The Procrastinator’s Guide to Last-Minute Valentine’s Day Gifts

You had big plans. This was the year you were going to show up with the perfect bouquet, amaze her with a few well-chosen French phrases you learned just for her, or sweep him off his feet with the, er, unconventional night you planned.

But then there was all that work to do, all that rent to pay, that damn Super Bowl party to organize. And now it’s less than a week until Valentine’s Day and you’ve got nada. What to do? A mea culpa? Or is there still time to save this year’s V-Day?

My mother told me that necessity is the mother of invention. (And she ought to know, right?) So, for you disorganized and overworked romantics, I say: Don’t give up. Romance is not in the flower bouquet; it’s in the heart of the person carrying it. Here are five last-minute ways to show you really do care.

Aha Life

Some gifts are dangerous: If you get them wrong, it’s worse than giving nothing. I’m talking underwear, bedroom toys, even jewelry. That’s why this app from Aha Life is so handy. You choose a gift — but it’s just a suggestion. When it shows up on her phone, she can switch it for something she likes more (or a size that fits better). Leaving this to the last minute was your plan all along, right?

A year of music

Rhapsody just launched a gifting service that lets you give an entire year of music. It will be delivered immediately, so she can start programming a playlist in the car on the way to dinner. And I got you a deal (they don’t call me the Deal Seeker for nothing): You can give your sweetie a 12-month subscription — normally $120 — for just $85 by using this link.

Netflix and chill — really

Give him a subscription to Netflix and suggest you spend some time chillin’ at home. He’ll know what you mean. You can even watch movies if you want to. You can buy a Netflix gift card at lots of retail outlets, or send an email version right to his phone by buying it online at Amazon.

Read poetry aloud

Curl up with a good book and a glass of wine and read aloud to each other: With the right book, this is really romantic. Or take it one step further by hiring a professional narrator to read the book for you. Who better than Joseph Fiennes, who played the young Will Shakespeare in the insanely romantic Shakespeare in Love?  Just go to Audible.com and look for the Arkangel dramatization of Romeo and Juliet, with Fiennes in the title role. If you have an Audible subscription, you can use your credits to send her the book. Or you could give her a three- to 12-month subscription, with the promise of making this a regular activity.

Flowers … stat!

If you live in San Francisco or New York City, you can send a sweet bouquet of flowers via bicycle messenger through Bloomthat.com; they’ll be delivered within 90 minutes. Other places in the country require slightly more planning, but you could still have them there tomorrow. And you can get $5 off by using the code before Valentine’s Day.

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