A fresh idea for your valentine: a ready-to-cook lobster in a bag

February 12, 2007|By Kevin Cowherd | Kevin Cowherd,Sun Columnist

The commercial came on while I was driving up the JFX and trying not to get killed by the usual psychotic lane-weavers in BMWs.

Have you ever noticed how seven out of 10 times when someone blows past you at 100 mph and then cuts across three lanes to get to the exit ramp, it turns out to be a prune-faced guy in aviator sunglasses driving a Beamer?

They should really do a study on that.

Oh, I don't think the BMW people would like the results.

But it would confirm a long-standing suspicion held by many of us about Beamer owners and the raging sense of entitlement they bring to the highway.

Anyway, I was in the homestretch on the JFX, daring to think I might actually make it to the county line without being rear-ended, when the radio played a spot for a local seafood market.

"This Valentine's Day, give her a fresh lobster," a voice intoned.

A fresh lobster?

At that moment, I tried imagining myself coming home on Valentine's Day and presenting my wife with a wriggling lobster packed in dry ice, or whatever they pack them in.

No card, no candy, no flowers - just a big, fat lobster staring up at you with those beady eyes and feebly trying to move his little antennae, if he's not too out of it.

To tell you the truth, I don't know if she'd go for it.

To me, when you go with a lobster as a Valentine's Day gift, you're really pushing the envelope.

Oh, I know, I know. Seafood companies have been offering fresh lobster as Valentine's Day gifts for some time now.

You can have them shipped from Maine, Massachusetts, wherever they catch them.

But is this what women want on Valentine's Day?

Is this going to work for the guy?

Will it keep the peace and ensure domestic tranquillity?

When I went on the seafood market's Web site, there was more info about its lobster deal, and it didn't sound bad.

For $29.99, you could get one medium-sized lobster, plus a pound of jumbo shrimp, corn and potatoes.

The whole thing came "ready to cook" in a mesh steamer bag that you would throw in a pot and steam for 15 minutes.

So I started asking women in the office how they'd feel if their husband or boyfriend went the lobster route on Valentine's Day.

It turns out that even if a woman likes lobster, there are other issues to consider.

For instance, there's the issue of who exactly would cook the lobster.

A guy couldn't simply show up with a couple of mesh steamer bags and hand them to his wife or girlfriend and say: "Hon, pop those babies in a pot, would you? And lemme know when they're ready - I'll be watching the Maryland game."

This would probably not go over well.

"If he cooks it, I guess a lobster would be OK," one woman said.

"Oh, he has to cook it," another said.

"It would be better if he took me out for lobster," said another.

When I brought up the subject of whether lobster makes a good Valentine's Day gift with guys, opinion was mixed.

"A lobster is sexy," one guy said. "Sexy, sexy." A lobster is sexy?

"Very sexy," he continued. "You bring home a lobster dinner for your wife, good things are going to happen, if you see where I'm going here."

I had no idea.

But this guy was from Maine. He sounded like he knew what he was talking about.

Another guy said a lobster dinner works as a Valentine's Day gift only if both parties are gung-ho lobster lovers and have been lobster-deprived for some time.

"So now they get to savor this wonderful lobster dinner," he said. "They linger over it and linger over it, enjoying a fine wine, OK?

"Then they tear their clothes off and attack each other like love-crazed ferrets."

Wow. What are they putting in these lobsters, anyway?

But a third guy dismissed the idea of lobster as a gift.

He said the only way he'd give his girlfriend a lobster on Valentine's Day is if the lobster were made out of chocolate and came in a cute little box topped with a red bow.

"Then you have a gift that's a total winner," he said.

I tried to point out that a lobster made out of chocolate isn't technically a lobster.

But he said he didn't want to get into all that - he was trying to make a point.

Which I appreciated, even if it made no sense.

kevin.cowherd@baltsun.com

To hear podcasts featuring Kevin Cowherd, go to baltimoresun.com/cowherd.

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