It seems that every lingerie manufacturer on earth has been promoting their goods in anticipation of Valentine’s Day. Even such high-end brands as La Perla have gone out of their way to start planting ideas in our heads since the middle of January, if not before.

Heck – we were barely past Christmas when the onslaught began.

Is it only me, or is lingerie for Valentine’s Day the ultimate tacky gift? Not that I’m completely adverse to a present that benefits both the giver and the receiver. I’ve been taken out to dinner for a birthday – I certainly didn’t expect to eat alone. I’ve even bought myself a lovely piece of lingerie that I hoped my beloved would appreciate too.

Maybe it’s just the whole Valentine’s Day thing.

Don’t get me wrong: La Perla (in particular) makes lovely bras and panties. I quite like what they have to sell and have been impressed with the subtlety and classiness of their pieces. But that doesn’t mean I think I’m ready to buy for February 14th.

The specific advertising campaign that has so annoyed me is trying to plant the idea that the woman is the one who should be buying lingerie – as a gift for her beloved. It rests squarely on the idea that the best gift we have to give is ourselves – nicely wrapped.

No offense – but we’re still talking about lingerie for Valentines’ Day, no matter how you slice it. The only “unique” aspect is that the push is for the woman to buy it, rather than the man.

I like to buy lingerie. I even like to buy something that I think will entice my beloved – even though it will be off me faster than fashion experts can change their minds. What I can’t quite wrap my head around is buying lingerie just because our culture’s marketing machine says so.

Besides – it’s not a surprise on Valentine’s Day.