Abraham Maslow's theory that we are motivated by five primary needs (survival, safety, belonging, esteem and self-actualization, where "the appearance of one need usually rests on the prior satisfaction of another, more pre-potent need") is something we played with last week in relation to breakfast. Today, we turn to your Valentine's Day needs. Note that if you're unhappily single, you may want to start and end with Level 1. Turn the page.
Level 1. The Need to Survive, or: Chocolates
"If all the needs are unsatisfied, and the organism is then dominated by the physiological needs, all other needs may become simply non-existent or be pushed into the background." -- Abraham Maslow
Ricky Ricardo kept an emergency box of chocolates on hand just in case he forgot certain important events like Valentine's Day (and Lucy's birthday and Christmas and Mother's Day), and perhaps you should, too. Compartes and Valerie Confections: These are both great resources. Even if you would like to think your partner has attained self-actualization (see: Level 5) and thus doesn't care much about the holiday, today probably is a bad day to test your theory. And if you're single and not too thrilled about it, well, the chocolates will help you survive the day as well.
Level 2. The Need for Safety, or: A Cookbook
"Just as a sated man no longer feels hungry, a safe man no longer feels endangered." -- Abraham Maslow
Now that you have survived the first part of your day, you now can turn to the next pressing concern: Dinner. And while you can scramble to find a table for two at a decent restaurant at this 11th hour, your safest and most reliable bet probably is to refer to a good cookbook or favorite recipe. After all, you don't need a reservation at Vons.