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A brief look into the complicated relationship 'The Post' has had with Valentine’s Day over the years

When one thinks of romance and Ohio University, the Kissing Circle on College Green comes to mind for many. A small circle nestled near the corner between Wilson and Chubb halls, there’s a plaque commemorating the circle where college lovers would meet in times before cell phones. 

“The Kissing Circle holds fond memories for decades of Ohio University alumni and symbolizes our affection and dedication to one another,” the plaque reads. 

And that proves to be true, as OU is no stranger to romance. Here’s a look back at some of the most romantic — and unromantic — things The Post has written about Valentine’s Day.

Hard-boiled eggs and extravagant gifts

Back when The Post was known as The Green and White, writer Carol Seeger took Feb. 14, 1936, to write about how Valentine’s Day wasn’t what it once was in the column “The day isn’t what it was when gifts cost $4,000.” 

While $4,000 seems like a lot by today’s standards, $4,000 in 1936 is about $72,000 today. So whatever gift it may have been, it was impressive to say the least. 

Seeger discussed how the holiday came to be, including how folks claimed Feb. 14 is about when birds claim their mates, thus humans should too. It also talked of how women must pin leaves to their pillow and eat a hard-boiled egg to ensure dreams of their valentine. 

While not romantic in the slightest, Seeger’s words from more than 80 years ago may beckon for someone to Google where the holiday truly comes from. 

Jesus on Court Street

“It’d bad enough that the holiday feeds the coffers of multinational corporations, but that’s to be expected. If Jesus Christ materialized on Court Street one afternoon, the captains of commerce would squeeze a buck out of it by making souvenir T-shirts and video games,” Jim Heintz wrote Feb. 12, 1982 in a Post column. 

Despite the capitalistic undertones of the holiday, Post writer Alex Jabs wrote Feb. 14, 2005: “Let Valentine’s Day become a holiday dedicated to showing love and appreciation for another person, not just how much money you can spend on them. Love cannot be measured with any currency system.”

The power of love (and chocolate)

While it is known that chocolates and flowers are a staple of the holiday, the monetary display of affection carried itself to Athens Mayor Donald Barrett in the early 1980s. 

“Love is the greatest thing in the world. I’m all for it. I would never veto an ordinance that focuses on love,” Barrett said in a Feb. 12, 1982, Post article. 

In a sick, comforting way, it’s good to know that some political officials agree that there is — by all means — the undeniable power love. 

But watch where you “shoot your arrows,” according to an editorial by The Post on Feb. 11,  2000, because otherwise you’ll have a slew of exes. The holiday ruins itself with fattening chocolate, cheap jewelry and flowers that die, and remember, “true love shows up every day, not just Feb. 14.”

Professor romances

In a Feb. 13, 1998, edition of The Post, Kristen Hampshire wrote about how four professors met their significant others. A common thread between professors is the landmarks that symbolize first dates, romantic meeting spots and even wedding venues. 

“It wasn’t so long ago when some of OU’s professors were Cupid’s targets. Reminiscing about when they met their significant other, professors fondly recall how their hearts were pierced by the Cherub’s arrows,” Hampshire wrote. 

While one couple had their first date at Seven Sauces, a restaurant that no longer exists, another met on East Green.

“We have walked through East Green, and we talk about how much history we have there,” William Miller, a sociology professor at the time, said. “We’ll be walking Uptown and talking about stopping at the Burrito Buggy and where we first kissed and be reminded or all of the memories.”



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