Sunday, February 02, 2014

buy my valentine

I was at the card store the other day, looking for an anniversary card for my parents, birthday cards for a couple of friends and also for my cousin. I was also looking for a Valentine card for my husband. Finding the right card is harder than you might think, considering how many there are on the shelves.

Andy and I don't buy presents for one another for birthdays, Christmas or Valentine's. We sometimes go on a trip together, or get something nice for the house, and that's our gift to one another. We do buy each other cards. Usually, I can find a suitable birthday card for him. For some reason, I have a more difficult time with Valentines.

Here' a list of some of the unacceptable Valentine cards that seem to prevail on the card store shelves:

  • Too many words - This is the mushy Valentine card that has 2 or more panels of mushy talk. Often it folds out like an accordion, to accommodate several short paragraphs of sweet thoughts. It's all very nice, but usually at least some of what it says is not what I want to say, and the on-and-on-and-on sentiments feel like they are trying too hard. A message of love should be loving, to the point and brief.
  • Short story of a silly dog, cat, elephant, etc. - This one features a couple, usually cartoon animals, with a short story of the card-giving spouse's shortcomings: "I know you think I spend too much time at the mall, and my cooking is not any good at all. You help me out when I break a nail, and you bail me out when I'm stuck in jail..." It ends happily with the card-giving spouse expressing gratitude to the card-receiving spouse for putting up with him/her for all these years! Ug.
  • Ones that are the shape and size of a cheque. I know there are birthday cards shaped like this, meant specifically for enclosing cash or a cheque. I don't think anyone puts money in a Valentine, so I wonder why they make Valentine cards in this shape?
  •  Sexy-rude Valentines - I just do not understand these.
  • Valentine cards made so that you can't write your own message inside - A card should have space and a paper surface so you can write your own little love note inside where you sign the card. Some cards have a shiny surface that resists pen ink, or no discernible space for a personal message. Are these meant to be sent anonymously?
  • Insulting Valentine Cards - some insult the giver, some insult the receiver. I find both totally insulting to everyone. A Valentine should be lovey-dovey.
  • Valentine cards meant to be given to or from pets - believe it or not, these are available: "Happy Valentine's Day from your Cat." Meow.
  • Musical Valentine Cards - not many words, but a big blast of computer chip music when you open the card. This almost always startles me. Nobody wants to be startled on Valentine's Day.
  • A chimpanzee in a pink dress or a tuxedo - yuck.
I am re-reading this and hoping that Andy doesn't read it and feel intimidated to buy me a card this year. Apparently I am discerning to the point of snobbishness when it comes to Valentine cards.

So here is what I like to find, when I am looking for a Valentine to give to my sweet heart:
  • A short, heart-felt message of appreciation and love.
  • Preferably Valentine colours - red, pink, white, purple
  • Preferably costing less than $5. Cards are expensive!
 Eventually, I found a very nice Valentine card for Andy. It took me longer than I thought. I don't mind. I love him very much!

question: have you found a Valentine for the one you love?

mompoet - NO chimpanzees in pink dresses please

No comments: