What is “Romance” and What Should You Do For Valentine’s Day

(With Valentine’s Day fast approaching what does “something from the heart” mean?)

Dates

Valentine’s Day is February 14th.

We place a large romantic importance on this arbitrary day, but it’s as much of a forced holiday as New Year’s Eve or a bachelor party. You can’t force fun much like you can’t force romance; these emotions have to be organic.

Valentine’s Day is obviously a lot more taxing for men than women, because men for the most part don’t really care about romance. Women are expected to do nothing that day except (cross your fingers) maybe buy lingerie. But the thing that card and candy companies don’t want you to know is that you can’t buy romance. True romance has to be specifically tailored to a girl, and that’s why only generalities can be given for advice.

Romance is organic. It’s more of a feeling than a tangible thing. We’ve been taught that it’s jackets laid down on puddles, ferris wheels, or making her walk on the inside of the street but it’s not. That’s a convenient itemized list, but romance is one thing that’s not universal. It’s about creating a feeling and that’s has little to do with your environment as much as it is about your intentions and the emotions involved. For example, pizza and a Netflix night can either be romantic or something you do with your buddies. Both are exactly the same venue and have exactly the same ingredients but the emotions involved are different. So when she says she wants “something from the heart”, she really just wants you to spend time with her and make her feel special. She wants you to make her feel like she’s the only girl in the world.

A lot of women say they hate Valentine’s Day but a lot of them secretly love it. And if they are the rare exception that does hate it, they are still aware of its presence and put a particular emphasis on it. The main thing a woman wants from a man that day is for you to spend time with her. Luckily for you and your wallet it doesn’t take a reservation at a fancy French restaurant for you to accomplish that. It can be something as simple as buying her flowers and cooking her dinner. That way you can also avoid overpriced menu specials and hackneyed cheese balls that propose by hiding engagement rings in flan. There’s a beauty in simplicity, and unless she’s the type of girl with an Instagram feed of 90% selifes she’s going to recognize your efforts. All you have to do is pay attention and be thoughtful to her, and you’ll make her feel special.

And then maybe she’ll bring out the lingerie.

[Photo: Robert Et Louise. A steakhouse in the Marais district of Paris, France.]

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