It’s almost that time again, boys! No, I’m not talking about Superbowl LVII, set Sunday, Feb. 12, in Glendale, Arizona; the 65th annual Daytona 500, coming Sunday, Feb. 19, live from Daytona Speedway; the gravity-defying Winter X Games, scheduled Jan. 27-29 in Aspen, Colorado; nor even the John Beargrease Marathon, which as everyone knows is the grueling 400-mile race for the finish line held the final week of January along northern shores on Lake Superior that serves as a major qualifying event for the incomparable Iditarod, the most famous of the sled dogging events starting the first Saturday in March and running almost 1,000 miles from Anchorage to Nome, Alaska.
No, we’re not talking about any of those. Sadly, we’re not even in the same neighborhood of TV channels.
No, gentlemen, we’re talking about Valentine’s Day— which by the way, fellas, that falls on February the 14th, a Tuesday this year—and that’s press day for me, which means I’m already in the doghouse.
But it’s here once again, when it comes time to pay up or deal with a woman’s scorn until 365 days go by and you’re finally granted opportunity to redeem yourself. Even then, just be prepared if it doesn’t all go quite as expected.
Because I don’t care if you deliver her a carload of roses aboard a brand-new version of whatever her favorite make and model are and toss her the keys afterward, you know what she’ll probably tell her girlfriends later?
“Yeah, well, last year he didn’t get me sh–!”
Trust me when I say you don’t wanna be that dude.
So, we give you fair warning, well in advance, leaving plenty of time to make your arrangements now. And because we so often turn to things like flowers this time of year—during one of the coldest months in North America, when literally nothing will grow, so where they get all the damn things from, heaven only knows—but here’s a little something you should know about flowers (because Lord knows the womenfolk sure do):
And not like, “Here’s a bunch of flowers. Thinking of you, Chuck,” but every last stem in any arrangement speaks volumes in its own language. It literally MEANS something.
Well, to a woman it does, anyway.
So, your flowers need to send the right message. Choose them wisely, my friend, because believe me, you choose incorrectly, and might just want to make like you forgot the whole damn thing anyway and deal with those consequence rather than face the fury headed your way next.
To help you traverse this minefield of hidden meanings and booby-traps deployed by the dastardly flora-lingua populi, we spent decades in deep undercover research, working to crack the code and pass on what we learned to future generations of fellow man cubs.
Then we had to scrap the whole damn thing because we found out, late in our research, that everything we’d gleaned up to then had been intentionally leaked by women everywhere, united in this elaborate triple-double-back sidewinder misinformation campaign designed with sole purpose of landing us men in even more hot water than we usually mange all by our lonesome.
So, we had to start over, and that was like…um, Tuesday.
Then, out of nowhere, the following popped up in our Inbox earlier this afternoon.
It was sent to us by The Farmer’s Almanac—you know, the guys who put out that yearlong fishing calendar and crop planner, the 365-day weather forecast, and the charts that tell you the best times of the month to get a haircut or take a bath—and they’re never wrong, right?
In closing, all we can say is best of luck, and don’t say we didn’t warn you. With no more ado, your flowers and what they mean (we took the liberty of placing the most disconcerting flowers and their meanings in bold typestyle):
- BABY’S BREATH: Innocence.
- CACTUS: Endurance.
- CALENDULA: Jealousy.
- CALLA LILY: Great beauty.
- CARNATION: Fascination, distinction, divine love.
- CARNATION, PINK: A woman’s love, I’ll never forget you, mother’s love.
- CARNATION, RED: Admiration, my heart aches for you, fascination.
- CARNATION, STRIPED: Refusal, No, I can’t be with you.
- CARNATION, WHITE: Innocence, faithfulness, sweet and lovely, pure love, good luck.
- CARNATION, YELLOW: You have disappointed me.
- DAFFODIL: Warm welcome.
- DAFFODIL, SINGLE: Misfortune.
- DAFFODIL, SEVERAL: Joy, happiness.
- DAISY: Innocence, loyal love.
- FORGET-ME-NOT: True love, hope, remembrance, memories.
- GARDENIA: You’re lovely, secret love, good luck.
- HONEYSUCKLE: Bonds of love.
- HYDRANGEA: Thank you for understanding.
- IRIS: Wisdom, your friendship means so much to me.
- 2o. IVY: Fidelity, wedded love, friendship, affection, marriage.
- LAVENDER: Devotion.
- ORCHID: Rare beauty, love.
- PRIMROSE: I can’t live without you.
- ROSE: Love, passion, perfection.
- ROSE, BURGUNDY: Beauty within.
- ROSE, CORAL: Desire.
- ROSE, DARK CRIMSON: Mourning.
- ROSE, LAVENDER: Love at first sight, enchantment.
- ROSE, ORANGE: Fascination, display feeling of enthusiasm.
- ROSE, PEACH: Desire, gratitude.
- ROSE, PINK: Happiness, gratitude, admiration, friendship, sympathy.
- ROSE, DARK PINK: Thankfulness.
- ROSE, LIGHT PINK: Grace, gladness, joy, perfect happiness, please believe me, gratitude, admiration, gentility.
- ROSE, RED: Love, passion, respect, courage.
- ROSE, DEEP RED: Beauty.
- ROSE, SINGLE, FULL BLOOM: I love you; I still love you, new love.
- ROSE, BUD, SMALL: Pure and lovely, beauty and youth, a heart innocent of love.
- ROSE, THORNLESS: Love at first sight.
- ROSE, WHITE: Innocence, purity, secrecy, friendship.
- ROSE, YELLOW: Joy, friendship, true love, decrease of love, jealousy.
- VIOLET: Modesty, faithfulness, innocence, understated beauty.
So, whenever I write something even the least bit off color, I usually run it past the bride and shoot it up the flagpole to see who stands and salutes, and how many fingers they may using in that salute. It’s probably kept out of lawsuits more than once, I’m certain. Her response today was too good not to run it. Given a few choice words that sound right where they are, we couldn’t do it in the publications. So, we go outlaw once again—OutlawAuthorz.com, that is—and hear dear wifey’s assessment of it all:
“Of course, all y’all men are gonna think that’s funny. Except maybe that fellow with half an ass cheek from last year. He won’t find it funny at all. But the rest of you, oh yeah! Ha. ha. ha. Just yuck it up while you can, mister. We’ll see who’s laughin’ later, though.”— Mrs. Outlaw, Jan. 12, 2023
“Oh HELL yeah, and I gotta quote you on that, too!”—Mr. Outlaw, seconds hence…