Valentine’s Day has been celebrated for centuries by romantics as a day to express love and adoration for their spouses and romantic partners. The history of the day is a mystery at best, as legends reference several saints of both Catholic and Roman tradition named Valentine or Valentinus.
In modern history, Valentine’s Day is highly commercialized, celebrated with chocolate, greeting cards, and diamond rings. For geeks, the day is a special chance to uniquely demonstrate your love and affection, while both avoiding any potential religious overtones to which you may or may not adhere, and the commercial nature of February 14th. If you’re a particularly geeky couple, here are a few Valentine’s Day gifts to celebrate your love and affection — without turning to the typical box of candy hearts.
Surprise Them with a Geeky Cruise
Do you love learning and traveling the world? InSight Cruises offers the opportunity to take a relaxing, enjoyable cruise with your loved one, and also enjoy what InSight calls “a vital, engaging learning community at sea, with opportunities for exploration and adventure in port.” Each cruise offers a theme including “MacMania,” which presents on-board seminars including Getting to Know Your First iPad, iPad Kung Fu for the Extreme Mac Geek, You Don’t Know Lion, Advanced iPhoto and iMovie, Not For Dummies, and The Creative Side of Photography. After the cruise, you can choose from sessions such as the opportunity to tour CERN or the MPIA. If your sweetheart loves to explore their geeky side as much as you, an InSight cruise could be the perfect Valentine’s Day gift. The InSight Cruises website lets you explore future cruises being hosted.
Go to a Convention Together
Being a geek opens doors to dozens of opportunities to socialize with other like-minded geeks. Wither you like electronics, LEGO, or Star Wars, there is a convention for you. If you really want to surprise the love of your life with one of the best geek conventions, consider buying tickets to Comic-Con, scheduled for July 12-15, 2012 in San Diego. Tickets aren’t actually available yet, so you might have to write an IOU, but they’ll know that it’s the thought that counts — just don’t forget to buy tickets as soon as they go on sale, as these types of conventions tend to sell out fast (as well as local accommodations). If you can’t make it to San Diego, check out other local conventions happening in your area. Eventbrite and Meetup.com are great places to also search if Google fails to help.
Buy Star Wars on Blu-ray
A pre-requisite to being a geek is not only being a devout fan of Star Wars, but also owning a Blu-ray player. If your spouse, girlfriend, or boyfriend doesn’t own Star Wars on Blu-ray yet, this Valentine’s Day is a perfect chance to demonstrate your love and embrace your inner geek. Just be sure to pair this gift with dinner at your favorite restaurant (we hear geeks love sushi) to make sure you didn’t take the obvious and easy way out of celebrating this “Hallmark” holiday.
Get Your Genetics Tested
Do you think your relationship is a perfect match? With 23andme, you can get your sweetheart’s genetics tested (along with yours) to see if you’re really a match made in Heaven… er… science. 23andme is a DNA genotyping kit you order and then send back with a saliva sample for testing. 23andme will then analyze your sample, and return a plethora of results, including whether potential children will be at risk for 44 inherited conditions and whether you’re at risk for certain types of diseases. If you’re getting ready to think about “the future” with your boyfriend or girlfriend, this geeky gift could help you decide if you’re really made for each other. To order a 23andme kit for you and as a gift, visit 23andme’s website for more info about its product and services.
Make Your Own Geeky Candy
Nothing says I love you like… I love you, albeit perhaps in Huttese written on a special batch of M&M’s designed just for your sweetheart. For just under $50 you can write your own uniquely geeky message, add clip art, and choose your own message. You’ll get two bags of M&M’s just in time for Valentine’s Day. If you’ve got a bit of a bigger budget, you can have a special batch of NECCO custom Sweethearts Conversation Hearts made for your girlfriend or boyfriend — but you’ll have to buy a full production, which is approximately 3,500 pounds of the six-flavored candies or 1.6 million individual hearts. If you can’t afford this option, visit mymms.com/ to create your own geeky candy.
Pop the Question with a Geeky Engagement Ring
Will she say yes? If you’re ready to pop the question, consider a geeky engagement ring to cement the unique bond you share. One of my favorite examples of a geeky engagement ring is a binary band, which allows you to imprint a special message using binary code. There are some notably tacky geek-inspired engagement rings out there (such as rings that turn into USB drives), but another classy idea is this beautiful Lord of the Rings-inspired ring. However, while these ideas are definitely geeky, a small note for the guys: Almost all ladies love a little sparkle. She may be a geek, but diamonds are never a bad choice.
What geeky Valentine’s Day gifts have you received in the past? Feel free to share your favorites or ideas in the comments below.