Bulletin Dilution, Confessions of a Social Pariah, Reflections

Confessions of A Social Pariah: The Valentine’s Day Survival Guide

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By Spliph, South Africa:

I formed a page on Facebook, code name N.A.H.A.B meaning the 'National Association of

Husbands and Boyfriends'. I thought it necessary to rekindle the NAHAB flame seeing that Valentine's Day is fast approaching.

NAHAB was to be the vanguard in extraditing the injustices of Valentine's Day. Now, I have no problem with people falling in love, but Valentine's day is a commercial wave of red and white peppered with rhetoric and cliché's.  It brings me great sorrow to see ladies in their infinite wisdom in time management placing dominos all over the place. This well thought out mechanism will be guilty of chocolate shortages and garden heists around the world come the 13th of February.

I have a very bitter relationship with Valentine's day; that story dates back to the late 90's and early 2000's in the suburb of Bosmont where I completed my Primary Schooling atGR Harris. It's a Monday morning and we are gathered for the morning assembly wearing nothing but white shirts and very short shorts. Mr Fick, the school Principal (R.I.P) struts to the stage to deliver the Morning Prayer and general threats that kept me in line for all my 8 years there. After the prayer and the threats were delivered, like every week, Mrs Kungwane sang her riveting opera rendition of the Lord's Prayer so passionately and enthusiastically. We'd clap in unison at the marvel that is the singing voice.

Fast-forward some 15years later; that lady was making a noise!

Mr Fick would then return to the stage having had his spirit fed with some divine musical notes and carry on with his threats consisting of the weekly climax; the dangers of crossing the cemetery after school.  Shortly afterwards Mr Fick announced Friday's casual day being themed for Valentine's Day and that the school will be collecting a R2 contribution.

Cheers and clapping consumed the school and broke the early morning silence concluding the week's morning assembly. Back in my Register class my teacher tells us that because of Valentine's Day, we can each pick a matching partner for Friday's festivities.  Friday.

It's Friday morning and I arrive teaming a complete red ensemble. So complete even my undies were the colour of love. Perfumed plastic rose and a glittering card in hand; failure was not an option. As the fellas proudly paraded their gifts, the ladies too calculated their genetically afforded bounty; I got nothing, and I can't remember whom I gave my rose and card to.  Not much changed in the following years, in fact the first time I received a gift on Valentine's day was in my late years (Matric) of high school.

As embarrassing as those statistics are, you will be pleased to know I kept a healthy wallet in

My pocket every year.

Push came to shovel in the Canteen of Rosebank College. The year was 2012, and on the table sat Magashule, Bogatsu, Ntaupane and Mokoena.  This meeting was where I tabled a revolutionary document titled: OPERATION SIDLA'ABANTWANA. This document consisted of the guidelines in female procurement to aid our social profiles at the learning institute. I swear, I'm not making this up; I have signed and dated agreements of that very meeting. Having shaken hands in agreement and each one called a witness to sign too – we geared in to action with the objective of relieving some poor sobs their companions.

Operation SIDLA'ABANTWANA was an emotional flop; deadline came and only one of us had mastered though not conventionally the charm to meet the objective. I was well on my way to unhanding some dreadlocked skater his joy when religion along with immobility got the better of me.

Last week I saw some bloke in a pullover carrying a very large teddy bear and very red roses. For those who are not well versed in South African racial nuances, seeing a black man carrying a bunch of roses is equivalent to Jacob Zuma with one wife – ngekesbali –  fear not gents, I have a plan.  I call it the Valentine's Day Survival Pack – in the next lines you will learn the intricacies and Modus Operandi of how to have a successful Valentine's Day with none of the financial strain and a limited chocolate intake.

Time: As I'm sure you are well aware most women have no regard for time. Never will a woman be early unless it is for a hair appointment or for the Thursday Muvhango finale.  This you can use to your advantage – Never mind the sweet talk that is making its way to your ears on how Valentine's Day must be special and how you guys must be together all-day. Start being late for appointments – arrive later than her. Start working overtime and be late for appointments. She won't notice this, rather she will be happy she has a hardworking spouse.

Introduce Exercise in your talks. Women are very sensitive when it comes to their physical appearance – mention that she has gained a bit of weight and that you guys should exercise together.  Through this you will be spending less on chocolates this Valentine's Day.

Hide the facial cream. Women love taking cute selfies, but whether you notice it or not – great planning goes in to a selfie. That is why they take 20 of them and only use 1.  By hiding the facial cream, she will feel “unselfieble” and not want to go out. So no posing with food and colourful smoothies because she will look terrible in those pictures. This is great because eating at home is way cheaper.

“My mother wants us to…” If you fall in the unfortunate category where your girlfriend gets along with your mother, I'm very sorry. You have lost out on the best excuse for sitting back while mom pampers her son.  Moms love their sons; Mom will go out of her way at outdoing your Girlfriend on Valentine's Day. Invite mom along to the mall on Valentine's Day. You will leave the mall hours

Later with a full stomach and a disappointed Girlfriend. Should she later enquire, which she will, you can always say to her “you will also have a son one day, would you want him to put his Girlfriend before you”? Genius right?

Wear Sandals to your date the day before and lose your bank card. Sandals are the worst thing to grace the face of the earth according to women. Seeing toes is the worst thing ever – men's toes that is. I have no idea why they say this because their multi coloured toe nails are unbecoming. So pull out those sandals and intentionally forget to apply lotion on them.  Lose your bank card.  Nothing is as demotivating as spending 30 minutes at the bank. And if history proves true, spending time at the bank on a Saturday will really test even the most patient of us. So, lose/ hide your card, go to the bank and lose your temper or patience then storm out without cancelling the card. No Valentine's day can go on without the plastic.

So, there you have it, how to beat the red this year and still maintain a good image.  And oh… it's my pleasure.

@JustLebo

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