Valentine’s Day with Scripts N’ Pranks

Davidson students have a long history of extracurricular writing during their time “around the D,” and one example of that tradition is Scripts N’ Pranks, which focused on “literature (scripts) and humor (pranks) as well as a horrible parody, for which we have already apologized.” (Quips and Cranks, 1936) The magazine ran from 1936 to 1965, and its more “serious” features often appear to spoof women’s magazines or crime fiction of the era. In celebration of Valentine’s Day later this week, we present a sample of both the literary and humorous takes on love found in the earliest few years of Scripts N’ Pranks:


“Fullback and Frances” by Charles Crane, December 1936. Tagline: “Romance Comes to the Small College Campus… Brawn vs. Brain Trust…”. Summary: dumb football player falls for “dreamy, theatrical” girl, who he attempts to save from a fire, only to learn that she was not in her dormitory because she had eloped with the campus “brain” instead. “She liked to study and build air castles, and seemed to have intellectual curiosity, something that was scarce in a cheap little educational mill like Lennox-Smith. Professor Patton would have diagnosed the whole affair as a psychological mis-adjustment, but Bill, being a freshman, with an IQ of 88, didn’t go in for diagnoses, even of his own problems.”


“Spring Sorrow” by Hugh Stone, March 1937. Tagline: “A Story of Growing Things – Pale Pink and Yellow – And of Blonde Hair Like a Halo.” Summary: college junior embittered about the “romance of spring” after being jilted by hometown sweetheart. “That was last year, but now that it’s spring again and the shrubs are blooming just the same way they did last year, is it any wonder that Bill turns away with a cold laugh when love is mentioned?”


“His Coming,” The Yowl, November 1937. Summary: a woman gets exactly what she wants. “If he would only come and say that single, longed for, hoped for, little word!”

“Chapter in Chivalry” by Bob Ramsey, November 1937. Tagline: “Dreckney’s hero was a sucker for two things – middle-aged chivalry and a girl.” Summary: college football hero is engaged to a student at another school, who ditches him in favor of the rival school’s football captain. “Of course, he realized now, she hadn’t answered his telegram, for why should she encourage him in his fight against her new fiance, the captain of Grendel’s football team?”

“May Storm” by Erle Austin, May 1938. Tagline: “Michael thought, ‘Can Heaven be as gorgeous as this?'” Summary: college student goes home on a whim to visit his girlfriend and witnesses her being fatally struck by lightning. “He had not noticed a threatening black cloud which had suddenly come over the horizon. It had begun to rain. At the clap of thunder the olive green canoe with his own beautiful Anne had vanished.”

“Late Date” by Erle Austin, March 1939. Frat brother asks a beautiful, mysterious girl to a dance and falls in love, but when he attempts to give her his pin, he finds that she already has one. “… he unclasped his pin from his vest and was about to pin it on her when she said ‘Please Wycliffe, don’t do that… Let’s always be the best of friends though. Look here. I want to show you something.’ Becky had opened her evening bag and he gazed in amazement at a gorgeous Beta pin clasped to the silken lining. Wyc stammered out a very weak ‘Congratulations.'”


“True Love” by John McKinnon, December 1940. Summary: college boy is frantic to see the woman he loves most… his mother. “He ran to her, gathered her in his arms, and smothered her with kisses. ‘Mother dear,’ he cried, ‘I’ve missed you so much. Why don’t you give up teaching and move to Davidson where I can be with you every day?'”

To read the full versions of these tales or to search for more love stories, visit the archives!

Leave a Reply