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Stressing the V-Day gift

Margaret Sheridan | Interrobang | Lifestyles | February 11th, 2008



It's hardly a new phenomenon- the frantic search for the perfect gift that can say exactly how you feel about someone, be them a good friend, a friend you want to be more than a ‘good friend' or the significant other in your life.

Valentine's Day has a way of overshadowing even the search for the best birthday present because this is the one day a year you're expected to be romantic.

And therein lies the problem. Romance should not be reserved for a single day once a year. Isn't the best part about romance the fact that it's a surprise, something unexpectedly touching and seemingly spur of the moment?

A quick, and unofficial, survey of some of my male friends and co-workers showed that the majority of guys who were in relationships, serious or otherwise, felt that they were expected to not only do something special on February 14, but that it had to be somewhat extravagant.

Now from the female point of view, yes, it's nice to feel appreciated every now and then - however, if your boyfriend feels obligated to do it just because of the date, doesn't that cheapen the act?

As one of my friends said “As much as I hate it, I'm locked in. since I'm with someone. It's like this official "you have to do something extra today" day with no real meaning as far as I can tell.”

But, like he said, he's locked in.

So then comes the difficult part - what to do, and what to buy. There's always the chocolate and rose standby, but that's hardly a surprise, especially if you're going for romance. So if you're stuck on what to spring for, why not take a look at helpaguybuy.com, a site launched by Wal-Mart last year to help guys chose the right gift. Simply answer a few questions and the gift generator will match your girlfriend, sister, mothers' personality.

On the flip side, for the women who have a hard time buying for their men, take a look at helpachickpick.com, which was just launched this year and uses the same premise.

Now we're not going to say this thing is infallible (we entered my editors information and supposedly the most appropriate gift for her was an electric wine opener which I will wisely refrain from commenting on).

But at the very least, maybe it will give you an idea.
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