Tips for men on Valentine's Day

Valentine’s Day is less than a week away. I usually try to give men a few tips on how to survive this very important occasion. One slip-up can be very costly.

First, when purchasing the Valentine’s card, actually read the verse and be sure it applies to your relationship. Do not buy one based on price alone. Often, men make the mistake of buying a humorous Valentine card which can be dangerous. Believe it or not, some things men find hilarious are not funny to women at all.

Maybe you have decided to buy chocolates. Do not buy the boxes of chocolates next to the grocery store checkout. Your lady has seen them and knows they are cheap and on sale. You have to go to a specialty chocolate store, in a mall or in some trendy little village.

The chocolates aren’t that different but the box and bag will have the store name on them and this shows you put some thought into it. When the clerk rings them up and says, “That will be $25.70, please,” you must resist the urge to blurt out, “You’re kidding, for a box of chocolates?” It is all about sentiment, and romance is expensive.

Flowers are a nice touch and you can’t go wrong with roses. You may be tempted to go with a big colourful arrangement, but admit it men, no matter how long you have known this woman, you have no idea what she is allergic to and you don’t want her clogged up and sneezing for three days. Those will be long days for you. Also, pay the extra and have them delivered; she will like it when the neighbours see that.

Lingerie can be a very tricky purchase. Many men are drawn to the trashy Playboy bunny items but you are wise to go with the more elegant Victoria’s Secret fashions. You are sending a message here, and you don’t have Hugh Hefner’s money.

When it comes to size and you are trying to decide between the 8-10 or 10-12, choose the 6-8 and get a gift return receipt. It is much safer to say, “Wow, I was sure you were no bigger than a six,” rather than, “Holy cow, I thought 12 would be plenty big enough. “

Dinner and a movie is a great idea but, for Pete’s sake guys, make a reservation. Too many men assume that they are the only ones who thought about taking their lady out on Valentine’s Day. If you can walk in and say, “Smith for two at six o’clock,” and be whisked away to your table, all the other wives jammed into the restaurant foyer will be giving their spouses the glare. You know the one.

When choosing the movie find the one advertised as “Mother reconciles with estranged daughter who has leukemia, a love story for the ages.” Resist buying tickets for the one with “Thrill a minute action and car chases.” That could result in a very quiet ride home.

Let’s recap. Card presented in bed, chocolates and lingerie placed on the dining room table with a note about the dinner reservations, roses delivered about an hour before you come home, hold her hand in the movie when she starts to cry, tell her you love her.

Remember, this one day can set the stage for the rest of the year. At least that’s what McGregor says.

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