Valentine’s Day is now just hours away. All the stores are full of roses, musical balloons, cakes and all kinds of reminders that you need to buy a gift, fast. But you are still racking your brains, trying to think of what to buy, and more importantly, what not to buy. For you know from long experience that this is very dangerous territory. One wrong step, and you could land in quicksand. No wonder you are terrified of making a decision.
Fear not, the comprehensive guide to Valentine’s Day gift-buying is here. We will tell you exactly what to buy, and what not to buy.
1. Flowers: We love flowers. They are perfect. But not just any flowers. Did you realize that flowers have meanings? Yes, they do. So when you give us yellow carnations, we wonder if you are looking at us with disdain. Do the yellow chrysanthemums in your bouquet mean you really dislike us?
Perhaps you don’t really mean any of this. Perhaps you are the sort who cannot distinguish between a carnation and a cauliflower. In that case, you should just stick to roses. Not just any rose. Don’t give us yellow roses, they might mean you are jealous. Or white roses – they mean so many things we have no idea what you are talking about. A dozen red roses is safest.
But then, red roses are so passé. And hey, flowers are only an accompaniment, they are not a gift! You think you can pass off a dozen measly roses as a V-day gift? Think again.
2. Chocolate: We do love chocolate. Some of us love dark chocolate, and some of us don’t. But none of us will like the stuff you get in the grocery store. A bag of Hershey’s Kisses? Was that something you bought along with your bread and potatoes? No, it has to be Swiss Chocolate, or the gourmet stuff. Lindt, Ghirardelli or Neuchatel. Or even fair-trade, organic chocolates – we actually like your concern for cacao beans growers in deepest Africa.
But chocolates are not gifts by themselves. Unless, perhaps, they are gold coated chocolate hearts. (Or the $25,000 Frrrozen Haute Chocolate). Otherwise, they are just accompaniments to the main thing.
3. Perfume: No way. What are you telling us – that we smell? Plus, we don’t think too highly of your taste in perfumes anyway. You are very likely to buy something that smells like old leather shoes.
Also, do you have any idea what perfume we like? The men who can instantly name the exact brand we like can only be found in books.
4. Jewelry: We love diamonds, of course. You cannot go wrong with diamond earrings, or pendants. What’s more, diamonds do count as gifts (with or without the roses).
Just make sure though, that they are not “blood diamonds”, have no enclosures and have the right cut, carat, color and clarity. You see, we tend to be just a little bit picky about our diamonds. Don’t buy us the cheap cubic zirconia instead, we will always know the difference. Or that’s what we will tell you.
Whatever you do, never buy those cheesy heart-shaped earrings. Do you really think we would like them, or wear them to work?
5. Stuffed animals: We do like stuffed animals, just as we like flowers. But don’t buy us the $5 stuff you saw at the gas station. And like flowers or chocolate, these are accompaniments, they don’t count as gifts.
6. Gym Membership: Are you telling us we look fat? This gift is obviously the biggest mistake you can make.
7. Appliances: No, we do not want a vacuum cleaner for V-day. What do you think we are – maids?
We also do not want crock pots, cutlery or coffee machines. Or anything that even remotely reminds us of work. These vie with the gym membership for the “worst possible gift” idea.
8. A box of CDs: This may even count as a gift (suitably accompanied by roses and stuffed animals, of course). But make sure you know our taste in music well. Or else you could go horribly wrong.
If we dislike the music, we will still use those CDs – as coasters for your coffee mug.
9. A spa membership/ gift card: You can never go wrong with this one. We love going to the spa, we wish we could go every weekend. Do remember the red roses though.
10. Books: Like CDs, if you know which authors we like, and you know we have not read the book twenty times already, you can buy us books. Hard cover, mind you. Or you can buy us first editions of classics, we will not object.
11. Handbags, clothes or shoes: This is really dangerous territory. Do you have any idea what we like in bags or dresses? Most of the time, we ourselves don’t. We will only know what is “perfect” when we see it. But when we see it in your hands, we will most likely dislike it. So don’t even think of buying us any of these things. And no, a Saks gift card is just not a gift.
Okay, now that you know exactly what to buy, we suggest you head to the store right now. The last thing you want to end up buying us is a greeting card that says “Sorry, I forgot”.
There is no way you can get away with that one.