Dear Mr. Smith,

I have been watching you. I really like your turtlenecks. Especially the purple one. I think I am in love with you.

Happy Valentine’s Day, by the way. My hypothesis is that you do not like Valentine’s Day. My observations are: You broke the chalk while writing the word “Love” on the board; and then you threw it on the ground and spat on it. Also, you started crying when we passed out the valentines. I used all the other days of the year as the control group and used Valentine’s Day as the variable. My conclusion is that you and I are soulmates.

After all, we both wear turtlenecks, and nobody likes us. But I like you. This year, I didn’t get any valentines, unless you count the chocolate moose my mom gave me before I came to school. She said “I’ll moose you while you’re at school” when she gave it to me, which I found very funny at the time. Now, I just feel empty.

My mom thinks that it’s important to be inclusive. That’s why I wasn’t allowed to have a baby-sitter’s club unless I allowed everyone to join. I thought that was a ridiculous stipulation, because how can any small business get off the ground if it doesn’t have any standards? Anyway, it’s because of my mom’s stupid morals that I was forced to bring “Saved By The Bell” valentines for all the kids in our class, including the ones who throw their snacks at me. Not everyone’s mom is as obsessed with kindness as mine is, which is why I received exactly two valentines, one being the moose and the other one being one I wrote to myself.

I’ll let you in on a little secret, if you’re interested. Since you’re my fifth-grade teacher, I feel like I can trust you. You’re the first boy teacher I’ve ever had, and that’s really cool, because you’re super cute! Anyway, the secret is: You’ll look like you’ve gotten a lot of valentines if you write some to yourself! And don’t just pick some silly person for it to be from, pick someone that no one else can compete with. I picked God. Here are some examples of the valentines that I received this year from “God.”

Dear Eli, I really like you! Love, God.

Dear Eli, You have a really clean desk! Love, God.

Dear Eli, I like you more than that girl in the front row with the pigtails. Will you be my Valentine? Love, God.

See? It’s easy, and everyone will wonder how you got so lucky and they might start thinking that they are going to go to H-E-DOUBLE-HOCKEY-STICKS for throwing their snacks at you.

I always thought that grown-ups had it harder than kids because everyone expects them to have sex all the time, and that’s a lot of pressure! Is that what you’re worried about? If so, don’t worry, I don’t expect anything from you, except that you’ll teach me Social Studies.

I have done some research on the topic of Valentine’s Day, which I have provided here to cheer you up. As it turns out, St. Valentine could have been one of up to three people! I tried to research the three different people, but it turns out they were all holy and pretty boring in the sort of way that made people like them (but not enough to remember which one was St. Valentine).

One of those three guys died and according to one of my sources (my brother goes to Yale and he told me that Wikipedia is a really great source for true information), “many tourists visit the saintly remains on St. Valentine’s Day, when the casket is carried in solemn procession to the high altar for a special Mass dedicated to young people and all those in love.” Would you like to come with me after D.A.R.E. to visit the remains of that guy? I think it might be in Italy, but we could pretend on the playground. The thing is, I’ve always imagined that one day I’d be in love and I’d be able to walk solemnly and look at dead people as a way of celebrating that love. And the thing is, Mr. Smith, as I said before, I’m in love with you.

You’d probably rather have a candle picnic with some sexy grown-up, but I’m pretty sure I’d be a great girlfriend. I brush my teeth twice a day, and my mom says I’m pretty. Plus, I know how to do long division, and I’m a good friend.

If you want to be my Valentine, just write Yes, No or Maybe on my spelling test. I’ve included a poem for you if you are still deciding. Here it is:


Really Nice!

Sooooo cute when he talks about the Civil War!

My mom says I really lucked out having a good teacher!

I think I don’t know any words that start with “I”

To be or not to be – remember when you taught us that?

Hate is not what I feel, it’s LOVE!


Eli from the second row!

Eli Clark wants to know your valentinual preference. Princesses, Spiderman or bi-valentinual?