The florist in my neighbourhood was ready for the celebration of San Valentine?s day with the most attractive showcase ever along with many bouquets of flowers and baskets with plants that filled the shop. Meanwhile, next-door, the greengrocer woman advertised that she would have strawberries with chocolate to sweeten the celebration. It was Monday, four days before the day and I felt fed up with so many offers and advertisements everywhere.

If you, dear readers, have any email account and likewise, and you participate in any social-networking, it is very probable that your inbox has been flooded by these marketing campaigns. The kind of suggestions you will have received will depend on what the analysts of data considered appropriate according to your preferences; so, yours may not be the same as mine. This time my inbox was full of other suggestions, very different from the traditional advertisements of perfume on TV, those aimed at all kinds of women (however they feel or how their partners consider them their personalities to be; adventurous, sweet, elegant, ambitious, naughty, juvenile and so on).

The site where I buy ink for my printer pointed out that printers could be a great present; a famous coach took the chance to publicize his books at the same time as another advertised his mindfulness courses as a perfect gift. All of these, without getting into offerings revolving around experiences such as a romantic evening in a cosy restaurant, a weekend lost in nature and an afternoon spent in a spa with a free massage thrown in, to name but a few.

I am not sure if you were, like me, sick and tired of so many suggestions or if, on the contrary, you were glad because you were looking for a special present to surprise your partner. It maybe because I am not in love that I haven?t given nor got any presents, and as a consequence of that, these advertisements bother me. All of us agree that this kind of celebration is used to stimulate consumption; my question is why do we, even with this knowledge, buy gifts anyway. Or on the other hand, do we just give presents as a way of expressing our feelings.

Dear readers, what is your story? Do you buy gifts on special dates? How have you celebrated Valentine?s day?

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