You're running on empty, sucker punched by Cupid, and jumping at every sound so stop hiding under the bed and let someone else come up with Valentine's Day ideas for your girlfriend. To the world she's the sweetest thing but you know that a misstep on this day will unleash a Lovecraftian beast. Leave the heavy lifting to others just don't ever use that phrase when picking her up in a gentle embrace or you'll end up a eunuch by sunrise.
- Chocolates. Whoa, hold the snark there smart guy and let the education flow over you like a waterfall fueled by geniusness. Sure chocolate is a cliche and an old standby but this is only if you're buying it from the local mall. You need to step it up and invest some decent cash in chocolate as a Valentine's gift. First check the local area for chocolatiers, which are considerably different than 3 Musketeers. There are plenty of companies such as Vosges that blow away the barely food grade chocolate you've been slinging. Vosges does truffles like Satan does contracts: with supreme skill that makes it look effortless. Instead of killing your girlfriend's taste buds, wow her with infused chocolate truffles that have various essences as flavoring which means the various tastes hit the tongue and disappear, like an ethereal ghost just there for a moment. You don't need to change the game; you just need to start playing like you're a professional instead of a rank amateur.
- Dust yourself off. Although everything is one big storage area to you, chances are your girlfriend might feel a bit differently. So take the day off before Valentine's Day, borrow her car with a white lie and then get the car detailed, then go to her home and clean like a whirling dervish. The keys to cleaning are two-fold: 1. Vacuum then dust and 2. Move stuff. Yes, move furniture around to vacuum, lift books and other things up to dust. This doesn't offset a material gift for your girlfriend but it's one heck of an opening move.
- Cut the card. Gift cards are great when you're in a rush or live far away but for Valentine's Day you might as well say you've given up. Now's the time to laser focus your attention on things she mentions she likes or wants. Pay attention to the offhand comments she makes and you'll be able to wow her when Valentine's Day comes around and get to shrug it off like it was no work at all which makes you even more impressive.
- Violets are purple not blue. Grocery stores are where reckless buying decisions happen; so don't buy the terrible Valentine's Day flowers there. Take her favorite colors and scents and go to an actual florist. Now here's the trick, don't get a bouquet that's pre-made. That would be tossing glitter on the typical grocery store bundle of shame. Pick your flowers individually out until it resembles a decent bouquet and then let the florist add any little accoutrement that makes the bouquet look full and not bizarre. You're on track if your flowers don't come with a teddy bear or a "World's Greatest Girlfriend" mug. Time equals caring on Valentine's Day, unless you're doing hard time in which case you shouldn't be buying anything for your cellmate because that's sending all the wrong signals.
- Scent it up. For Valentine's Day you could get a refill on whatever perfume your girlfriend is running out of but is that really how you want to woo your lady love? Instead of taking the easy road and using the tried and true, buy her a new scent from up and comers such as Black Phoenix instead of worshipping at the altar of the typical perfume conglomerates. Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab has perfumes to match any personality and feature limited edition new perfumes as well as stories and themes to their olfactory magic. Read the stories, check out the ingredients and pick something perfect for your loved one. Include the story with it so you can explain why it made your heartstrings twang and reminded you of her.