Some years ago on Valentine’s Day, a young man came up to me, and said, "Dad, How do you spell Dummkopf?"
"Three years of high school German," I blurted out, "and the only word you remember is Dummkopf? And you don't know how to spell it? Call me old-fashioned, but I don't think you should be using it on other people when you can't even spell it yourself. We are trying to impress the admissions officers and get you into college, you know."
"Don't worry, Dad. It isn't not for college. It is part of a post I'm putting on a girl's Facebook page."
"A post? On a girl's Facebook page? On Valentine’s Day? A girl whom you would like to have like you? And you are going to do that with ‘Dummkopf’?“
"Relax, Dad. It is counter-intuitive. I don't expect you to get it because face it, you’re old. You just don't understand girls today. You don't know what makes them tick. She will know it's a joke. She'll laugh and think I'm a charming guy - believe me, this will add to my desirability in her eyes."
My son may have had a point on that age thing – in all the years of buying Candy Hearts, never once did I see one with "Dummkopf" on it.
So, since it was Valentine’s Day and since I could definitely use a boost in the charm and desirability department, when my son and I passed under the home-sweet-home lintel, I went straight to increasing my charm and desirability with my wife, employing my son’s specially crafted greeting of, "Happy Valentine's Day, Dummkopf!"
I'm not sure it worked out the way it was supposed to, unless you call a bump on the head in the shape of an iron skillet a sure sign of increased desirability.
Later, when the doctor asked why I had such a bad headache and I told him how it had happened, he just looked at me and said, "What are you, some kind of dumb head?" No, I answered, "I'm pretty sure 'Dummkopf' is the word you are looking for."
So, here’s the moral of the story: when it comes to Valentine’s Day, “love” might be a better choice for you than “Dummkopf,” ‘Love” as in “Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection outdo one another in showing honor. Contribute to the needs of the saints, extend hospitality to strangers” (Romans 12:9-13).
Do that and you probably won’t end up with an iron skillet souvenir on Valentine’s Day.
– Pastor Tom
United Methodist Pastor, Child of God, Follower of Jesus Christ.