in the bin.

    What I admire most in your work Keith is your ability to create so many unique characters and 'voices' in your writing. There never seems to be two alike!

  19. Aww, an adorable story. Thank you for the Valentine...I love that song!

  20. ewww...clean that sample up! hehe
    Loved the valentine story too!

  21. Very funny SS. I liked your different expressions of disgust for each item. Well done!

  22. Amazing how a little speciman can lead to a major fridge clean out!

    Still laughing here!

    Good one!

    Smiles and Light

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  24. making space for 'you know what'(!) potion & a whole fridge 'clearance', in the 'bargain', huh! One Fresh post! :)

  25. The ending took me a little aback, but I like it, hehe...

  26. i loved these posts! and mop your floor!!! :)

  27. Keith, I LOVE that Valentine Story!!

    & The fridge story with a Ewe ending is so hilarious! :D

  28. Aww... I love a happy ending. On the first post, at least, the second wasn't so happy. But if it makes you feel better, your fridge contents sound a lot like mine! lol Great post!

  29. Keith,
    You just never know what lurks in the hearts of our fridges.

  30. ewwww. in the morning. awesomely gross!

  31. This was very funny and such a "manly" post. LOL

  32. oh this SS is so funny Keith...I am in tears.!

  33. Too funny! Somehow I thought everyone in the world was better at fridge-ing than I. Last week I found a can of Pepsi with an expiration date in the 1900's. Funny, funny post!

  34. But you just cleaned the whole fridge!?!?! Why not wipe the floor?

    Gross but great! ;)

  35. what a wonderful coming of age teenage story...from a young girl's perspective... awesome... now the fridge story hilarious... i could just see you standing hunched over the beast within searching for space... and then to splash and not clean it up till morning... hmmm, hopefully someone else will not come after you searching for something.. ewwww

  36. Great stories, Keith- thank you!
    I loved the Sunday Scribbling..your expression as you examined each pot were so cleverly caught and so true to life- it made me laugh out loud as I pictured you; on your haunches, in alien territory, getting more exasperated at the minute as you picked up item after item. I didn't feel that you went in that fridge too what had happened to the woman?!

    The Valentine's story was very poignant and true to life for so many young girls. I thought you were clever to end the story where you did...just giving her a moment of happiness seemed far more realistic. Sometimes stories like this are spoiled by the author having the two suddenly married off...moments of joy are just that, moments; whereas happiness comes over time.

    Thank you, Keith, for the wonderful reading! Thanks too for the kind message at my place!



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