Rafi Mohammed

The Annual Valentine's Day Blog

Posted on February 9th, 2009 (0 Comments)

Yet another Valentine’s Day is upon us and it’s an opportunity for me to delve into one of my favorite topics: the intersection of love, value, and of course…price. Go ahead and laugh, but this mixture of topics stirs up strong emotions amongst those who I discuss it with…even the Wall Street Journal picked up my blog on this very topic a few years ago.

This year I sent the following questions to women friends of mine as well as asked my male friends to infer how they felt the women in their lives would feel:

You are about to get engaged and have $10,000 to spend on a ring. Would you prefer a ring from Tiffany (blue box, but a lower quality diamond that is valued at $7,500) or Costco (better quality diamond that is valued at $12,500)?

Which Valentines Day gift would you rather receive? (A) $100 box of Godiva chocolates or (B) $15 box of See's candies with a heartfelt love note attached?

Which Valentines Day gift would you rather receive? (A) $150 well-designed bouquet of flowers delivered to her office or (B) $10 bundle of roses from the local supermarket with a heartfelt love note attached?

Just the very topic arched the backs of many recipients. Several friends from the Midwest bristled at the notion of the materialism that I was implying. Conversely, a Hollywood executive called me “cheap” and suggested that women would rather have something in a little ‘blue box’ instead of having to sign a ledger from the Costco delivery service truck.

I found the results from women surprising. Quite simply, I would have never predicted the answers of these women who I’ve known for many years. More interestingly, there was no pattern to the answers of each recipient. Women I knew to be cost conscious answered most of the questions in the way I expected (Costco, See’s) and then out of left field would opt for the $150 bouquet delivered to their office. With chagrin, I must admit that I got every answer wrong for someone who had been in my life for many years (and I really thought I was in tune with these issues). Interestingly and just as surprising was that the vast majority of men answered Costco, See’s, and Supermarket roses. Guys, trust me, I’ve reviewed the survey results and you are way off base.

Yet another Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus moment.

My advice to guys under the gun to find the right Valentine’s Day present for their significant other is to understand that much like value, the right token of love is in the eye of the beholder. In other words, taking the time to both l-i-s-t-e-n and u-n-d-e-r-s-t-a-n-d what your significant other values is critical to making this upcoming holiday a success.

So what do you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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