Aspen Princess: OK, fellas, I’ve got you covered … you’re welcome | AspenTimes.com

Aspen Princess: OK, fellas, I’ve got you covered … you’re welcome

Alison Berkley Margo
The Aspen Princess

I think we can all agree: Valentine's Day is a stupid, if not infuriating holiday.

Just because she says that doesn't mean you're off the hook. In fact, if you haven't figured out yet that women often say the exact opposite of what they mean, then you're in for a long, hard road, brother.

Listen, I'm always willing to give men the benefit of the doubt. Some guys honestly don't know any better and sometimes they need a little guidance, a little training, if you will. The key is their willingness to learn and their desire to make the woman in their life happy. If you are with a guy for whom your happiness is not a top priority, cut him loose now before it's too late. Take it from me: in Aspen, it's easy to lose a decade of your life just like that, dating guys who care more about what type of wax they need on their skis than what they're going to get you for Valentine's Day. Newsflash: these guys are never going to change. If you don't believe me, walk into any bar and survey the number of men over 45 who are still single, partying and for whom skiing is still a No. 1 priority. Anywhere else it would be sad. Here, it's grounds for bragging rights, especially if they have more 100-day pins than they do notches in their bedpost.

At the end of the day, this isn't rocket science, guys. It's OK to be cliche. This is no time for originality. As much as you've been wanting to replace her old avalanche transceiver or have the oil changed in her car, this is not the time or the place. As complicated as your woman might seem, it's actually a lot simpler than you think.

That is why I bring you: the Princess's Valentine's Day Survival Guide.

No. 1: Yes, flowers are a must.

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This is ever so simple, yet somehow even the best guys have had their epic fail in this category. The excuses are always the same: the day got away from me, I forgot it was Valentine's Day, I didn't order them in time, and so on and so forth. Guys: no one wants to hear it. It's not hard to buy flowers. You can get them at any grocery store. Yes, roses. No bouquet, straight roses and buy at least a dozen. Definitely get red and if you go for a second dozen (which I highly recommend for impact) you can play with different colors. No, she doesn't care where they come from, as long as it's the first thing she sees when you walk through the door. Extra points for scraping off the price tag, putting them in a vase or buying them from a real florist who can do a nice presentation for you.

No. 2: Chocolates are nice, but dinner is even better.

She may say she doesn't care, but every woman is secretly wishing that for just one night, she won't have to plan a meal, cook it and clean up afterward. It's super nice if you can take her out, though Aspen's crazy prices and prix-fixe menus can be a hassle for locals who would rather not pay double-full-retail for a meal out. The good news is, all the supermarkets have your back with delicacy ingredients just for the occasion: lobster tails, crab legs or nice cuts of steak should do the trick. Even better, these are relatively easy to prepare. Extra points for chocolate-dipped strawberries and salad with arugula.

No. 3: Spoil her with a special treat.

Hard to plan a romantic evening with the kids? You have to work nights, are scheduled for a double or a long day shift? No problem. Have those roses delivered to her home or office (it will cost more, but trust me when I tell you that you get what you pay for). Better yet, plan something for later: a gift certificate for a massage or spa treatment, a day trip to the hot springs, a credit for a mani-pedi. The key here is to give her something she wouldn't buy for herself, something that makes her feel pampered or spoiled. As much as she loves being active with you and would probably have fun on that hut trip, she'd like a massage a lot more, and a hut trip is kind of the opposite of that if you think about it.

No. 4: It doesn't have to be expensive, but it has to be something.

Homemade cards are cute but trust me when I tell you that a few sentiments scribbled in crayon on paper out of your printer tray probably aren't going to cut it. And good god, man, whatever you do, don't come home empty-handed. I know the ski bum life isn't the most lucrative (trust fund notwithstanding) but at the very least, grab a few of her favorite things: her favorite beer or wine, her favorite candy, and yes, those god damned roses from City Market. (Whole Foods is also having a sale on roses right now, so no excuses).

No. 5: Even if she says she doesn't care, she does.

This is the most important advice I can give. You can fool yourself all day long with a narrative that goes something like, "My girl doesn't care about that stuff, she's cool, she's real, she's not into the whole Hallmark holiday racket." Newsflash: if you walk through that door without at least a dozen roses, you're in for a little wakeup call. Yup, even you, guy who has been married for 15 years. You should know better by now.

I know, it's supposed to be about sharing the love, but I think we all can agree whether it's a bunch of B.S. Hallmark holiday or not, this is no time to expect the unexpected — unless it means going for that second dozen roses.

The Princess hopes her husband reads this in time. Email your love to alisonmargo@gmail.com.

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