Nothing says Happy Valentine’s Day like a …

I started rattling Better Half’s chain about Valentine’s Day around mid-January.

Being ever considerate, I wanted to give him a good month to angst and agonize over what to get me for Feb. 14, today.

This is the most wonderful time of the year, you know, unless I’m pressuring him about present possibilities for Christmas or my birthday.

Oh, the joy of it all.

My intent was to be helpful, of course, to offer suggestions or issue tender reminders.

What’s Papa Bear getting Mama Bear for Valentine’s Day?

He would give me this disconnected look, as if he had not the foggiest notion what I was talking about.

I don’t want you to be stressed or struggle over what to get me, I offered.

I’m not struggling, he assured me. I’m not getting you anything this year, he announced, rattling the newspaper he was reading for emphasis.

I decided that wasn’t a very bright idea on his part so I forged ahead with my campaign.

I whined a good bit about wanting a treadmill, Valentine’s Day or not, because when the weather is cold, Janice doesn’t want to go for a jog.

I am a winter weather wimp when it comes to outdoor exercise, unless you count a snow angel I made the other day, inspired by the horses rolling around in the accumulation.

He wasn’t impressed.

A treadmill is a big space hog, Better Half reasoned. Where would you put it?

Don’t you have enough places to hang up your clothes?

I hate it when he uses logic.

I switched gears, reminding him of his obligation, if not to me, then to readers who might want to know what he’s getting me.

I think I detected some sweat beads on his forehead as I reviewed the many cute and clever Cupid antics that I’ve shared with readers through the years.

— A big-screen TV. Nothing says love like getting the big picture together, right?

— Two shovels because he double “digs” me.

— A broom because I “swept” him off his feet. (It now has extremely high mileage from my witchy moments of flying around on it.)

— An electric pencil sharpener to make the “point” that I was his true love.

— A coffee pot that was “grounds” for marital bliss.

— Candy bars because he’s “sweet” on me.

— A dictionary to remind me that there aren’t enough words to declare his love.

— A one-of-a-kind potato, innocently plucked from the potato sack and intended for french fry glory.

This potato, however, was shaped liked a heart, I kid you not. On it, he carved our initials inside a heart he’d etched. He presented it to me on Valentine’s Day with his usual creative flair — “This ‘spud’s’ for you, honey,” he said.

— There was the year he “fell” for me — literally — on the ice on his way to buy me a present, so he claimed.

He ended up in the emergency room, returning home empty-handed, save for the doctor’s discharge instructions.

— A bag of carrots, which he said was healthier for me and way healthier for his wallet than anything with a lot of carats.

I got this year’s present early. No treadmill, alas, but a new lamp I’d been wanting.

The heart with it read “You light up my life.”

Now that was a bright idea.

(Kiaski, a resident of Richmond, is a staff columnist and community editor for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times. She can be contacted at jkiaski@heraldstaronline.com.)


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