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Sweet (& Sour) Revenge February 10, 2012

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Poetry.

Aah . . . Valentine’s Day.

A time when courting couples celebrate the depth of their love with flowers, chocolate, and eloquent praises sung on high:

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Sugar is sweet
And so are you!

At the turn of the 20th century, disgruntled Victorians not in committed relationships needed something to counterbalance the saccharin sweetness of a day designed for lovers to drown in the depth of each other’s limpid eyes while reciting Shakespeare’s Sonnets . . . or love poems of a lesser quality.

Vinegar Valentines to the rescue!  Sent anonymously, these inexpensive and insulting postcards, decorated with unflattering caricatures of floozies, spinsters, and sleazy dudes, not only counterbalanced the saccharin sweetness of the day, they gave spurned lovers a chance to exact sweet (& sour) revenge on the now displaced object of affection:

Roses are red
Violets are blue
You’re a jerk
Through and through

Wikipedia ~ Vinegar Valentine (in Public Domain)

Didn’t get that badly needed and deserved promotion at work?

Roses are red
Violets are blue
You may be da boss now
But I’m gunning for you!

Tired of an annoying co-worker?

Roses are red
Violets are yellow
I’ve never met
A more annoying fellow

What about the neighbor with a crowing Rooster:

Roses are red
Violets are a winner
Shut that cock up
Or we’ll cook him for dinner!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related posts: Sidey’s Weekend Theme ~ Revenge * A Unique Way to Leave Your Valentine (Sandra Bell Kirchman) * Valentine Inspiration (NOLA Girl) * Valentine’s Day Contest (Positive Parenting) * A Valentine for Someone I Hate (Life in the Boomer Lane) * Happy Endings (NOLA Girl) * Valentine’s Challenge (Sidey)


1. suzicate - February 10, 2012

This is just too funny! I’m thinking there might be a need for these cards; we could go into business!

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Imagine the possibilities ~ the car salesman who sold us a lemon, politicians who’ve forgotten who they are meant to represent, people in jail . . . for good reason, etc.

What an opportunity for mass marketing!
But wait . . . there’s more!

nrhatch - February 14, 2012

BTW: I wrote a “piss and vinegar” valentine for Dirt Man:

Roses are red
But when I’m “pissy” . . . I feel blue
So keep doe pee out of the closet
Or . . . no hugs and kisses for you


2. Andra Watkins - February 10, 2012

I LOVE these, Nancy. So, so funny and such a counter to the mushy-gushy tripe.

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Thanks, Andra. BFF and I tend NOT to exchange saccharin sweet greetings for Valentine’s ~ we choose hybrid cards that make us chuckle . . . or we skip the cards and just buy CHOCOLATE!

3. Piglet in Portugal - February 10, 2012

Roses are red
Violets are blue
I don’t buy valentines cards
and neither should you!

The price of cards are absolutely exorbitant! Pick your loved one a posy of wild flowers and give it to them instead!, I do. 🙂 Simple gestures mean more than expensive ones…

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Roses are red
Violets are blue
You is smart
And we is too! 😉

We tend to skip the expensive cards and either make our own valentines or just . . . Eat M’or C~H~O~C~O~L~A~T~E!

Piglet in Portugal - February 10, 2012

Roses are red
Violets are a blue
Do I love chocolate
more than I love you?

Hmmmm don’t make me choose 🙂

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

We just watched a show that featured chocolate covered bacon, PiP!

I’ve had chocolate covered potato chips and pretzels. The salty sweet combo is usually a winner.

But bacon?

Piglet in Portugal - February 10, 2012

Can’t imagine chocolate covered bacon!. i think you can buy sexy chocolate body paint…
Nah, when I eat chocolate I want to sit down with a good book 🙂

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

I’m with you . . . chocolate body paint is not as appealing as a Lindor Truffle. 😉

SidevieW - February 12, 2012

hehe, i like this one

4. Mands - February 10, 2012

I think I’ll keep my whereabouts a secret, so as not to receive a vinegar Valentine. *Grin* Despite my husbands affectionate, loving and romantic nature… I believe Valentine’s day is one of his pet hates… so he simply ignores all the commercial nonsense that goes with it… and brings me chocolate (which he eats) and pot plants which I love, on a more spontaneous moment. However, I did enjoy your more satirical outlook, so thanks Nancy… I’m on a laughing out loud quest… and you added to the laughter. Have an awesome week-end filled with fun, Mands

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

We stopped going out for Valentine’s Day when we realized our favorite restaurant offered HIGHER PRICES, SNOBBY SPECIALS, and TERRIBLE SERVICE on February 14th.

Maybe this year, we’ll make homemade pizza . . . in the shape of a B~I~G heart. 😀

Enjoy your laugh-out-loud quest . . . laughter is the Holy Grail!

5. granny1947 - February 10, 2012

Roses are red.
Violets are blue.
I have a big nose.
And so do you!

Piglet in Portugal - February 10, 2012

Nice one granny!

Mands - February 10, 2012

The better to smell all the roses and violets!

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Roses are red.
Violets are blue.
You have a big nose.
And big teeth too!

Just look at that massive set of choppers in your avatar! YOWSA!

Thanks for playing along, Granny. Here’s to sweet ‘n’ sour revenge!

6. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide - February 10, 2012

Ha, you find the best stuff!

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Thanks, Greg!

Roses are red
Violets are blue
You cook up great dishes
And Katharine does too!

7. kateshrewsday - February 10, 2012

VERY clever response, Nancy, I love it! I had no idea these existed!

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Aren’t they FUN? I adore caricatures ~ pairing them with vinegar-laced poetry for “sweet revenge” seems far more civilized than “going postal.”

Another one I liked had a “sourpuss” and a “pickle” identified by “this pickle is extra SOUR.”

The poem:

This pickle, which you plainly see
Is surely your affinity.
And yet, poor thing, we tell you true,
It’s very sweet . . . compared to you.

8. Tammy - February 10, 2012

I have never heard of Victorian vinegar! Fun.

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Given the flimsy nature of the paper on which they were printed, it’s a surprise that any survived for 100 years.

Hope your weekend gets off to a SWEET start.

9. Sandra Bell Kirchman - February 10, 2012

I haven’t seen these vinegar valentines before, but I did an article last Valentine’s Day on dumping your significant other – special cards by a small US company. Here is the link, if you are interested.

Sandra Bell Kirchman - February 10, 2012

Oh, I almost forgot:

Roses are red
Violets are small
The posts that she writes
Show that Nancy’s a doll! 😛

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

That’s great, Sandra! Thanks so much!

I’ll check out the link.

10. Jackie L. Robinson - February 10, 2012

LOL…cute. It’s all what we make of it, really, isn’t it? xo

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

A bit of light HEARTed revenge. 😉

11. souldipper - February 10, 2012

Roses are pudgy,
Violets so small,
What would we do without Nancy
To poke fun at it all?

Think you just gave me an idea for Valentines/Birthday dinner…

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Oh, how FUN!

Roses are red
Tulips are pink
Vinegar Valentines
Caused Amy to think!

Have a wonderful Valentine’s/Birthday dinner tomorrow night, Amy.

12. Team Oyeniyi - February 10, 2012

Very cute.

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Roses are red
The sky is blue
In the past year
Robyn’s family GREW!

13. Julie - February 10, 2012

This is too funny!

nrhatch - February 10, 2012

Thanks, Julie. Definitely a FUN subject for “study.”

14. Maggie L R - February 11, 2012

What a great post, you have me laughing… Now, who should I be sending a valentine poem to?… hmmm

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

The possibilities are endless! 😀

Have FUN!

15. JannatWrites - February 11, 2012

I don’t do Valentine’s Day, but even if I did, I can’t do sappy. (It would really confuse my hubby…he’d think I was sick or something.) Not to mention the ridiculous price increases on anything remotely valentine.

Roses are red
violets are blue –
$40 for a dozen, you said?
What’s wrong with you???

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

We give a general nod in the direction of the day . . . but steer clear of over-priced highly-marketed merchandise we are encouraged to buy to prove to the world that we really love each other.

Roses are red
Lilies are white
Diamonds may sparkle
But JannaWrites is right

16. sweetdaysundertheoaks - February 11, 2012

Roses are red
Florida is sunny
No Valentine’s hoopla
For me and my honey!

It’s 4:00am. Can’t sleep. Monkey Mind.
Hope you enjoyed the reception. What a wonderful thing to do!

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

Roses are red
Pixie is funny
Hope she’s back soon
Where the skies are sunny!

We enjoyed both receptions ~ Thursday at the Florida Aquarium with W&M and yesterday at the Studio of Gulf & Pine.

Hope you got back to sleep in short order.

17. William D'Andrea - February 11, 2012

Valentine’s Day? Bah humbug!

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

Roses are red
Mashed potatoes are lumpy
What’s wrong with William?
He sounds rather grumpy. 😆

William D'Andrea - February 13, 2012

This is a joke I’ve been telling every Valentine’s Day for the past few years. The problem is, “Once a joke is told, the joke is old.” The time may have come for me to develop new material.

nrhatch - February 13, 2012

Here’s to creating new material!

18. Connie T - February 11, 2012

I like the one….Roses are red
Violets are blue
You’re a jerk
Through and through

That describes my husband. I also hate Valentines day. It is just a way for the stores to get you to buy something.

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

We use it as an opportunity to refill the coffers with C~H~O~C~O~L~A~T~E . . . an affordable and delicious indulgence.

Sorry your husband is no longer your sweetheart.

19. colonialist - February 11, 2012

I see that my ‘alternative’ Valentine slogans which I propose posting on the 14th are not an original idea. Thanks for bashing my ego!
I’m going to put them in regardless.
*grumpily* Mine are better, anyway.

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

Post away! I’m sure yours are MUCH better. 😉

Roses are red
Revenge tastes sweet
Colonialist’s valentines
Will be a treat!

colonialist - February 11, 2012

Not sure if they will live up to this!

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

I know . . . I’ve set the bar HIGH. 😆

20. adeeyoyo - February 11, 2012

Roses are red
Col is blue
Let’s send him a card
From me and you….

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

Capital idea, Denise! Just the thing to cheer Col up. 😀

21. SammyDee - February 11, 2012

I hadn’t heard of these – they’re wonderful. I’d love if they came back in fashion.

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

Glad you got a kick out of them . . . maybe we’ll start a bit of retro-fever to bring them back.

22. bluebee - February 11, 2012

Haha – love this antidote to all the commercialized smaltchz out there 😀

nrhatch - February 11, 2012

Maybe we’ve grown weary of “Hallmark Holidays” ~ ready, set, let’s mix things up a bit. 😆

23. pix & kardz - February 12, 2012

Small is the rose,
and tall the giraffe.
You sure know how
to make bloggers laugh!

thanks for sharing. what a hoot!

nrhatch - February 12, 2012

Thanks, Kris!

FUN post -> FUN and FUNNY comments. It’s a Win~Win!

24. jakesprinter - February 12, 2012

What a great poem I love it my friend 🙂

nrhatch - February 12, 2012

Thanks, Jake. Glad you enjoyed.

25. Maggie - February 12, 2012

I can think of a whole bunch of people to send those negative Valentines to… great post!

nrhatch - February 12, 2012

Thanks, Maggie. Vinegar Valentines to the rescue! 😉

26. vetrimagal - February 14, 2012

Victorian Vinegar! what fun. I have already sent this link to friends.


nrhatch - February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine’s Day!

27. spilledinkguy - February 15, 2012

I hope you had a wonderful Valentine’s Day, Nancy
(and that rooster knew how to take a hint)!

nrhatch - February 15, 2012

My sister has several roosters in close proximity . . . and they cock-a-doodle-doo at all hours of the day or night.

But she’s vegan . . . so they’re in no danger. 😉

28. eof737 - February 20, 2012

I love that card and was thinking of sending it out this year… Pity I changed my mind. 🙂

nrhatch - February 21, 2012

I’ve never seen one in “real life.” Do you collect them?

29. Happy Valentine’s Day | Spirit Lights The Way - February 14, 2014

[…] you ever sent or received a Vinegar Valentine? […]

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