Valentine’s Day: How Are You $pending It?

This blog usually tackles subjects the team at Morrissey & Company is passionate about: public relations, social media, reputation communications, mobile marketing and media relations, among other related topics.

But tomorrow it’s Valentine’s Day, so I’m throwing caution to the wind, setting aside convention and counting on your sense of fun to permit a temporary detour from the norm to share a few thoughts on ways to spend the most romantic of holidays.

For most of us (and I’m talking about us guys), each year it’s the same deal.  How much of a fuss should we make out of Valentine’s Day.  Most guys over think this holiday.  And it doesn’t matter if your newly dating or been married for a long long time.  Guys definitely feel the pressure and our significant others definitely measure our treatment of Valentine’s Day with the progression of the relationship.

My advice?  Relax.  Try to not read too much into this holiday.  After all, it’s meant to be a fun, romantic holiday.

So, as a public service, I’ve digested and then sorted out some of the best professional and informal advice on how to enjoy this Valentine’s Day.

Here goes:

Many of the articles and promotions I’ve seen encourage us to dine out on Valentine’s Day.  Duh.  For this reason, many restaurants will be jammed tomorrow night and you’ll wind up waiting for your table — reservations or not.  Actually, without reservations, I’d reconsider.

And to be honest, dining out — at least in a formal, full-service restaurant — isn’t for everyone on Valentine’s Day. If you’re in a new relationship, reconsider your plans to dine out at a formal restaurant because a Valentine’s Day dinner is brimming with pressure and future expectations.

Instead, consider a movie.  There are a number of “couples” movies playing at your local AMC Loews.  Check out “The Vow,” based on the true story of a newlywed couple recovering from an accident and how their love is tested as a result.  Or “The Artist,” an Oscar-nominated film about a silent movie idol and a star-struck extra and aspiring actress.

For the more adventurous and if you and your date are reasonably athletic, consider an ice-skating date.  The Boston Common Frog Pond is a great take and you and your better half are on the ice for $10 (+ $9 per skate rental).  And here’s a listing of other rinks in case you’re not in Boston.

Following a movie at the AMC located at  175 Tremont Street in Boston, or once your lower back is aching after a few trips around the Frog Pond, you might head toward nearby Boylston Street for a delicious and affordable bite and refreshment at Four Burgers — comfortable surroundings without the pressure of white linen.

For those of you who, like me, are in a serious relationship (longer term dating, engaged or married) remember that you don’t have to save Valentine’s Day to treat your special someone in a special way.  A friend of mine (now divorced, so perhaps he learned the hard way) said, “Always assume it’s your first year of marriage and that EVERYTHING matters.”

Dinner out is almost always a good idea on Valentine’ Day when you’re in a longer-term relationship.  You don’t need to re-mortgage the house and dine at The Ritz, but wherever you decide to go, use OpenTable to make reservations.  It’s fast and easy, you don’t have to look up a restaurant’s phone number and you can read what others are saying about previous dining experiences.  If a table is available, OpenTable will let you know.

Like so many of our holidays, Valentine’s Day has been commercialized to excess. Companies who stand to gain a spike in Valentine’s Day sales — purveyors of sweets, flowers, jewelry and now smartphones, etc. —  have turned to social media and other forms of digital marketing, in addition to traditional media channels, to guilt us into spending more than necessary.

Don’t fall for it. However you decide to spend Valentine’s Day, and maybe it’s just dinner at home then plopping in front of the TV with your girlfriend or boyfriend, fiancée, wife or husband — just remember to enjoy the moment. Cupid wouldn’t want it any other way.

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One Response to Valentine’s Day: How Are You $pending It?

  1. I want a full report on Wednesday about The Vow. Bring your ticket so there’s proof you saw it!

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