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February 7, 2009

Oh Cupid You Foolish Boy

Filed under: Uncategorized — Twistie @ 12:36 pm

We’re one week away from Valentine’s Day, that day devoted to romance, flowers, chocolates, and other expressions of devotion between committed couples (as well as some who probably should be committed). Over those seven days, expect Yahoo headlines to come up with a dozen silly articles about how giving chocolates is code for ‘I want you to become fat so nobody else will love you’ and how the number of carats in the jewelry is an infallible guide to how much he (or she) loves you.But that’s all canned stuff that feeds into a Hallmark cum DeBeers view of love as a commodity.Sure, there are guys who give gifts with an agenda. Sure, there are jewelry gifts that are generous simply because the giver has the bucks and  thinks you’ll like it. And sometimes a chocolate is just a chocolate.What I’m wondering is this: what is the most romantic gift you were ever given for Valentine’s Day? Was it one of the standards (jewelry, chocolate, fancy dinner with champagne)?  Was it something less expected?And on the other hand, what was the least romantic gift you ever got for V-Day?  PS:  Don’t ask me what happened with the formatting. I really did break this up into paragraphs, but WordPress decided it looked better as one big block. Sorry. 


  1. The LEAST romantic was a cigarette lighter shaped like a German beer stein.

    When I asked my bf what had inspired the choice, he responded, “I noticed you didn’t have one yet.”

    Comment by Constance Kent — February 7, 2009 @ 3:53 pm

  2. To a lot of people this will probably sound really stupid, but it really was the best Valentine’s gift I’ve ever gotten. I got it last year from my husband. I came home from work and probably my least favorite dinner of all time was in the oven (meatloaf), and my house had been cleaned. The kids had already been fed and were corralled in their rooms. I got home and received orders to sit down, put my feet up and do whatever it was that pleased me for the rest of the evening. It sounds nuts, but that blessed man gave me the gift of time for myself. It’s a commodity I hardly ever get, all it cost him was a little time and thought and that monetarily worthless but oh so priceless gift was the absolutely best thing I’ve ever gotten from anyone.

    Comment by Michelle — February 7, 2009 @ 5:44 pm

  3. Best, was last year when I got flowers delivered at work, then he made me real macaroni and cheese (which is my favorite), and he made me a cake (that was incredibly pink and heart shaped [his mom helped him the night before, I thought it was super cute]) and then he gave me Rock Band!

    We’re planning on not making a super big deal of V-day this year. We’ve got appointments at our local day spa for some pampery goodness. And I need to figure out a good internet name for my man… Mr Amazon just sounds funny.

    Comment by AmazonPrincess — February 7, 2009 @ 6:23 pm

  4. The gift that still brings a smile to my face was from the guy who became my first real boyfriend. I’d met him at a party the weekend before and it was one of those college parties where we talked all night long. So I invited him to come into town the next weekend to accompany a friend and I to another party (being young and naive and not really getting the non-casualness of a Valentine invite) and he showed up with one of those Russell Stover peanut butter hearts that was a little smashed from being in his pocket and a Doctor Who book which proved he’d actually listened to me.

    The worst was lingerie – and don’t get me wrong I love pretty underthings and sleepwear but this was a cheap black satin camisole and tap pants (don’t even get me started on my hatred of tap pants) trimmed in maribou. I don’t think I was even able to restrain myself from making some sort of smart aleck remark.

    Comment by KellyGirl — February 7, 2009 @ 8:33 pm

  5. My husband is romantic every day of the year. He tells me how much he loves me every day. Valentine’s Day is just another day. He doesn’t do gifts for Valentine’s Day and I don’t expect them. We’re lucky to have each other and that’s the best gift of all.

    Comment by that redhead — February 7, 2009 @ 8:46 pm

  6. I had to spend the week of Valentine’s Day away at a work conference one year, and unbeknownst to me Himself had rung my boss to find the address, and halfway through a sales meeting on the 14th a big bunch of roses and some chocolates arrived. The most most successful gift I’ve given was (embarassingly) an autographed picture of b-grade cult actor Bruce Campbell. Himself was so excited he rushed off to call his friends and brag before I even got a thankyou (heheh)

    Comment by Lilli — February 7, 2009 @ 10:03 pm

  7. Valentines day is the best of the year. Its my birthday so Im queen for the day. Years ago, in the lean times, my husband wrote me the most wonderful love letter. He travels and the letter was written on the back of menus, on cocktail napkins and hotel stationary. It was his first in our many years together. And I carry it with me everywhere. after all these years its still a treasure. Of course the year I got the diamond and sappire ring was a close second. No no…the love letter is unbeatably romantic.

    Comment by Peaches — February 8, 2009 @ 12:16 am

  8. In college, my best friend (knowing I was kind of miserably single at the time) bought me a serenade from our campus a capella all men’s singing group. No matter how bad you feel about life, a group of boys singing “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” makes you feel a lot better!

    Comment by Lady A — February 8, 2009 @ 12:33 am

  9. My long distance boyfriend came into town for my university Valentine’s formal. This was the first time he met a lot of my friends, and he charmed all their freaking socks off. This included 2 guys who had wanted to date me & weren’t going to like ANYONE I brought; I left the room with him & them to hurriedly pull on my stockings & rushed back out, only to find them all laughing madly & toasting each other.

    Anyhow, later on in the evening, we were standing in the line at the a bar in the swanky hotel site, and he’s looking kind of pale. Turns out, he had salmonella poisoning (he worked in a chicken abbatoir; it happened a lot) and hadn’t told me since he knew I would have cancelled out on the party if I’d known.

    He fainted on the spot. We got him conscious again, and set ourselves up at a cozy table. He still refused to go home, so everyone took turns hanging out with him & us, and he got one on one time with all my best buds when I was dancing. They all still think he’s a hero. I’d never had anyone do anything so thoughtful (if lacking in self-preservation instincts) for me before.

    Comment by QuiteLight — February 8, 2009 @ 8:43 pm

  10. Hmm. Best V-day present was a few years ago when my fiance at the time was a masseur at a spa in Calistoga. He asked me to meet him at work, and we would go have dinner or something. When I got there, he opened to door and told me that my appointment was ready. He had gotten permission to keep the spa open late, just for me, and gave me a massage, showered me, then took a chocolate bath with me before we went out to dinner.

    It’s a pity he didn’t work out, because he was definitely one for the Grand Gestures!

    Comment by Synnamin — February 8, 2009 @ 10:15 pm

  11. When my now-ex husband and I were poor, poor college students, he made me a 3-dimensional paper heart that he decorated, wrote lovely things on, and filled with undyed pistachio nuts, my favorite snack. Obviously, since he’s my ex, we had our problems, but that was sweet and I still remember it.

    Comment by ruth — February 8, 2009 @ 10:59 pm

  12. My now husband gave me the best Valentines day gift ever- It was our first Valentines Day and he agreed to spend the day with me, watching all the sappy love movies I was stunned he had never watched- Casablanca, The English Patient, Out Of Africa and Say Anything. We ordered Pizza, pulled out the couch and drank OK Wine and just chilled for the entire day. We commented how these Love Stories all had a little bit of Sap, but that most of the women were insanely strong and Stubborn- when he said he thought that was my sexiest attribute, I knew that I was a done deal. This year we are planning on hangng out at home ant attemting to make Pasta from scratch— sigh- I love that man!!

    Worst Valentine- Bar None- I was 16, had my first boyfriend who had a massive- were talking Marlon Brandos Funeral Spray- flower arrangement , delivered with an uber flowery romantic card that had a ring in it- it was my ring that I gave to him. In the card was a note that said he was sorry, that he wanted to end things. I was sapped, hurt, cryng and all around pathetic. Had to spend my first broken heart in a world that was celebrating all things love related. The worst part of the day was running into him and a friend of mine sharing an order of fries at the burger joint my girlfriends took me too in order to drown my broken heart with chocolate milk shakes and fries. I didn’t stop wearing black on Valentines Day until that spectacular day 14 years later with the man who would become my husband.

    It’s been 20 years- I think I’ll forgive the guy….

    Comment by Kimks — February 8, 2009 @ 11:13 pm

  13. The best gift my boyfriend has given me for Valentine’s was last year, when he surprised me by showing up to spend the day with me (we’re long-distance). I was so touched that he would use the one vacation day he gets a year to see me!

    Comment by Nicole — February 9, 2009 @ 12:35 am

  14. Many years ago my former husband (he wasn’t former then) made me a card by glueing candy conversation hearts into sentences. It was very sweet – too bad he got stupid. Last year my BF (who claims we are only friends) invited me over for dinner and had a heart-shaped pizza and gave me a large chocolate heart filled with my favorite dark chocolate meltaways. I hope he does the same again this year.

    Comment by Jane H. — February 9, 2009 @ 11:18 am

  15. Wow, I had forgotten this until now–my first husband actually sent a barber shop quartet to my office, I think it must have been 1989 (and I still work there now!). I don’t remember what they sang, though.

    My second husband is off the hook, though. I make a deal with him before we got married: he didn’t have to give me stuff for the traditional days (birthday, Valentine, etc.) so long as anytime I asked, he’d get me something within a week. I’d much rather have a gift when I’m feeling low, plus get that terrific feeling that I can ask for my needs to be met and get them met right away, than get perfunctory automatic gifts. (The other part of the deal is that he never has to read my mind about what I want: I just tell him. He keeps a list of things I’ve asked for and chooses something off the list when I ask for a gift.)

    Comment by Kai Jones — February 9, 2009 @ 2:57 pm

  16. I have always told boyfriends (and now my husband) that they are off the hook for V-day. I want something offered freely, not because of Hallmark pressure. (Which is why I am not a fan of Mothers’ day, but that’s another issue.)

    One of the most romantic things my husband ever did for me was to go to Wal-Mart at midnight to get a new battery for my car and then install it immediately so I could go to my early-morning exercise class.

    Comment by class factotum — February 9, 2009 @ 3:20 pm

  17. WOW Sorry for the typos in me earlier post- should not post on Chardonay-

    Comment by Kimks — February 9, 2009 @ 3:57 pm

  18. The worst V-day gift I’ve ever received was from my high school boyfriend, who thought himself quite the hopeless romantic but really needed to get a clue about what type of lady he was dating. It was one of those chintsy gold lacey-heart-and-rose necklace deals that kids get for their moms on mother’s day. I thanked him profusely, and buried it at the bottom of my jewelry box.

    For years, Hubs and I did the whole cranky anti-establishment protest of Hallmark holidays thing, insisting that if we REALLY cared about each other we would do special things whenever we wanted to. Problem was, we never actually HAD those random celebrations of our love/relationship/whatever. Clearly, we needed a little structure. Now we use V-day and anniversaries and such as an excuse to set aside time and do something special for each other, which usually entails making a big complicated meal together and drinking way too much wine. This year we’re making sushi and watching kung-fu movies :)

    Comment by Evie — February 9, 2009 @ 7:09 pm

  19. On the contrary, Kimks! I think you should post on Chardonay more often! You definitely are in the lead on the Worst Valentine’s Gift Ever award…and I thought Constance Kent’s Beer Stein lighter was going to hold the lead for at least seventeen comments! But a funeral flower arrangement with a break up note? I think it’s hard to do worse than that.

    I love how many of you say your favorite gift was something other than the expected. Time, sappy movies, an errand run in the rain for your benefit…these are my favorite sorts, too. But Michelle, I hope your hubby remembers that you’re not fond of meatloaf this time.

    Thinking back, I’ve never gotten a flat-out ghastly gift for Valentine’s Day that I can remember. Certainly there have been gifts I’ve liked better than others, but nothing that comes anywhere near as rotten as something that’s tacky and clearly not for my benefit or a break up note. I do, however, have a best Valentine’s Day gift story that will probably appeal to some of my fellow romantic suckers out there.

    The year was 1986, and Mr. Twistie and I had just started dating the month before. It was a long-distance romance with some hundred miles or so between us. I actually had plans to be away over Valentine’s weekend, plans that had been made well before Mr. Twistie swept me off my feet with an afternoon of used bookstores, garlic fondue, and Monty Python.

    The day before I was set to go on my trip, during the worst rainstorm that had hit the area in decades, I was working my shift in the department store restaurant that employed me at the time. As we were closing things down at the end of the shift, someone came back and told me some guy was was there to see me.

    I walked out of the back only to find a dripping wet Mr. Twistie standing in the doorway bearing a single, long-stemmed red rose. He drove over a hundred miles in a vicious downpour just because he didn’t want to miss seeing me over Valentine’s. And since I had to finish packing that night, he could only stay for a short while, but he said it was worth it. Yes, it was a rose and chocolates and dinner, but I absolutely wasn’t expecting any of it. Wibble.

    Have I mentioned lately that I love that man all to pieces and back again?

    Comment by Twistie — February 9, 2009 @ 7:22 pm

  20. Evie — you’re right — these holidays are the perfect excuse to pull out the stops on a nice meal! My husband and I like any excuse to cook steaks and a rich chocolate dessert. And although he is off the hook for getting me anything, I always still get him something because I like the corniness of it all.

    Comment by class factotum — February 9, 2009 @ 11:04 pm

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