I learned early on in our relationship that Better Half was not easy to buy for, the complete opposite of the consumer category he puts me in - the me, me, me, give me this, give me that division.
He never needs anything, so what do you get someone who claims to have everything and want nothing?
Buying him a present for Valentine's Day this Friday is as tough an undertaking as picking out a present for him for Christmas or his birthday.
To all such occasions that under normal circumstances with other couples would warrant the giving of a gift and the making of a fuss because it is a special observance, Better Half recites the same litany: "It's just another day, Janice. Don't make a big deal out of it."
A wave of his hand in the air dismisses any such notion into obscurity.
I am reluctant to accept that, even though in this case I know it to be true.
Now if a wife said that to her husband - "Honey, it's just another day. Don't make a big deal out of it" - the husband would be wise (and still breathing) to not take that at face value.
He had best do some research, do some shopping, do some spending, do some surprising.
Release the moths from the wallet and boldly buy!
Make a big old fuss.
I remember the year Better Half forgot my birthday.
Not a banner marital moment.
I was so mad, petty person that I am, but at first a little excited, thinking he was really planning a big surprise - but the big surprise ended up being that he really had forgotten my birthday, which is no surprise after all, honestly, because remembering dates is not his forte.
I have to say, though, that I was a tad incredulous that he could have forgotten such an important day in his history, the day that I made my earthly debut, an arrival that would one day make this wonderful difference in his life.
When Better Half realized he'd forgotten it, he was so sincere and sweetly apologetic about it, I couldn't stay angry about it too long.
He was just being himself.
And if memory serves me right, I ended up with some really great birthday gifts that year after all, extra compensation for the forgetfulness thing.
He came through on that birthday just as he's always come through on all of his well-thought-out and executed Valentine Day surprises for me.
But getting Better Half good gifts? That's a struggle.
I have bought him many awful presents all in the name of love.
You'd think Hallmark could at least come up with the perfect card for him for Valentine's Day - something sentimental like "Hey, it's just another daynot going to make a big deal out of it, but I love you."
(Kiaski, a resident of Steubenville, is a staff columnist and features writer for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and community editor for the Herald-Star. She can be contacted at email@example.com.)