If you live in our fair part of the world, eastern Massachusetts, you probably have aching muscles and a slight aversion to hot chocolate, with all the snow shoveling you have had to do the last few weeks (and yes, we are having yet another blizzard today!). But today is Valentine’s Day and it’s like your US mail carrier’s unofficial motto: Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds – Valentine’s Day doesn’t take a snow day!
Since so many of you will have a fun day planned or a romantic dinner or perhaps even a snow shoveling date, here are 10 fun Valentine’s Day facts for you, just in case you need a conversation spritzer! (We like to help with more than just what you wear for Valentine’s Day…)
- For you young ladies out there, tell your guys they better up their game! There are 119 single men—never married, widowed or divorced—in their 20s for every 100 single women of the same age!
- For men who don’t live in Wales, be glad you don’t – at least on February 14th! It is a Welsh tradition to make an intricately carved spoon as a token of your love. You don’t have to do it every year but depending on your carving skills, it could certainly keep one monogamous!
- Ladies, we don’t get off the hook that easily either. In Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea, we traditionally have to give dark chocolates to men. On second thought, that’s much easier than carving a decorative spoon!
- Thirty-six million heart shaped boxes are sold each year for Valentine’s Day. So if you didn’t get one, don’t fret – it just means you are special and your sweetheart didn’t want to get you something 35,999,999 other people got!
- Eight-five percent of Valentine’s Day gifts are bought by women (Of course! We are the more thoughtful gender) but each man spends about double the amount on his gifts (Okay, okay… Men win on the generosity front!)
- Twenty percent of people wait until the last 48 hours before to purchase a Valentine’s Day gift. I bet I could replace “20% of people” with “50% of men” and still be 90% accurate!
- Teachers receive the most Valentine’s Day cards, followed by children, mothers, wives, sweethearts, and… pets! That’s right, pets. I’m happy to hear that students are showing teachers how much they are loved! If you don’t have a valentine to give a card, think about sending one to our troops. Just Google “Valentine’s for troops” and you can select from one of several organizations that provide this service.
- Cut flowers have an average shelf life of 10 days from the time they are harvested. So make sure you enjoy them while you can! Here are a few tricks to make them last longer: 1) Cut the stems at an angle under water: (cutting the stem is like cutting skin – it’s a wound and the plant wants to scab over to protect itself. By cutting at an angle, the plant will not be able to close the entire stem and it can still intake water). 2) Add a little 7-up or Sprite to the vase water – this will add both cleaners and nutrients for the plant. 3) Add a few drops of bleach or rubbing alcohol to kill the bacteria.)
- Twenty-nine percent of men say Angelina Jolie is their valentine dream date; 22% of men say they would hang with Zooey Deschanel. Forty-four percent of women say George Clooney is their dream date, with 24% choosing Ryan Gosling. Now, this survey was done in 2012, so goodness knows what they might be today!
- Men who kiss their wives in the morning live five years longer than men who don’t. So guys, pucker up! Your lives depend on it!
Bonus fact #1: Our brains have special neurons that help us locate each other’s lips in the dark. Now why don’t our brains have special neurons to help us locate furniture in the dark so we aren’t always running into it?!
Bonus fact #2: The unofficial post office motto cited in the first paragraph is really the inscription on the New York City Post Office on 8th Avenue in Manhattan. It is derived from from Book 8, Paragraph 98, of The Persian Wars by Herodotus, written sometime in the 450s to the 420s BC.
That’s it. Happy Valentine’s Day!