Monday, October 12, 2009

Son of a Romantic

“Let’s get your mom some flowers.” It was this simple sentence, uttered by my dad, that began my informal education in romance. I was nine years old, and we were on our way home from an afternoon of errands. My dad stopped at a roadside flower stand, picked out a bunch and delivered them home to my mom. There were big smiles and generous hugs for the both of us.

Over the years, my dad taught me a lot about romance. Besides the valuable lesson in floriography, he instructed me to open car doors for dates, always pay the check and not to be shy about giving them my arm anywhere we walked. I witnessed my dad stop at the roadside flower stand many times. He would send my mom love notes. In both direct and indirect ways, my dad taught me how valuable a spontaneous romantic gesture could be.

A lot of my father’s playful, romantic side has been sewn into the fabric of my marriage. One of the first impressions that WonderWife™ says I made on her was the fact that I showed up at her door for our first date carrying a big bouquet of sunflowers. I try not to let too much time go by without a love note here or a text message there. With WonderWife™ it’s easy.

I can’t imagine being with somebody that didn’t stir my inner romantic side. Being romantic shouldn’t be a chore. Nor does it have to be done with big sweeping gestures. This is where TV and movies have steered us wrong. A room lit by 100 candles may be romantic, but, as I found out one night, it requires a lot of work to set them up and light them. Not to mention the time it took to blow them out later. Yes, candles are nice, but a simple note hidden in a conspicuous place can work just as well. The one that I left for WW™ in our kitchen pantry is still hanging there three years after I wrote it.

Romance is about surprise. It’s turning off the lights and throwing in a CD one evening. It’s having a picnic on the front lawn every once in a while, instead of dinner in front of the tube. Romance is most powerful when it’s unexpected. The best flowers you can give are on a random Tuesday, to let your partner know you’re thinking about them even during the ordinary, mundane times.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I’m Casanova. Nor am I implying that I am the most innovative romantic out there. There are sometimes long stretches that go by where the romance is pushed to the back by dirty diapers, doing the dishes or a new episode of Lost. But I’m wired in a way where if I can’t remember the last romantic gesture I’ve made, something in me clicks and puts a new one into motion. And there are some simple, proven gestures that always go over well.

To the ladies out there: romance doesn’t just fall to the guys. The same lessons apply. The fellas like a little attention as well. Everyone in a relationship should realize that romance doesn’t take a lot of effort, just a little bit of thought and planning.

I’m lucky to be the son of a romantic. The lessons from my dad have made a strong impact on me and helped me get the most out of my relationships. So when I’m out with the Bean doing errands, every once in a while I will lean over and say to him, “Let’s get your mom some flowers.”


wendy said...

First comment --simple and to the point. YOUR DAD TAUGHT YOU WELL---set a great example. Romance is spontaneous and the most unexpected little gestures as you said are the most FUN.
Oh yes, keep romance alive
(gotta go write hubby a note)

Anonymous said...

its also easy to do. When I used to be on the road 35 weeks of the year I'd sometimes send z postcard the first day and shed get it like wed. and I often would put little notes where I figured she'd find them throughout the week. Romantic stuff like, "I like you almost as much as deer hunting" or "you and a 6 pack are my fave meal"

Really though it isn't that tough, they don't require much, effort goes a long way.

Ladies, naughty texts (with pics) go a long long way!
If you find yourself unsure, send them to me first and I will proof em so you send your guy the best of the best!

Steph said...

Way to go DGB!! Flowers and notes go a long way to tell WW that you love her!!

Like Sage, my DH travels alot and when he's on the road, he calls every morning to tell me he misses me and the munckin.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

I'm in dreamland right now that guys actually do KNOW about that stuff!

That's what I'm always saying...surprise me! I love surprises, the unexpected, the small thought...the proof that the thought was about me...totally swooning right now.

Sage-..Even though ur "notes" were was adorable to read that u would do that for her...

ZenMom said...

Awwww. This was great. One of my new favorite posts. :)

Anonymous said...

Oh I'm a peach!!!

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Not all guys get it though... Its NOT easy for them.

Anonymous said...

I don't think anyone mistakes me for "all guys" or even any guy they know, or will ever know!

Just Jules said...

ok, this is gonna make my post tomorrow look horrible (is my post going up against this Shelle?) man, I am going to look heartless. However, even though you , and apparently Sage get it, not all men do.

Dearest used to do fabulous things like this- in fact just yesterday as I was going through my bible I found one such note from about 12 years ago - it was addressed in a nickname he used to call me. sweet. sigh.....

Kids, work, and stress have taken over since then. Every once in awhile he remembers. I try too.

Anyway - remember I am on the guys side with my post tomorrow... please don't think of me as a heartless wench when you read it.

Danielle said...

Umm, got a brother?

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Wendy...I think some people would be surprised that my dad is like that. You wouldnt' know it from interacting with him.

Sage...You are a diabolical genius.

Steph...I never let the night pass without saying "goodnight baby doll" to my wife. Even if I'm traveling and the last time I can call is nowhere near her bedtime.

Shelle...We're out there. We just have to be trained to do it. Otherwise us guys tend to grow up selfish.

Zen...Aw shucks. Now I'm blushing.

Jules...I agree, not all men do it. It's like the post I wrote on Hot Dads about not being handy with tools, cause I was never taught. Same with this stuff. Most guys, unfortunately, don't realize that small romantic gestures mean a whole lot more over the long haul than a box o' candy on V-Day.

Danielle...Sorry, no brother. And my sister is spoken for.

Missty said...

Great post! Romantic guys rock! But it is hard for some.

And thank goodness I have a romantic guy. He does do special little things every so often.

And I have told him - DON'T get me flowers on my birthday -its Valentines day. So expensive and just not a good day. So he doesn't. But he always does just whenever, so much nicer.

And of course I do things back. I have done the note thing in luggage or a pocket while he is on a business trip. Of course now with texting... all good with the pics or the sexy texts. He usually responds back with a "are you trying to kill me." lol

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Missty...I can't do sexy texts on my phone because my Blackberry is a work-issued device. Sigh.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

I use to think... maybe if I did those kinds of things for HIM he would do them for me??? Yea... that didn't work either.

It's not like he NEVER does those things... but it honestly is NOT easy for him.

I told him that I don't need Valentine's Flowers or Birthday Flowers also... so that meant to him, "NEVER BUY ME FLOWERS" it's hilarious.

THough, we he does surprise me... it means a ton. I guess there is a fine line of OVER DOING it huh?

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

That last statement was for you DGB... lol ... sorry!

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Shelle...Yeah, I guess there's such a thing as over doing it. Though if romance doesn't come naturally to your guy, sounds like you need a little more communication. He might need to know why flowers on V-Day aren't good, but on a random Tuesday are.

Just Jules said...

I used to work in greenhouses and floral shoppes when I first started my working career. I grew tired of flowers and knew how much they were marked up. When I met my boyfriend now hubby I told him not to buy me flowers for this reason. I have been out of the flower business now for about oh 15 years and am thinking I could use them in my life again - but like you shelle, once in the brain it is hard to change the male mind....

clan of the cave hair said...

I love and hate this post at the same time. The hate part is entirely me being selfish though. So instead of dwelling on what I think is currently missing in our marriage, I will state that one of my favorite romantic gestures ever was the night we were traveling and I had a no good, horrible, very bad day and the headache to match. We pulled inexplicably into a service station, I was told to sit tight. Hubby entered, was gone about 5 minutes, and came back to the car with a diet coke, a snickers bar, and the cheesiest postcard of a half-naked beefcake with Fabio hair you have ever seen. He said something about "maybe some caffeine and some porn will make you feel better." You know what, I'm not sure that either of those actually did the trick, but the laughter that came because of it TOTALLY did the trick. That card is still floating around the house somewhere and every once in a while one of us finds it and puts it under the other's pillow. We always get a good laugh out of that. Maybe I better go hunt it down. lol

clan of the cave hair said...

oh, and Shelle, I'm the same, I always think "treat somebody the way you want to be treated" doesn't work. And I think the reason why is because the way I want to be shown love and appreciation apparently does not mirror the way he wants to be shown love and appreciation. But every time I try to tell him what I need from him, he tells me I'm being a selfish woman who cannot be pleased. I think the things I want are simple, but for somereason to him they sound monumental. I don't know how to communicate to him that when I send a love note, I'm really REALLY hoping to get one back.

The Wixom Zoo said...

Can you please start a self help group for all of those husbands out there who are completely clueless in the romance department? PUH-LEASE??? The hub is pretty fabulous, but sucks at random acts of therapy would be nice, I think.

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Clan...First off, love your handle. Second, sorry this post gives you mixed emotions. But better to elicit something than you reading it and going 'meh', right? Third, that postcard sounds awesome. Not cause it has a half naked Fabio, but because of the effect it had on you.

Wixom...I thought that's why us guys do this blogging thing.

clan of the cave hair said...

DGB, I'm ok with the mixed emotions. What's the point of reading something that doesn't raise any kind of emotions? Here's the thing about this blog.
This blog has the potential to either enhance relationships or destroy them. And the result is the responsibility of the reader.
As a reader, I can take the information I read here and use it against my partner, or I can take the information I use here and use it to better understand my partner. The fact is, my husband was raised by a man who was a horrible father and husband, so how on earth could he have learned to be romantic from a man who told his wife "just leave then" anytime she had the nerve to complain about his verbal abuse?
So I can leave this blog saying to myself "my damn husband doesn't buy me flowers, he's a crap husband" or I can leave the blog saying to myself "If a man is taught how to be a husband by his father, then I am darned lucky that my husband ignored his father's lessons."

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

I want everybody to please take the responsibility to NOT let this blog destroy your relationship because Clan of the Cave Hair has a point.

You can take this information and use it for bad or good, but I was more hoping for this blog to be a help in discussing things that others are afraid to discuss or that they make taboo during girl time, guy time or on their own blogs.

So please remember we are not professionals on the blog we are everyday people letting you in on our lives, take the info to learn or enhance your definition of your relationship...because just like romance for some guys, relationships are hard work...but worth the effort in the end! :)

Steph said...

Shelle- Good point!!

DGB- DH always calls to say goodnight even if he's at dinner and knows it's our bedtime, etc.

We also text a good bit and I normally get a text here or there every day. It's the little things. :)

Anonymous said...

If this blog causes someone to lose their relationship they didn't have much of one to begin with. I do see her point.

I surely don't write to make anyones partner look bad I hope that isn't what someone comes away from here with.

If your relationship is strained enough that anything anyone writes about their own relationship destroys it you should seek professional help yesterday.

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Clan and Shelle...I agree, this blog is a great discussion point. But it's like parenting. It's easy to compare your child against others, but every child is different. Every relationship is different. It's good to take things we learn about each other here and try to apply them to our own lives, but because one buys flowers and one doesn't shouldn't make or break a relationship.

I could very easily write a post about how I leave dirty dishes in the sink and some of you would probably think, well thankfully at least my partner puts them away!

Sage...Excellent point.

Anonymous said...

I could very easily write a post about how I leave dirty dishes in the sink and some of you would probably think, well thankfully at least my partner puts them away!

Excellent point yourself!

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