By contributing writer Sarah Romeo

Who was St. Valentine? And what the hell did he do anyway? All I know is he must have been getting a lot of ass. Ya know, for a guy whose feast day is all about love and romance and getting railed hard until the sun goes down, you’d think he would have written a guide book on how to do it right.

Well he didn’t, but I’ve taken on the liberty of that job this year by telling you what gifts not to give. V-Day presents seem to fall within three categories: inappropriate sexual trinkets, back-handedly insulting items, and “woops, I ran out of time/money.” The gifts contained within each category will surely prevent you from being laid this February 14th. Examine each category closely, and you too can avoid choosing the wrong gift for your lover.

Inappropriate Sexual Trinkets

Have you seen the new KY Jelly commercials that suggest their lube will excite and delight your lady friend this Valentine’s Day? You have? Good. Now erase that idea from your filthy, perverted mind. Truth be told guys, nothing screams unwanted anal sex like personal lubricant. Even if you’re not into that kind of thing, it might also suggest, “I’m gonna want to hit that, even if you’re not in the mood.” I promise you, any hint of vaginal dryness is unsexy. Unless you plan on jacking yourself off with it this V-Day, save the Astroglide for another occasion.

As for the women, I understand that one day a year, you would like to see your man in something other than Family Guy boxers or those white briefs donning the ass-side skid-mark. Still, I warn you: novelty underwear is never a good gift idea. If you get your man hot pink bikini briefs with a giant monkey on the crotch as a joke between the two of you on Valentine’s Day, I assure you that is not the last you will see of it. Men get drunk, they channel their inner Chris Farley, and even weeks after V-Day they are found wasted, bopping their junk in some dude’s face at a party in the leopard thong you gave him. No one needs to see that.

Other miscellaneous items like butt plugs, anal beads, or other strange sex toys sound enticing I know, but I warn you against them. Meant to spice up one’s frisky endeavors, most people are weirded out by the notion of, “Hey, here’s a six-foot chain of plum-sized beads, let’s see what happens!” Buying your lover a prostitute for V-Day is another no-no. Incidentally, it probably would not be what they were expecting/hoping for, and the only permanent benefit from this gift would be the handcuff marks on the bedposts, and a good old-fashioned case of the clap. If you do choose to give your loved one a sexual gift such as a vibrator, it better be a good one. I’m telling you, that shit better be made out of platinum and encrusted with diamonds and squirting chocolate syrup, Victoria Beckham style.

Backhanded Insults

Many people try and get their loved ones something useful or beneficial on holidays. Unbeknownst to the giver, some gifts may be more insulting than loving. Take for example, the gift of low-fat candy. Mark my words, men: If you give this to your girlfriend, she will think she is fat. Period. I actually ran a very scientific study that proved anything you give her reading “Fat Free” will trigger a nerve in her brain, sending a signal to her fingers, which she will consequently shove down her throat and vomit up everything she has ever eaten. Into your toilet. If you’re going to give her candy, give her the most fattening and calorie-loaded shit you can find, tell her you’re worried and that she needs to put on a few pounds. Give her those weight-gaining bars that Regina George ate in Mean Girls. Your girlfriend probably won’t eat them, but it’s the thought that counts. And you’ll probably get laid.

Also, household appliances are not good. To women, irons and any sort of cooking paraphernalia yells, “Make me a sandwich, bitch!” Vacuum cleaners, toasters, blenders, or any other electronic devices that actually involve doing shit will send the wrong message—and that message is, “I hate you, you dirty, lazy slut.” Sorry to say it guys, but Man Law does not apply on Valentine’s Day.

As for the men, we women often don’t realize that males have insecurities too. Deodorant or cologne at first thought, is the perfect gift idea. Little do women know, but men often take this as, “you smell,” and consequently scrub themselves with steel wool in the shower from then on. Also, we know that you guys like to tidy up your beards, so a nice razor on V-Day seems like a good gift. Guys seem to take this notion and convert it into, “I have a hairy back, chest, and/or ass.” Unless you want your man to pull a move like Steve Carell in The 40-Year-Old Virgin and show up to your house with a haphazard chunk of missing chest pubes, I would avoid the hair removal products altogether.

“Woops, I Ran Out of Time/Money!”

We all have our dry spells where we just can’t seem to find the right gift, so we half-ass it. Well suck it up, you pussies, this is Valentine’s Day here, either you’re in or you’re out, there’s no room for slackers. The gift that says, “I bought this 10 minutes ago at Duane Reade” like no other is a stuffed bear holding a heart. Aside from the lack of time, effort, or money this gift requires, your lover may feel slighted at the notion that you probably picked up a pack of cigarettes or a porno mag in the same trip to the drug store. Also, those things are mass-produced; they look like the product of a crack-whore mama bear. These plush critters will get you some cuddling or a blow-job at best, but they definitely won’t get you laid.

And then, ah yes, there is the “Original Poem.” There are two possible scenarios for this gift. One: you’re broke, and your poem goes something like, “I didn’t buy you a present ‘cuz I didn’t have any money, so here’s a poem from your honey.” The only essence this will evoke is bullshit, (and be careful because it’s going to reek). The other scenario is that your poem really does mean something and you spent weeks writing and rehearsing it; chances are it’s still going to suck. You don’t have my powers of rhetoric, so don’t even try!

And the final, worst half-assed gift you can give your lover is a collection of naked pictures of yourself. Newsflash everyone: We are regular people! We do not look like Heidi Klum or Adrien Grenier. We are lazy, flawed, carb-eating, beer-guzzling, ass-wiping, real people, and goddammit, we like it that way! (We just don’t need to show it off to our partners via nude photo-spread.) The horribleness of this gift is even further perpetuated in calendar form—the gift that keeps on giving for a whole year of your fat ass. If you must resort to this, it is the only time I would recommend porn instead; at least they’re professionals.

St. Valentine never told us what to do on V-Day, but now you know what not to do. May the spirit of St. Valentine not fuck you, so that you may actually get fucked.