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Love is in the snare

02/12/09

Valentine’s Day is in two days, which gives men a day and 23 hours more than they need to get the perfect gift for their woman, and women enough time to practice writing their sentiments on a piece of notebook paper before committing it in ink to a card they spent an hour and a half picking out.

And despite the fact that 86 to 100 percent of all men (depending on where their wives are standing) will tell you that it is a fabricated holiday specifically designed to screw them over, I have delved deeply into the human psyche to understand the wide valley of that seems to exist between the thought processes of the sexes.

Specifically on what kinds of gifts are acceptable on the most loving of holidays.
What you get someone for Valentine’s Day is dictated by many factors, including how long you’ve been dating, or married.

And if you don’t believe me, ask a woman who has been married 20 years to give a chronological accounting for the Valentine gifts she’s received. Most women, in the absence of head injury, will remember every one, for better or for worse.

Most of the time, it begins with chocolates or flowers, graduates to jewelry, flattens out to “What, Valentine’s Day is today?”, and then begins a gradual decline to vacuum cleaners and alarm clocks.

I’ve always believed that very, very few people begin dating two weeks before Valentine’s Day because they don’t make “I Like You So Far” Valentine cards.

And the card is very important. It must be sincere and it shouldn’t rhyme.

Sincerity doesn’t rhyme with anything. Always remember that.

This is such an important topic, I conducted a poll of several men and women (most of whom I know) to get their take of what a crappy Valentine gift is, so you won’t make the same mistakes.

Some of the people who responded asked that I not use their real name, which after reading them, I kind of agree. So I’m not naming any names.

WORST GIFT
EVER RECEIVED

“I have never received a “worst” Valentine gift. Before you get all warm and fuzzy for Bill, the reason is because I can’t remember the last time I received one.”
– ? –
“A wheel barrow.”
– ? –
“A phone call that said he hates Valentine’s Day because it is expected that the guy gets the girl flowers and that flowers should be given “just because.” When I asked him to name the one - just one time - he has given me flowers “just because”, he couldn’t. BECAUSE HE NEVER HAD!”
– ? –
“It was a hand-held, gas-powered weedeater that was so big I would have heliported out of my own yard had I tried to use it. On the upside , it had a huge strap that fit all the way around my body so ‘it wouldn’t get away from me.’”
– ? –
“A dozen pine trees that all died within weeks one time.”
– ? –
“A guy came to visit me at (Texas) A&M and gave me a card three days later (3 days AFTER Valentine’s) telling me how I should feel really good because it was a big deal for him to give me a card. GIVE ME A BREAK!”
– ? –
“The worst Valentine’s gift(s) I ever received all involved body parts: a cold shoulder, a sharp tongue and a disdainful stare. I’m pretty sure I worked hard to get those gifts. One year I managed to get a matched set.”
– ? –
“An alarm clock.”

WORST GIFT
TO GIVE OR RECEIVE

“Clothing that you charge to me...”love coupons” - turns out these have a secret expiration date that come and go just before I try to use them; District Court restraining orders.”
– ? –
“A gift certificate for a colonoscopy.”
“Life insurance policy.”
– ? –
“Underwear in any size larger than you actually wear.”
– ? –
“Vacuum cleaner.”
– ? –
“Electric mixer.”
– ? –
“A (how-to) book on sex.”
– ? –
“A Yorkie.”
– ? –
“Anything with an electric cord.”
– ? –
“Cutesy stuffed animals, and the necklaces that have the pendant that looks split and you put them together to make a whole.”
– ? –
“Cheap lingerie and the last card at Dollar General.”
– ? –
“Cleaning products, socks, manual yard tools, the DVD director’s cut of “The Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre”, pajamas, any form of edible wearing apparel, or gum.”
WORST GIFT
EVER GIVEN
“That’s a toss-up. Either “nothing” or else whatever I did give. Most women seem to think that something is better than nothing. I have repeatedly proven them wrong. I’m not too good at Valentine’s gifts. It’s true that Valentine’s Day was only invented so women could make men feel worse.”
– ? –
“Nothing.”
– ? –
“I gave only a card to my second wife on our second Valentine’s Day together. I was/am a bit jaded and my excuse was that Valentine’s Day is an invented holiday. ‘Why do I need to buy you gifts, don’t I show you every day?’ Not real smart.”
– ? –
“Flowers. They only die. I remember telling my wife soon after we married that if I ever gave flowers it was a sign that I was cheating on her.”