Ask Austin: The senior who tells it like it is

Austin B.

Senior Managing Editor

Valentine’s Day Dilemmas

“Dear Austin: I have no idea what to get my significant other for Valentine’s Day; any ideas?”

Dear Troubled Tyler: Valentine’s Day is a very difficult holiday for boyfriends/girlfriends and husbands/wives. However, there are some simple solutions to the ever-present problem of finding the perfect gift for one’s significant other. First, think about what this person enjoys: hobbies, athletics, movies, music, etc. For example, for people who like Friday night movie nights, go out and compile a playlist of her favorite movies. If she likes listening to music, go buy some of their favorite CDs (or if you are feeling especially romantic, write and play your significant other one of the songs you love to listen to together). Some advice for the guys: ladies almost always love jewelry and flowers. If you cannot think of a gift to give based on interests, ask your girlfriend’s friends what she would be happy to receive; guys and girls alike have a habit of sharing what they want. A more direct way of deciding upon a gift is to take your girlfriend window shopping. While walking through a mall, people are very vocal about the items they find and like, which can tell you exactly what your girlfriend wants. Finally, the perfect secondary gift, or primary if you choose, is a box of chocolates. Not only does almost everyone love chocolates, it also sends a message along the lines of “you do not need to worry about what you eat,” which everyone loves to hear.

“Dear Austin: I don’t know what to do with or where to take my girlfriend on Valentine’s Day.”

Dear Planning Paul: Planning is a huge problem, specifically for guys on Valentine’s Day. One of the oldest and most successful dates is going to dinner and a movie; what girl does not love free food and a movie? From personal experience, I can recommend visiting Ghirardelli for dessert, for their sundaes are irresistible. Another romantic idea would be to stay in and make dinner for her. A candle-lit dinner is romantic enough, but the fact that you made it yourself will only make it more special because most every girl likes a guy who can cook. A more unique plan would be to take her to a concert. Find out a couple of her favorite musicians/bands and find out when they are performing in town (if you find that they are in town a week or so later, get the tickets anyway; Valentine’s Day is made up anyway, so it can be rescheduled).

“Dear Austin: I don’t have a significant other to spend Valentine’s Day with; what can I do?”

Dear Lonely Lucy: As stated earlier, Valentine’s Day is a made up holiday anyway, so it does not even really need to be celebrated. However, should you decide to make the most of the Hallmark holiday, one way you could go about it would be to spend it with other single friends. Just because the day is about being romantic with your significant other does not mean you cannot spend it with other people you love. If you are feeling especially daring, you could throw a party and invite anyone who is willing to come, and you are bound to have a blast meeting new people and spending time with your favorite friends. However, if you decide you do not want to go out, you could always get yourself a box of chocolates and watch a few movies at home.

“Dear Austin: My friend wants me to hang out with her on Valentine’s Day, but I want to spend it with my boyfriend; what should I do?”

Dear Considerate Callie: It is completely understandable that you want to spend time with your boyfriend on Valentine’s Day. The easiest solution to the problem would be to just be honest and straight-forward with your friend: tell her you want to spend it with your significant other. However, if you are worried about hurting her feelings, there are other resolutions. If your friend is single and open to the idea, you could try to turn your date with your boyfriend into a double date by finding a date for your friend. It may not be the easiest of tasks, but it will make it possible to spend time with them both. If your friend is not open to this plan, you could attempt to convince her to spend it with her other friends. If after trying all of these, nothing has changed her mind, offer to spend the first half of the day with her and the latter with your boyfriend; this way is one you may have to suggest to your significant other first, but if all goes well, everything could work out.

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