Valentines’ Day Twist

Seeing Valentine’s Day differently (and with a dash of Tom Felton sugar)

I was getting some sugar tonight.

But not just any sugar; nor the kind of sugar that’s swirled into sweet, decadent dark chocolate or the kind baked into pink cookies and pastries.

I was getting actual sugar–in a jar, and it had actor Tom Felton’s face on it. 

Tom Felton was my Valentine this year–in my head, at least.

And yes; I told the “Harry Potter” star about this little act of mine through Twitter. I didn’t get a reply back, though.

It’s a quirky idea, I know. But being a former “closet Potterhead,” as most “Harry Potter” fans call themselves, and proud Slytherin (with Gryffindor tendencies), I thought Valentine’s Day was the best day to “come out” of this denial.

Despite the strange looks I received from my passing peers, I was quite happy–which is a feeling I don’t often experience on Valentine’s Day.

For a long time, I’ve felt indifferent toward Feb. 14, and it’s not because I don’t have a significant other. It’s because I never understood why it was only on Valentine’s that love and affection are publicly displayed. Then again, this comes from someone who is not as open with their feelings as others may be; I suppose I’m more private, in that respect.

I never thought I’d tweet a celebrity with a photo of their face on a sugar jar, but look what happened!

It would be a lie if I said that I never felt lonely on Valentine’s Day. I mean, when you’re surrounded by couples and you’re the only one standing by yourself, it gets to you. As much as I enjoy my solitude, it would be nice to have someone with whom to spend the day.

This year, however, I wanted to change my perspective a bit. With less than four months left in my high school career, I felt the need to do something different. I was hoping it would be a way to view something from a new angle.

This is where I had the idea. Why not turn my indifference into something else, something that communicates my appreciation for people, especially for those who may not get any Valentine’s Day love from a significant other?

Thus came forth my 2017 V-Day Mission: “Operation: Happy Punny-Tine’s Day.”

I am a sucker for puns; they always make me smile, no matter how silly. I also enjoy making my friends and family happy; to me, if I contribute positively to someone’s life, in any way or form, I am doing my job. I want to make an impact. I want to leave an impression on people so that I will not be forgotten.

On Feb. 13, I printed about 20 photos of food puns and cheesy pick-up lines and woke up the next day with the Tom Felton Sugar Jar in hand, determined to change someone’s day for the better.

And change the day, I did. But the effect was much stronger than I had thought it would be. 

The effects of my little mission began to be made apparent to me once my homeroom teacher burst out laughing. I showed her that I brought Tom to school with me. She thought it was hysterical, especially being a fan of “Harry Potter” herself.

Already, I had made someone laugh, even if it was at me. The littlest things can make a day better or worse, and I think I positively kickstarted her day by sharing something that I thought was interesting. I hadn’t even given her a pun or pick-up line yet!

As Tom received confused and amused looks by passing students, I garnered smiles and hugs from the teachers and peers to whom I dealt out puns. Every grin or laugh I saw or heard improved my mood; I was making an unexpected change in their day and by the brightened countenances I observed, it was a change for the good.

I was even put on Snapchat!

Besides being elated that my random acts of passing out puns were making people happy, I LOVED that I wasn’t the only one the Tom Sugar Jar was getting love from.

By the end of the day, with all my puns and pick-up lines tucked away into pockets and stapled onto bulletin boards in some teachers’ rooms, I felt something in my chest stir. For once in a very long time, I was content on Valentine’s Day. I had made people smile and laugh, and most of all, felt appreciated and loved, even if I had only given them pieces of paper with pretty art and quirky phrases on it.


To celebrate, I stopped by the Kona Ice Truck that was on campus for GALentine’s Day. Of course, I brought Tom along, even if he couldn’t enjoy the icy treat the same way that I could. 

I like to think “Operation Happy Punny-Tine’s Day” was a success, despite its silly premise. Through this endeavor of mine, I was reminded that giving love is not something that is only reserved for Feb. 14; you don’t necessarily need a significant other to be happy. There’s love and gratitude all around and within us, even if it doesn’t seem so. It’s just a matter of going that extra mile to show and experience it.


Leave a Reply