Valentine’s Day Confessions of the Romantically Challenged!

NOTE: I’ve run this article in the past on different websites and in various newspapers.  It’s always a hit so I decided to run it again while adding a story or two I’ve heard since first publishing it.  Enjoy!!

Given that Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, we are in the midst of a very precarious and potentially dangerous period of time for any guy that is involved in a relationship.  I say this because history has shown us that, despite our best intentions, guys have occasionally been known to show their love on Valentine’s Day in ways that wind up doing more harm than good.  At the suggestion of both my wife and of a good friend I’ve decided to put together some valuable tips on the “Do’s and Do nots” of how to express your love for that special someone on Valentine’s Day.

To find the content for this piece, I decided to send out a request to a bunch of people I know as well as Tweeting to my followers asking them to offer me examples of the Valentine’s do’s and do nots that they have personally experienced.  I received a number of responses and from that I’ve decided to share with you some of the best.  The following examples are real, but the identities of the individuals involved have been changed to protect them from utter humiliation.  With that I’ll offer the following:


A woman who we will identify as BRIAR shared with me how someone suggested to her beloved that rose petals on the bed can make for a romantic setting on Valentine’s Day.  Looking to try something new, he loved the idea and then went to purchase a bag of rose petals and when he got back he placed the petals on their bed.  Later on when BRIAR arrived home, he asked her to come upstairs.  She walked into the bedroom and couldn’t help but grin…but sadly, it was for the wrong reasons.  While she thanked him for the lovely gesture, she offered to him that the rose petals are more effective if they are actually taken out of the bag and then spread around instead of simply being left in its packaging.  I am told that his only comment after being told that was “This should come with instructions!”


I also heard from THESPIAN who offered an emphatic warning to other guys to make sure that you know the schedule of your beloved before deciding to do anything extreme.  He confessed to me that a few years back he thought it would be cute to come home early on Valentine’s Day dressed in costume as Cupid to surprise his wife (Yes, I’m scratching my head too over that one).  It turns out that while she was usually home alone most afternoons, on that particular day 2 of her friends from down the street were over for coffee.  Apparently this incident is still talked about at all the community BBQ’s and Christmas parties and he gets the odd request to don the costume for special events.


Next I heard from both SKEETER and PUCKHEAD who urged other guys to not be so easily drawn to chocolate when thinking about that perfect expression of your love.  Despite the huge popularity of chocolate as a Valentine’s gift they each shared with me how not all women view chocolate in the same way.  Thinking they were doing a good thing each told stories of how their Valentine’s opened their gifts of chocolates and then looked over to say “Chocolate?!  Are you trying to get me fat or something?!!”

The similarities of their stories end here though as PUCKHEAD was smart enough to retreat and admit the error of his ways.  Sadly the same can’t be said of SKEETER who tried to defend himself by telling her “No honey, not at all.  However I’d be happy to buy you a Gym Membership if you want!”


Not long ago I had someone who works at a local home improvement centre tell me about a rather hillarious situation she witnessed while at work.  A gentleman who shall go by the name ROMANTIC RENO came into the store saying he wanted to pick up a half-gallon of paint for his Valentine.  While this seemed like a very odd gift, the staff gladly helped him out.  It was only after selecting the colour and getting ready to mix when they realized what was going on, since when they asked ROMANTIC RENO what type of finish he would like instead of saying Eggshell or Matt, he answered…EDIBLE.  After painfully keeping in a major laugh attack, they kindly directed him to the adult erotic store nearby.


After reading this next story I really felt sorry for BEATNIK who told me that one year for Valentine’s Day he bought his wife an assortment of gourmet coffee beans since he and his wife are both big fans of coffee.  In theory this was a great gift, however he sadly never realized that due to her being pregnant even the mere smell of coffee now made her completely nauseous.


Lastly I wanted to mention something that I personally observed a couple years back that just seemed weird to me.  Leading up to Valentine’s Day there was a certain retailer of “Things that are being liquidated” who decided to run a radio campaign encouraging people to buy their loved ones gifts from their store.  Now don’t get me wrong…I’m all for a good bargain when I can find one but there was something about the nature of this ad that seemed strange.  Maybe it was just me but between the lines of script it almost seemed like they were implying “Hey, if you’re a cheapskate…why not shop here!”  While I personally took a pass, I presumed that they in fact knew what they were doing since I heard the same ad a year later.

So there you have it!  While there is no magic formula regarding how to do it right and there are people who likely know far more about this subject than me, I hope that these testimonials have given you enough insight to prevent you from getting into trouble despite your best intentions of showing your love.  If not, my advice would be to make sure you have a “Get out of jail, free!” plan lined up and ready to go just in case.

Eric Novak

About Eric Novak

Eric Novak is a father of 4 who also thinks that environmental stewardship is a requisite of parenting. He's not a professional Dad nor is he an environmental scientist, but he's someone who gives a damn and is trying to make the right decisions as he lives his life as a father, environmentalist and business owner. Eric and his wife Karen have 4 children and reside in Ajax, Ontario.