Dear Ann Cannon • My husband is a practical, thrifty man, which is totally great — except when Valentine’s Day rolls around. I would love, love, LOVE it if he would send me flowers, but he thinks flowers are an expensive waste of money. The one time he did give me flowers, he couldn’t resist telling me what a good deal he’d gotten on them. I know this sounds shallow, but I felt like he was saying I’m not worth a full-price bouquet of roses. How can I let him know that a gift of flowers would mean a lot to me?

Flower Child

Dear Flower Child • I’ve had versions of this question before — both from women who don’t want flowers and from others, like you, who do. Flowers are your love language. And the fact that they don’t last can make them seem all the more precious, right?

So, what can you do? I’m assuming you’ve told your husband that you wouldn’t say no to a big old vase full of something floral for Valentine’s Day. If you haven’t, then you should. Like most of us, he’s probably not a mind reader. If you have told him, then tell him again. Let him know that while you ordinarily appreciate how practical he is, it would mean A LOT to you if he’d send some flowers your way. Be sure to say thank you when he does. And, guys, don’t go bragging about how much or how little you spent on your significant other. Keep information about how much a gift cost to yourself, is what I’m saying.

Dear Ann Cannon • What do you say to that 20-something single guy who’s always complaining about how he doesn’t have a girlfriend?

Tired of Hearing That Guy in My Office Whine

Dear Tired • It depends on whether or not that guy in your office actually wants your advice. If he’s complaining just to let off some steam, nod sympathetically and say, “I’m sorry.” If he wants advice, tell him to put himself out there — and keep putting himself out there until he finds himself a girlfriend. This advice from last week’s column might be helpful.

Meanwhile, I received this delightful message about Valentine’s Day from a reader.

Nearly 20 years ago, I began what became my own little tradition of sending or dropping off “secret” valentines to my best girlfriends, as a way of expanding the fun. Girls only! In doing so it became MY FAVORITE HOLIDAY, because it was my turn to give without any expectations (on the part of recipients or of receiving anything in return)!

I have so damn much fun! My son helps me by running up to put gifts in mailboxes or on porches, ring doorbells, and race back to the car so we can speed off before being spotted on the morning of the 14th! Other gifts must be mailed. But they all have that traditional unsigned “Please be my Valentine!” message. Of course, everyone’s figured out it’s me, but that hasn’t lessened the fun, and planning the gifts for next year (I choose a theme to keep it simple but personal) keeps me intrigued all year! I’d gladly give up other holidays before this beloved one of mine!

Ann Cannon is The Tribune’s advice columnist. Got a question for Ann? Email her at or visit the Ask Ann Cannon page on Facebook.