Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Fourteen Things NOT To Buy Your Significant Other For Valentine's Day

It's that time of year again. When hopeless guys try desperately to figure out what to buy their lovely ladies for Valentine's Day. When ladies know exactly what they want to receive, but don't want to have to spell it out for their hopeless guys. And inevitably, nobody wins...

Well, I may not have all the answers. Strike that – I don't have ANY of the answers. After all, I too am a hopeless guy. But I can offer a few suggestions of what NOT to get your ladies for Valentine's Day, guys. How do I know these things? From personal experience, you ask? No, not really. But I have common sense. And I know these are some really bad gifts to give. Avoid them like overused clich├ęs!

DISCLAIMER:  I will fully admit that I could be wrong in some cases. Maybe there is a lady out there who's dying to have a gnome clock or a new toilet seat cover, or...but I'm getting ahead of myself. Anyway, if I have misjudged any of you ladies out there and one of these "thoughtful" items IS on your wish list, then I apologize in advance for my presumptions. But I think I'm probably right in most cases. You be the judge...

1)  Shredded Coconut In A Can:  While this may be the love of your life, Hopeless Guy – though I seriously doubt it – I don't think your lady would appreciate unwrapping a can (or two, or three) of shredded coconut. Even if you went to the trouble of using said coconut to make a coconut cake, as seen in the picture below, I still don't think this is quite the impression you want to make on her. Especially if you are still just dating, and would like for your relationship to eventually lead to bigger and better things, like marriage.

2)  The Hoodie-Footie:  I don't care if it does offer "head-to-toe comfort" or is "made from marshmallow soft fleece," this is one creepy gift to give or to receive. It may now be available in a "hot" leopard print, complete with attached ears, wrist cuffs, and "unique thumbholes" – but sexy it's not. It's ridiculous. It's only a slight upgrade from the Snuggie, which isn't saying a whole lot. Sure, it will keep her warm, but as far as having any visual appeal whatsoever, it's severely lacking. There are plenty of stores which sell much more appealing sleep wear. Go to them; they can help you, Hopeless Guy. But don't get her the Hoodie-Footie – if you know what's good for you, just don't do it.

3)  The Big Hunka Love Bear:  This four-and-a-half foot tall teddy bear, from the Vermont Teddy Bear company, is no substitute for you, Hopeless Guy; I don't care how much the voiceover announcer tries to convince you otherwise. The Big Hunka Love Bear may indeed be "a pile of awesomeness," but it's just not normal – on any level. No one in their right mind would prefer the company of a life-size teddy bear to a living, breathing human being. If she spends time alone with this teddy bear and thinking of you the entire time, Hopeless Guy – well, I hate to break it to you, but you might have a real weirdo on your hands. As the video says, "Don't go there!" Well, it was talking about chocolates, but I'm talking about the Big Hunka Love Bear. Just don't do it.

4)  Sex For Dummies Book:  Okay, this one's directed specifically at the married folks. Even if you think that your wife (or even your husband, ladies) needs to read this book, it is NOT – I repeat NOT – a good gift to give them on Valentine's Day. Not only will it likely cause them to experience strong feelings of shame and inferiority, it will also take them too long to read the book to do anything about changing the situation you are in, whatever that may be. (And I don't want to know.) I realize there is a genuine need for books like these, but not on Valentine's Day. Never then.

5)  Tickets To The "Build A Zombie Puppet Workshop":  Now I realize, Hopeless Guys, that for some of you, a "Build A Zombie Puppet Workshop" coming to your town is like a dream come true. And for you, this might make the perfect gift. But your sweetie doesn't want to learn how to make zombie puppets. She might even be offended or creeped out by it. I realize that this would be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for you, and because you love her, you want to share these kinds of experiences with her. But this is not the right thing to do for Valentine's Day. The workshop is the day before Valentine's Day. Here's what you do: Go to the workshop by yourself, have a blast, make a puppet or two. Then, for the love of all that's holy, go do something romantic with your lady the next day. Not this – she doesn't want any part of it. Trust me.

6)  Sweat-Heart Sweet-Shirt:  For those of you who didn't know that the Hoodie-Footie was a bad idea for a gift, here's another helpful hint. Neither is the Sweat-Heart Sweet-Shirt. Not only is it ridiculously overpriced for a novelty item, it's also ridiculous-looking. And probably uncomfortable. And problematic if you and your significant other, like these two in the picture, are of vastly different heights. Save your money and buy lots of anything else for her, whether it be flowers, chocolates, or truly anything else other than this. It's just, well, awful.

7)  Reservations At White Castle For A Romantic Burger Dinner:  There's nothing wrong with a good burger – and from what I hear, White Castle excels at making them. But unless your sweetie is crazy about hamburgers, this is probably not the most romantic place you could take her on Valentine's Day. Reserve a place in her heart somewhere else – somewhere with soft lighting, maybe a live jazz band, or simply have a nice dinner at home, that you cooked. But not White Castle. It just doesn't scream "I've had the time of my life, and I've never felt like this before...", which is probably more what you're going for on Valentine's Day.

8)  Scope Mouthwash:  I don't care how much you think she may need it – mouthwash is not the answer for a last-minute Valentine's Day gift. I don't care whether the color of Scope matches her eyes or not. It's not what she was hoping for from you, it's not what she was dreaming of, and frankly it's flat-out insulting. Get some Scope for yourself – use it before you go on your date with her. But don't give her Scope as a gift. That's just not okay on any level.

9)  Leopard Print Commode Cover:  Woo her with flowers, woo her with chocolates, but don't ever, ever try to woo her with toilet seat covers. It doesn't matter whether or not animal prints are her thing, she still won't want to sit on them in the bathroom. This is a very bad idea for a Valentine's Day gift idea. Please move on. Like, now.

10)  King Ah-Ah-Choo Tissue Box Cover:  No one can argue that this is a unique gift. It's not every day you get to pull a Kleenex out of a pharaoh's nose. It appeals to your inner Indiana Jones. It offers historical perspective – pharaohs had stuffy noses, too. But it does not make a good Valentine's Day gift for the love of your life. It's just too weird. Don't do it. Trust me on this one.

11)  Axe-Wielding Garden Gnome Clock:  I don't care if she does like garden gnomes. I don't care if she likes axes. I don't even care if she likes clocks. When you put the three of these things together, it adds up to a very poor choice for a Valentine's Day gift. Sure, she can boast that she's the only one of her girl friends who has one of these. But she won't boast about it. She won't even tell anyone about it. She won't post a picture of it on her Facebook wall. She might not even thank you. What she will do is – as soon she knows you're not looking – dig a hole, set the clock on fire, and bury the flaming pieces where no one (not even a curious dog) will ever find it again.

12)  Grandfather Clock With Free Roses:  While we're on the subject of clocks, a grandfather clock is also a good example of something that you should NOT buy your sweetheart for Valentine's Day. Sure, Old Time Clock Shop may throw in a free dozen roses with your purchase. But it's not worth it. Put simply, a grandfather clock is not a sexy gift. It's impersonal, it's quite heavy, and it has a tendency to chime loudly at inconvenient times. Save your money and buy two or three dozen roses yourself. You'll thank me later.

13)  The Ultimate Barry Manilow Karaoke CD:  Let's face it. When it comes to cheesy, sappy, and unbearably saccharine love songs, Barry Manilow is the undisputed king. But if you happen to see this CD in the store, or spot the MP3 version of it somewhere online and think – "Wow, wouldn't she LOVE that?" – the answer is no. She wouldn't love it. She would hate it. (Almost anyone would.) And she'd never even come close to actually playing it. Or singing along with it. Ever.

14)  Either Of These Creepy Cards (Or Anything Remotely Resembling Them):  There's a reason they don't make cards like these any more. Because they're horrible. And utterly despicable. And any number of other words which mean "deplorable". If you absolutely MUST buy her a card and ONLY a card (and I don't recommend this, either), then at least find her a decent one. Not one of these monstrosities. At least, not if you want to ensure the future health of your relationship with her. Just. Say. No.

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