Saint Valentine’s Day is getting closer (it’s February 14th, for all you cold unromantic souls), and you still have no idea what to get your significant other? Although I may not be able to tell you what will melt his or her heart, I can suggest you some ideas to avoid. But first, let’s say a thing or two about Saint Valentine.
After all, he was the one you should blame for your troubles in picking out a gift. He was a cool Roman dude from the 3rd century who was secretly marrying couples, and defying the order of the emperor Claudius by doing so. The emperor didn’t need good husbands, but he did need soldiers to fight his wars.
You can already guess how this ends, right? Valentine was imprisoned, and before his execution he left the jailer’s blind daughter a note signed “Your Valentine” (how on earth did she read it?) This is why since the Middle Ages St. Valentine has been the symbol of courtly romantic love. Now you really have to get that gift; the guy died for this.
But before you go out on a shopping spree, we’ve prepared a short list of gifts you should absolutely not be searching for.
First of all, do not (and this cannot be stressed enough), get him or her any heart-shaped meat products. Yes, those exist. No matter how much your loved one might enjoy meat, this is completely distasteful and there is a chance that salmonella might ruin your Valentine’s Day celebration.
However, you can take your partner out to a nice dinner; perhaps you can arrange your food in a plate in a shape of heart. It’s safer, and much more romantic.
His & Her Tongue Scrapers are not a good idea. Although it says “His & Her,” which suggests romance, do not get fooled. Nobody wants to be told their oral hygiene is questionable on the day people celebrate their infatuation. Same goes for deodorants, shower gels and mouthwash. Perfume is a valid solution here, if you really are that unimaginative.
Different cultures, different practices. Let’s focus on Japan for a moment, shall we? It is a weird place, so guess what some of them gift their significant others for Valentine’s Day. Their face moulded in chocolate! You can get custom chocolates with both your and your partner’s face on it made by 3D scanners. Not creepy at all. If you decide upon this option, shave, shower, groom yourself to be as presentable as possible.
Here’s another good one! Novelty toilet paper with romantic quotes and hearts all over it. All so your beloved ones know how you feel about them while they’re… well, on the toilet. My love for you is like The call of nature… I just can’t hold it in! Poetry like that would embarrass even Shakespeare.
If you decide to go the do-it-yourself gift route, start with something simple, for example, a card. Do be careful not to write something like You’re so sweat, though. This leads us to another bad gift idea – a dictionary. I think we can all agree on the fact that I think you’re illiterate doesn’t convey your true romantic feelings towards your partner that well.
Also, sending a singing quartet to someone’s workplace is another thing to avoid. Although it is an incredibly romantic thing to do, imagine the embarrassment your significant other will feel when four men ambush them unexpectedly and burst into song in front of their colleagues and boss. It’s even worse if they’re out of tune.
If you decide to go with some sexy lingerie, make sure to check your partner’s size. Getting your wife or girlfriend a bra two sizes too big, or a pair of underwear a few sizes too small sends a very confusing message. Maybe you can make her feel insecure about her looks some other day. Or, you know, never.
Are you or your partner foodies? Toasters are great, really. They make your life so much easier, by allowing you to prepare your breakfast faster. Agreed? They warm your bread and make it all crunchy and beautiful and heavenly; but do you want to be that person, someone who gets their loved one a toaster for a Valentine’s Day? If you, however, decide to go the toaster route, do get up a bit earlier and wake your darling up with a nice breakfast in bed.
Again, let’s avoid sending confusing messages. Getting someone an unsolicited pair of running shoes, whey protein or a paid gym membership may not be the best idea. It is easy to see where you’re coming from, if your partner likes to exercise, but it may imply you think they should lose some weight. That is not something one wants to hear while people around them are being all lovey-dovey.
Is your partner a smoker? Then don’t get them a pack of cigarettes. Sure, your partner smokes and has to buy cigarettes every day, but a Valentine’s gift should show you care about the other person and you actually made some effort to pick out a gift they might like. Buying a pack of cigarettes for your partner, no matter how pragmatic this is, takes about a minute of your time, including the thinking-over about what to get them. It’s also a bit lame, to tell you the truth. A lot lame.
And finally, getting someone nothing at all may be the worst option out there. Sure, your love is deeper than the oh-dreaded-capitalist-invented-holiday (or maybe you’re just cheap), but think of it as a way of saying I want you to know how special you are to me, because, you know, most days we’re too busy handling life and maybe I don’t say it enough.
Whatever you decide to do about your Valentine’s Day gift, think about what would make your partner happy. At the same time, show them you know who they are as a person. You can melt your Valentine’s heart by getting them something special. Be creative, be thoughtful and stay in love!