Apparently not America. But I do. Especially when kids die from cancer. And there is a Leukemia Drug shortage for our kids out there, who are fighting cancer. Please hold while I go kiss the Urn of my baby boy. Pretty sure some red roses and some diamonds won’t bring him back.
I’ll say it again. Valentine’s Day is for suckers, MOTHER FUCKERS!!!!!!!!! Way to take away from what is really important in this world. Like loving harder than ever before, every single day. How about using the money, spent on Valentine’s Day and finding a cure for childhood cancer instead? How about saving some kids? Sounds like a no brainer to me.
By Andra Bryan Stefanoninews@joplinglobe.com
Who says you can’t buy love?
For Valentine’s Day, Americans will spend an average of $126.03 per person on romance, up 8.5 percent from the 2011 average, according to the National Retail Federation. That’s the largest increase in 10 years. Valentine’s Day is second only to Christmas for consumer spending.
Area businesses, including florists and restaurants, are forecasting big spending this year. Sales are up at the Candy House, with locations in Joplin, Springfield and Redings Mill, and co-owner Pat Hicklin said she is “really hopeful that the recession is lifting.”
“Businesses like ours tend to be a real good gauge of the economy,” she said Monday.
On Monday, the Candy House shipped 600 dozen hand-dipped chocolate strawberries overnight to fill Internet orders. To keep up with demand, Hicklin said, employees began dipping strawberries at 3 a.m. Monday, and they will dip 400 dozen today for walk-in orders on Valentine’s Day.
“It’s wonderful,” said Hicklin, who with her husband, Terry, purchased the longtime candy shop and factory in 1999. “We don’t know what to attribute it to, whether the recession is getting better, or some people have told me they are tired of holding back. They are finally going to buy what they want to buy, hoping for better days.”
Valentine’s Day spending this year is expected to reach $17.6 billion, according to the National Retail Federation. Of that, $4.1 billion will be shelled out for jewelry, $3.5 billion on an evening out, $1.8 billion on flowers and $1.5 billion on candy. Romantic couples also are spending when it comes to Valentine’s Day dinner dates — an average of $146.52, according to restaurant ratings guide Zagat, compared with about $70 for a typical meal for two.
Jeremy Shuey, manager of the Red Onion Cafe in Joplin, said that holds true at his restaurant, which has been booked for reservations on Valentine’s Day for a month. It is one of the restaurant’s biggest nights of the year.
“It continues to be a night couples like to spend time together; it seems like they really want to treat themselves,” Shuey said Monday. “They tend to order fancier menu items, spend more per couple, order a bottle of wine, order high-end steaks.”
Cindy and Elie Riachi splurged on a special Valentine’s Day treat for their children, Daniel and Andrew, a few days early. They spent about $50 on Saturday — a splurge, Cindy Riachi said, as the family doesn’t eat out much.
“I like having the kids do special events with us, as that is why I had them, to spend time with them,” she said.
The National Retail Federation also found that consumers will spend an average of $25.25 on their children, parents or other family members. That’s right in line with what Riachi spent at Target on two Disney movies to give as Valentine’s Day gifts to her boys.
At Dillons Floral in Pittsburg, Kan., florist Carol Hornback reported that six drivers were on the roster Monday, and eight to 10 drivers were scheduled for today.
“Normally we have one or two,” she said during a short break between fielding requests from a line of customers. Florists at Dillons arrived at work an hour earlier than usual on Monday to keep up with demand, and they will arrive two hours early today.
The phones at some other floral shops went unanswered throughout the day Monday — an indication of how busy they were preparing for Valentine’s Day.
A dozen red roses usually cost about $60, according to the Society of American Florists, but on Valentine’s Day most people will pay about $80, the trade group said.
“Here, men are spending anywhere from $25 to $100, or sometimes more, and the majority of orders are roses,” Hornback said.
According to the National Retail Federation survey, men outspend women on the holiday by almost double, shelling out an average of about $169 versus about $86 for women. But they tend to do so at the last minute, making it hard for jeweler Chad Comeau, who owns stores in Pittsburg and Joplin, to gauge sales so far this year.
“We’ve had several buyers in today,” he said Monday. “But in this business, men are the buyers, and they tend to wait until the last minute. Guys are extremely last-minute shoppers.”