The Dirtbag’s Valentine’s Day Gift Giving Guide

Valentine’s Day’s right around the corner and last week I was imagining if I had a girlfriend, what would I get her? Taking her out to dinner on Valentine’s Day’s too cliche. She’d want some sort of gear, no doubt about it, or maybe I’m delusional.The Dirtbag's Valentine's Day Gift Giving Guide

I mean come on, what girl wouldn’t want an ice axe, climbing helmet, trad rack, backcountry cook set, avalanche beacon…with a shovel, sleeping pad, or some other piece of gear that makes my heart start racing when I think about it. Not because of the hefty price, but because that means we can go on new adventures and explore more places together.

While I think giving a girl gear on Valentine’s Day would be a way of saying look at all the memories we get to make together, I guess I could see her thinking, or saying, it’s a little unromantic. Not to mention that it’d probably make her parents worry that I didn’t know how to properly “protect” and care for their little girl.

Google’s of no help either. I searched a couple G rated phrases and was surprised when retailers tried to convince me that every woman out there wants sexy lingerie, and shall we say sex items, for Valentine’s Day. Is this seriously what we’ve come to? A society where Valentine’s Day = sex. All of a sudden I bet that outdoor gear’s sounding more romantic and thoughtful than hey I got you this to put on to then take off within a couple minutes because you know…Valentine’s Day.

Finally I threw the question out to social media, asking the ladies about their favorite Valentine’s Day gift they’ve gotten. Responses trickled in and some of them were pretty simple and neat like: a bouquet of flowers accented with Black Diamond Stoppers and another was a burrito from her favorite burrito joint in Hueco Tanks after a long day of climbing. Then stories of travel and adventure came in: snowboarding in 14 inches of fresh powder, a surprise hike followed by a picnic in the snow, and even an engagement in Paris.

I guess Valentine’s Day gift giving isn’t as easy as it used to be in elementary school where a piece of candy affixed to an NBA Valentine’s card was totally acceptable and to my dismay, no one’s published a gift guide that lays out what’s customary for your relationship. Since there’s no gift guide because every relationship is different and special in its own way, why wouldn’t it be acceptable for me to give a girl some sort of gear?

You might give me a weird look and tell me she’s going to dump me because I decided to get her a bike rack to mount to the roof racks on her car, but deep down I’ll know she’d love it because one of our ideal dates is a day riding our mountain bikes on single track. Then again I’d probably give you a weird look if you told me you bought your significant other an expensive piece of jewelry that’s probably worth more than my car, but deep down you can’t wait to see the sparkle in her eye as she puts it on and the two of you head out to dinner.

Every relationship has their norm’s and I think that makes each relationship unique and beautiful in its own way. It’s like what my friend Jeff said:

Do what you love…and the love will follow

Bottom line–I can’t wait to give a girl some sort of gear for Valentine’s Day, her birthday, Christmas, heck or just because it’s Wednesday. Come to think of it, I’ve heard girls mention they love getting a handwritten note and flowers…

Happy Valentine’s Day…or Singles Awareness Day!

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