Just a ploy to get us to spend money!

I was sitting in a coffee shop, finishing a newspaper crossword puzzle when the bloke sat opposite interrupted me by saying “Can I have my paper back, please?”  Cheek!

I thought he’d left 10 minutes before, but he’d just popped to the cobblers next door to pick up a pair of brogues he’d left there in 2004.  Incidentally, the brogues will be ready next week.

Having almost completed the crossword for him, I thought it’d be rude of me not to finish it.  So, I said, “What’s a word for something a postman carries around?” and when he asked “How many letters?” I said “Ooh, hundreds, probably!”  Just like you, he didn’t laugh.

This Friday, our posties will be delivering millions of Valentine Cards and your attitude to and interest in Valentine’s Day will depend on your age and what sort of relationship you’re in.

Even though I’ve been described as a ‘hopeful romantic’, I genuinely think it’s all a cynical exercise by retailers and restaurants to squeeze extra cash out of us not too long after the Christmas and New Year Sales bills have landed on our doormats.

After all, if you love someone, you don’t need to be persuaded by a specific date in the calendar to buy them a gift or take them out for a meal.  Well, that’s my excuse.

But, if you want to buy a Valentine gift for your loved one, there’s plenty of ways to drain your wallets and purses – flowers, chocolates, champagne, a new ironing board cover…no, scrub that last item.

I remember the reaction of my good lady when she unwrapped the one I gave her last February 14th.  The bruises eventually healed but I couldn’t ride my bike for a week.

I’ve never been aware of Valentine gifts for ex-partners you may have split-up with on really bad terms.  But now, thanks to Hemsley Conservation Centre in Sevenoaks, Kent, you can exploit this idea!

Pay the zoo just £1.50 and your ex will receive a certificate confirming you’ve named a cockroach after them!

Subtle? No.  Funny? Definitely.

Unless your postie delivers one to you this Friday…