The terms “deep affection” or “love” implies a connection between two people of a more intimate nature than one holds for a relative or a friend.

Enter the Enforced Days of Affection, also known as Mandatory Gift and Card days.

If people care about their mothers, fathers, grandparents and lovers, do they need an outsider to designate days when those special people in our lives must be honored and remembered?

Granted, some people may need a reminder nudge. Mighty thoughtful of the card ompanies, the jewelry-store-on-every-corner folks, and the florist industry, to step up and shame folks into buying the obligatory gifts for their loved ones. Quite noble of them, don’t you agree?

Have any of the businesses hoping to cash in on holidays such as Valentine’s Day considered the true desires of the recipients? Given the current climate of glorifying the slender and toned body, some women may not want chocolates or strawberries drenched in chocolate, and sprinkled with gag-worthy, calorie-packed doodads.

Contrary to the popular propaganda by florists, jewelers, and professional know-it-alls, sometimes practical gifts are more appreciated and lasting than gifts with an expiration date. Mind you, a necklace is nice, but if your washer, dryer or dishwasher is on the fritz, the money spent on the lovely necklace could go for something practical. Practical is taboo where gifts are concerned, but it is a sign of someone attentive to another’s needs.

Please do not misunderstand. Many of the touted and strong-arm-suggested gifts are nice, and many appreciate them. However, you may be with an unconventional woman who does not toe the party line of must observed the mandated gifting time. Instead of beating your head against a wall trying to think of something to buy her, do the unthinkable and ask. She may surprise you with her response.

We show love in unlimited ways, and not all of them fall under the so-called norm or cost money. If you pay attention to your loved one, all will be made clear to you grasshopper.

Does she complain about wasting her free time on the weekends with cleaning and other tedious chores? Would the world end if you surprised her and handled the tasks she dislikes the most?

Sometimes I ask Hubby do something specific and always say please. When I thank him, he gives me a cheeky grin and replies “I was ordered to do it.” Laughter is never in short supply at our house. Most of the time it is not necessary to ask for his help, he sees a need and takes care of it without fanfare. Rest assured I always show my appreciation for everything he does, stealthy or otherwise.

Females are conditioned to have great and sometimes unreasonable expectations, but what about the men? Have you ever wondered why the focus is predominantly on the female partner? Love flows in both directions or should. Why are the guys shortchanged? The disparity is something to consider.

One curious gift is a fuzzy onesy for a grown woman. They claim both parties will enjoy the pajamas. How would that work?  It is hard enough to put one of those on a baby or remove it quickly. Performing the divesting process on an adult female could be entertaining.

Perhaps the company imagines a scenario that involves a wrestling match which ends with neither party wearing the pajamas. However, if both parties can enjoy the pajamas, it would be worth the price of admission to see Hubby wear one. But then, he is not into fuzzy, one piece footed pajamas.

Inquiring minds must ask. Do the footed pajamas have a drop-seat? It would be practical, but that contradicts the part about both parties enjoying the product. Adjustments in design are needed. However, should you lean toward the kinky side, then possibilities do exist.

Gifts given without the coercive shotgun element of commercialism prodding the giver are the ideal.