Giving and Receiving Gifts on Valentine's Day - FAQ

Image Credit: Happy Valentine's Day '14 Saint Valentine's Day is upon us again, and with it comes the obligatory anxiety over dinner reservations, and gifts, and cards, and what to write in the cards, followed by the obligatory fights over dinner reservations, and gifts, and cards, and what was or was not written in the cards. It truly is a joyous day. Due to the many potential landmines involved with giving and receiving gifts on Valentine's Day, we here at the Dallas Comedy House would like to provide answers to some of the more common questions on this day of love and celebration.

Isn't Valentine's Day just a made-up, Hallmark holiday? Do I even have to do anything special for my girlfriend? Yes, and yes! While Valentine's Day is a holiday designed solely to reduce  our national  surplus  of chocolate hearts, treacly greeting cards, and small teddy bears, it is loved by many and here to stay. So do something nice for your girlfriend. Conform to the whims of society. You have 364 other days to be a bitter iconoclast. Fit in today.

Once again, I'm single on Valentine's Day. What do I have to do to get a gift? You don't have to do anything. You already have the greatest gift of all, the gift of eavesdropping. Valentine's conversations are often full of passive-aggression, thinly-veiled hostility, and unheard pleas for understanding. And you get to hear all of it.

Is a box of chocolates and a bouquet of flowers that I picked up on the way home from work the best way to tell my wife that I love her? You forgot a homemade card with a hastily written message full of platitudes. Add that to the mix and you have what we call in the Valentine's advice industry, "The Bare Minimum Triumvirate." The number of "Bare Minimums," given or received has risen sharply over the past 50 years and now represents more than half of all Valentine's Day gifts. In an odd coincidence, the national divorce rate has risen at the same rate over the same period.

This happens to me every year. I've been seeing this guy for a few weeks and I'm not even sure if we have a relationship. What should I give him?  Ah, the old unsure-of-our-status trap. Too nice a gift and he might think you're coming on too strong, causing him to freak out and flee. No gift and he might think you're not sufficiently interested, causing him to freak out and flee. Men are the worst. In a situation like this, there's only acceptable gift: alcohol. It's non-committal, non-romantic, and can be spun to match the level of relationship you're not sure that you have. You really can't go wrong with booze as a gift, unless you're dating a minor or a recovering alcoholic. For the artsy, creative type, try a six-pack of craft beer, say a Racer 5 IPA.  A  more sophisticated gentleman might prefer a bottle of high-end vodka, like Chopin.  For the life-of-the-party type, a nice bottle of Patron will make the evening into an adventure, one that could potentially define your relationship. Stay away from Jim Beam or Jack Daniels or really any branch of the whiskey tree, unless you want to end up crying on the sidewalk at 3AM listening to a series of brutal put-downs delivered under the guise of "jokes."

For three straight years, my girlfriend has given me the same gift: a restraining order. Is my relationship getting stale? Your relationship does not exist. Nor has it existed for at least three years. Take your "gift" at face value and accept the fact that she's moved on, you creep her out, and you will go to jail if you come within 500 feet of her. And, please, never contact me again. Happy Valentine's Day!

Ryan Callahan is a current DCH student who loves crime novels and pro wrestling. He’s the brains behind WikiFakeAnswers.