Valentine’s day is another one of those occasions during the year that lack detailed planning. I have never seen Valentine’s Day identified as a separate expenditure on a family budget. It’s a bit like birthdays. We wait until the event arrives and make a quick decision.

Sometimes this shrug of the shoulders at the last minute ends in the deep end of the red ink well. Roses tend to top the list as the mainstay gift or love token as retailers propel the price for this one day frenzy up to the highest regions of the stratosphere. How many times do you see people scramble frantically into the grocery stores or florist shops from 4:30pm to 6pm ready to pay any price for the roses?

This does not quite fit the definition of an impulse buyer because they have known for a week or more that V day was coming. Why did they wait ‘till the last minute? I hate to say it, but I think many of these people fall into the category of the uncertain. Maybe their hearts are no longer beating as one with their spouses or partners. They’re definitely not the committed.

According to recent studies as reported in the Vancouver Sun, the average Canadian spends $135 on their sweethearts. If you add lingerie and chocolates to the price of roses you would be getting up to there.

Another interesting element to Valentine’s day is how many people want to prove themselves in public of their love by sending the dozen or more roses to the office for all to see. Not sure what that means, but there is an ostentatious quality to it. The recipient as much as the sender seem to want to prove beyond any doubt that their love is, well, you know, better than those who don’t get the roses at the office.

It appears that the majority of Canadian women prefer a restaurant dinner (according to Ipsos, 58%) over any other gift. Going to a movie ranks third at 33%. Meanwhile chocolates and flowers level off at 20 -25%.

What I like about Valentine’s Day is how we stop the world for a few minutes and recognize our loved one in a romantic way. We say thank you in a grateful and amorous way. We remember that our spouses and partners really are our most significant other. For a few moments, we embrace love itself – caring and giving for the special people in our lives.

Cooking a wonderful supper at home qualifies as an act of love, too. So, Happy Valentine’s Day to everyone’s special person of love.

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