Though we tell kids that work is our job and school is their job, their school is not their office.
We adults can take deliveries at our jobs — if it doesn’t get in the way of production or violate any rules, that is. However, a school with hundreds of children or teenagers is in a different category altogether.
Have you ever stood in line to talk to the school secretary? She is hopping — attending to you as well as those kids in those chairs over there and a teacher or administrator who stops by to ask her something and and also answering the phone, all at once, nonstop, and I’m willing to bet all day long.
She is not able to suspend everything she’s supposed to do in order to spend all day next Monday (that’s Valentine’s Day) to devote her time instead to buzzing in a delivery man, asking him to put on his mask, getting him checked in at the portal (that’s how you get into a school nowadays), taking a huge bouquet of flowers that get pollen on her blouse and balloons that bump into her head, setting them on a table (what table? Who will spend all this week clearing off main office tables for Valentine stuff?), using the intercom to buzz a teacher to call the kid out of class, where the kid is supposed to be learning and the teacher is supposed to be teaching, and all the while that’s going on the next delivery man is ringing the bell.
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Anyone who’s been inside a school office and waited his or her turn to be attended ought to realize how busy they are in there.
So it surprised me to learn that apparently Valentine deliveries to students are enough of a problem that some schools (and we’re not just talking high school) have to send out notices that deliveries of Valentine gifts should not be sent to the school.
Imagine all the chaos that would cause, beyond ruining the school secretary’s day, and inconveniencing everyone else who depends on her to keep things running smoothly: Kids slurping chocolate and leaving wrappers behind all day long, glass vases dropping and breaking and shooting shards of glass in every direction, balloons impeding bus drivers’ vision as they carry our precious cargo who would probably be going even more hyper than usual with all that sugar in their system.
Naturally, once those kids grow up and get jobs, they would appreciate deliveries of flowers, balloons and chocolates to their workplaces. After all, when you send a gift of flowers, you give one gift: flowers. But when you have the flowers delivered to a place where everyone can see them, you give two gifts: flowers for one, and also the gift of extra special attention and pride the recipient can take in front of their peers.
Gentlemen, if you are going to splurge on a floral delivery, make sure to get your money’s worth by having it made where as many witnesses as possible can see just how fortunate your lady is to have you (or, better yet, how fortunate you think you are to have her).
And ladies, you don’t have to sit around waiting for a man to sweep you off your feet on Valentine’s day. Nowadays, Galentine’s Day lets us take matters into our own hands.
Galentine’s Day, on Feb. 13, celebrates women’s friendships. It’s a chance for a girls’ night out with those who appreciate each other.
Of course, in February, if you’re a woman you can have your cake and eat it, too: You can celebrate women’s friendships on Sunday and still have Monday, Valentine’s Day, free for romance with your fellow if you want.
There’s another type of love that can be shared on Valentine’s Day, too, and that is the love the church congregation, or a strong neighborhood or community, has for each other.
Last year I received a Valentine’s card from the men’s group at my church. It was touching, and made me feel special, and frankly, as a woman, it felt good to have a reminder that there is a strong body of good Christian men who come to the ladies’ aid when needed.
So spare the schools on Valentine’s Day. Put that effort instead where it would be better appreciated by all involved — without taking the school secretary hostage.
Although it wouldn’t hurt to send her a Valentine’s Day card.
She probably deserves one more than anyone.
Holly Kozelsky is the editor of the Bulletin. She can be reached at [email protected]
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