I like an excuse to buy stuff for my guy. But it often leads to some amusing moments.
First, I make no excuse for liking cards by Hallmark, the more elaborate the better. I could buy gay-themed ones at local gay stores, but I find them tacky. And the gay X-rated ones aren't anything we'd want displayed around our home, since we have straight visitors, including our cleaning lady who enters all the rooms.
So I go to a particular Hallmark store and spend some time, because I want the sentiment expressed to be just right. So there I'll be, standing at the Valentine's card section for "Husband" and "For Him" reading all the cards, getting the oddest glances from the wives and girlfriends around me. LOL!
And I always get the traditional heart-shaped box of chocolates for him, and will also pick a male or husband decoration theme for the cover if they offer it. Once this place had wooden boxes with either a tuxedo cover, having an actual bow tie and the top part of a miniature dinner jacket with satin lapels, as if the Valentine's heart was wearing it, or else one with an evening gown, complete with corsage.
So I took the tux one (empty, to be custom-filled at the counter) from the special display and got in line to be served, the candy store crowded on Feb 13th, mostly men there. I got some funny looks from the other guys, in that very conservative upper-midwest city.
At the counter the woman said to me: "Sir, you've picked the box that a man gets. Would you like me to get you the one for a woman to receive, instead?" She happened to be the store owner, after whom it was named, and she actually hand-made most of the candies herself.
"No, thank you, this is the one I want." She gave me a very strange look, and for a moment I thought she was going to refuse to sell it to me.
But she did let me get it, perhaps not willing to pass up a sale of over $200, as I then selected which candies I wanted for it from the glass display case. And no, it wasn't a huge oversized box, just kinda standard size, but her chocolates were locally famous and a bit pricey (not to mention the special box itself, all covered in fabric), and for these better boxes you chose the variety inside them yourself.
My BF was delighted with it, BTW. And he knew the store, flattered that I hadn't bought him some cellophane-wrapped Fanny Farmer cardboard thing from a drugstore. And that the card I selected (again Hallmark) perfectly matched the box, as if they were a matched set.
And now I've gotta start getting my partner his Valentine's stuff, glad for this thread because I always forget these dates are approaching. As usual he'll get hand-made candy from a locally operated store (I could get Godiva from their own store at the Galleria here, but I prefer the local touch), the Hallmark card, perhaps a balloon, and a Valentine's stuffed bear, cause he loves bears and collects them. And then dinner, of course, with perhaps a more intimate gift presented at table.
I must admit I don't the like obligatory concept of St. Valentine's Day as it's become, so instead I try to think of it in terms of an opportunity, to do things for my guy that I might not otherwise do, but should. On balance I'm therefore OK with it.