It’s almost V-Day, and I figure it’s time for another post about living happily with your loving geek and/or nerd.
My wife, Amanda, is so far out of my league that it’s scary. I’m also incredibly lucky that she (for the most part) puts up with my various nerdy obsessions. She understand that I use gaming to unwind, and she knows that I’m going to go see the new Star Wars movies (for better or worse) at the earliest possible second.
She also knows that it’s fairly easy to make me a happy man on Valentine’s Day. Want to know her secret? I’ll give you a hint–it’s a secret that will work on everyone, not just geeks like myself. That’s right, keep reading if you want some good Valentine’s Day advice.
The real secret to the mushiest of all holidays does not necessarily require cliches like fancy dinners, flowers, chocolate, or cherubic baby archers (though all of those things can be nice). All you have to do to win the day is know your partner, then use that knowledge to make him or her happy.
Yeah, it’s pretty much that simple. Don’t overthink it.
Here’s how Amanda does it. She pays attention to what I like (which, as a nerd, I am pretty vocal about anyway), then makes sure that something she does for me or buys for me on V-Day matches.
For example, last year, one of her gifts to me was a pretty badass Nerf gun (double-barrel, loads six darts, and shoots far), which I keep in my desk at work. It’s awesome, and fit me perfectly. Hell, she even bought me an Indiana Jones hat once (which was for Christmas and was awesome).
She’s purchased video games for me (even though she’s not a fan), made me food (that she knows I like), and done all sorts of other good things that I’ve enjoyed immensely.
In the same vein, I pay attention to what she likes and wants, and give her gifts/do things for her accordingly. For example, last year I made sure she came home and had nothing at all to do. I ran home during my lunch break, left her a note (which I hung from the ceiling at her eye-level in the entryway to our house), and explained that she should get comfy and do nothing.
I took care of dinner (I got her a mini-corn-dog maker), entertainment, and general romanticizing for the evening. She loved it. See, I knew that her dream night (after a hard day of trying to teach a hundred kids or so) would primarily consist of her doing a lot of nothing, perhaps getting a massage, and general relaxation. That’s what she got.
Oh, and don’t forget to make damn sure your significant other knows exactly how much they mean to you. Don’t just buy stuff, don’t just make a nice dinner–tell that person how you feel. Don’t embellish, don’t get overly flowery, just be 100% honest and genuine. Be assertive and direct. I’m not saying that you should be mean and/or bossy. No, Valentine’s Day is the day you open up, let it all out, and speak from the heart. All the candy and heart-shaped candy boxes are clues.
So, if you want to win Valentine’s Day (which is a co-op game–when you win, so does your partner), just follow this simple guide: PAY ATTENTION TO WHAT YOUR SIGNIFICANT OTHER LIKES, then TELL THEM HOW YOU FEEL.
You don’t have to stick to any traditional notions of romance, because the most romantic thing you can do is to prove that you have intimate knowledge of your partner, can use that knowledge to make him or her happy, and then “share the love,” so to speak. See? Easy.
Oh, and get a card. Never forget the card.