It’s a question I’d like to ask a few people, particularly because their approaches to the day were very different. As in, one person tried to be super frugal and another was a big spender. Personally, I ended up dropping about $50, which isn’t a ton of money but isn’t exactly frugal either. Kind of a middle ground situation, which probably fits well with many people
However, that wasn’t the case with the Cheapskate and the Big Spender. Here are their brief stories:
The Valentine’s Day Cheapskate
This person is a friend of mine, and a really good guy. He just doesn’t feel like spending money on Valentine’s Day, which doesn’t in any way make him less of a good guy, but it does make him more than a bit too frugal.
We were texting back and forth, and I joked to him something along the lines of “so, did you get the flowers and jewelry yet or are you procrastinating”. He wrote back that he wasn’t getting his wife anything for Valentine’s Day. Now, there isn’t any trouble in paradise there, it’s just that he’s not one to spend a lot of money or get caught up commercialism. I think he just takes a practical approach to things.
Anyway, I thought he was kidding but he wasn’t. He said that he’s gotten her flowers in the past but she never takes care of them and so they die quickly. Instead he had his kids make out cards for their mother, which were homemade and cost nothing. And, that was her gift. He did say that they were going out to a nice dinner the next night with another couple, but that wasn’t Valentine’s-related. Nevertheless, he considered to be expensive enough that he didn’t see the need to spend any more money on the weekend.
I find it a bit curious that he wouldn’t want to give her something to show love and appreciation. He’s been married for over 10 years, so his approach to things has had some staying power. If they’re happy, who’s to complain?
The Big Spender
Okay, this big spender wasn’t a man. Rather, it was a woman spending big on Valentine’s Day. As a disclaimer, it’s also not somebody I know at all. It’s actually a person whose (loud) conversation I overheard at lunch on Friday.
She was in line at a quick-casual lunch place, with a few male coworkers, and asked them what they were doing for Valentine’s Day. I was right behind them in line, so it was hard not to overhear what they were saying. One muttered something about not being sure, another said he was going out to a movie in the afternoon, to save money by seeing a Matinee. Obviously, I liked hearing that 🙂
The young woman, however, talked about going shopping. She said that she went out the night before and spend $300 on clothes, and had more to buy on Valentines Day itself. One of the guys looked like his face was frozen as he nicely blurted out, “Why?”.
To which she exclaimed with a gleeful smile and he eyes wide open with excitement, “because it’s VALENTINE’s Day!” She was so enthusiastic, like a kid in a candy store.
It hit me then that this day was like her Super Bowl. This was a day of the year for her that she just loved. Good for her, even if not so good for her bank account.
My Takeaway: People have wildly different approaches to Valentine’s Day. Some people try to avoid spending money and will even be cheap, while others want to splurge and pamper themselves (or have others pamper them). I prefer the middle ground, while skewing a bit toward the frugal side. However, whatever works for you and your significant other, it’s all good. There is no right or wrong, but it’s interesting to see how people can approach the day so differently.
My Questions for You
What did you do for Valentine’s Day?
Did you and your significant other splurge, or go on the cheap?
Do you think the people I talked about were too extreme in their approaches, or not?