The Intangible Valentine

It begins in mid-January. On the radio, television, and internet. From every direction, we’re assaulted by ads for flowers, candy, cards, perfume, lingerie, furs, and jewelry (particularly the diamond variety). Want to show your love?  Well, you better open your wallet, pull out your credit card and buy, buy, buy.

Wait. Not so fast, love buns. According to a recent study conducted by Laurie Puhn Communications, that may not actually be what your significant other wants for Valentine’s Day at all.

The results of the study showed that what most women (ages 30-49) want for Valentine’s Day is simply rest and relaxation. Yup, a little R&R.

According to the survey:

• 72% of women want a day off from housework and/or childcare
• 14% of women want a special plan for dinner
• 9% of women want a gift
• 5% of women want ‘the horizontal tango’

And what about everyone else? Well, women over 50 or under 30, and men as a group, also rejected the usual store-bought gifts. The majority of respondents in those groups preferred a special plan for dinner. What, you say, men preferred dinner over the horizontal tango? Just goes to show, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Making his favorite recipe of chicken and dumplings might be all you need to do.

It seems money can’t buy you love after all. Imagine that. Valentine’s Day can come without ribbons. It can come without tags. It can come without packages, boxes or bags. Maybe love doesn’t come from the store. Maybe Valentine’s Day, perhaps, means a little bit more.

In light of those findings, I’d like to put forth the idea of the Intangible Valentine. Instead of buying a gift from the store, why not try doing something nice for your mate instead? Let them put their feet up, while you do the vacuuming for once. Play with the kids for a while and let them take a nice, hot bath or read a book. Help them with a project they could use a hand with and have been dying to finish. Get something done on the honey-do list that they’ve been nagging you about. Take some errands off their hands. Cook their favorite dinner and dessert. Let them pick the movie for once, even if it means sitting through that “action” flick, or that ten-tissue, tearjerker of a romance movie. Chances are, giving them a little attention, appreciation and recognition for all their hard work, love and support, might go farther than that bouquet or box of chocolates anyway.

So, what are you getting your significant other for Valentine’s Day?

2 thoughts on “The Intangible Valentine

  1. Could have some fun answering this question, but I’ll keep it rated PG. After 35 years of wedded bliss (have to say this else I’ll get in trouble), recent years have been “what do you want to do?”, followed by “I dunno, what do you want to do?” Last year taught me something. I lit a candle, popped a bottle of wine, and engaged in a human process many of us forget over the years. We talked. The wine flowed, the conversation livened, and the hours passed like when we were first married. Think I’ll do it again this year. Might lead to that 5% tango thing. Now … if I could only remember where I stashed those little purple pills.

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