Talking Shop

Shop to her heart's content.

Face facts, gentlemen: Most women don't want Victoria's Secret for Valentine's Day. Skimpy lingerie is what they, ideally, give to you. And everyone knows that too much chocolate makes a girl fat and pimply. So what do the ladies want? Women, you'll learn, love the kinds of trinkets they won't usually buy for themselves, the sweet nothings they finger in cute little boutiques, thinking how wonderful such an item would be for a gift. For someone else.

Let herbe that someone else. A good place to look is Epoch, 1433 Ogden Street, pink-lipsticked pixie Charli Warren's tiny-yet-opulent kingdom. Epoch just naturally screams Cupid's nest; every cranny overflows with little pretties like a pair of pink formal gloves, rhinestone hair clips, lilac incense, tiny rose-fabric pillows and a floppy patchwork flower brooch. If you care to splurge, Epoch is festooned with fabulous fan-shaped, rose-adorned, bead-handled bags made of multicolored organza layers. They're pricey, but they'd make a splash with any woman's feminine side. Call 303-831-6480.

Just as the name Epoch inspires thoughts of Victorian richness, Sparrow, at 1608 East 17th Avenue, denotes a sparse and natural world represented less by satin and lace and more by butterfly wings and orchid blossoms. Sparrow offers simpler fare: clear glycerin soaps with embedded butterflies, wall vases fashioned from old glass bottles, filigreed costume brooches, a porcelain bluebird, a delicate tortoise-shell comb and hair pick. All the while, owner Kirsten Coplans's adorable white boxer puppy, Pearl (not for sale), watches over the place while wearing a signature choker of oversized faux pearls. Talk about a sweetheart! Call 303-321-1559. -- Susan Froyd

Love Hurts
Feel the beat on Fight Night.
SAT, 2/12

Nothin' says lovin' like a little smackdown for your sweetheart -- and local scene-lebrities intend to prove that tonight at The St. Valentine's Day Massacre: Fight Night and Chocolate Fling. Forget the long-stemmed roses and candlelight, and instead head to Andenken Gallery, 2110 Market Street, for a full roster of no-holds-barred boxing bouts between contenders such as Mr. Pacman, Sid Pink, Magic Cyclops, Cap'n Metal, and Rainbow Sugar's Amy Fantastic and Germainbow.

"We would all like to see Sid Pink get clobbered, right?" quips organizer Andrew Novick, who is also scheduled to wrassle in the ring. "And if you've never seen the Rainbow Sugar girls duke it out, you should."

There's plenty of entertainment for those sweeter of heart, too: Partake of the overflowing chocolate fountain, sip the all-you-can-swallow cocktails and champagne, or dance, as DJs Altron, Jedi Scott and Segue spin the beatdown grooves.

Andenken's doors open at 9 p.m.; the boxers hit the mat at 10. This fight club welcomes fans of all ages, but the bar is open only to those 21 and over. Admission is $20 per person, $35 per couple. For information, call 303-292-3281 or visit www.andenken.com.

It's sure to be a TKO. -- Kity Ironton

Tea TimeSAT, 2/12

Indulge yourself with a variety of teas, chocolates and historic houses at the Chocolate Lovers' Progressive Tea celebration. Starting this afternoon at 1 p.m., the Wyman Historic District will offer tours of three bed-and-breakfasts -- the Castle Marne, the Adagio and the Holiday Chalet -- as well as the Fletcher-Haynes House, stopping at each for tea and treats. "This is a wonderful occasion to bring a friend or that special someone to sit down, have some treats and take part in our silent auction packed with wonderful gifts," says Margot Crowe, president of the Wyman Historic District Association. Tickets are $30 per person, and reservations are required. For more information, call 720-840-8261. -- Richard Kellerhals

Bush Whacked
Get intimate this V-Day.

Spent last Valentine's Day suffering the arrows of Cupid's most formulaic celebration? Not this year. Instead of you and your shmoopie trading the same old Vermont teddy bears, trim each other's fuzz with Jenna's HotTrimmer. The intimate shaver designed by Jenna Jameson costs less than $25 and comes with a pubic comb and crotch stencils -- including the ubiquitous heart, the spicy jalapeño and the mythical lightning bolt. Jenna's battery-powered trimmer (www.hottrimmer.com) might also work on that used merkin you threw into the hamper because it was shaggy.

But if your hands shake and your valentine would rather leave such delicate work to professionals, try the 3rd Avenue Studio, 5575 East Third Avenue, whose experienced aesthetician, Nicole, can shape or tint a grassy knoll for $40 and up -- the price depends upon the intricacy of your preferred pubic style. This spring, topiary is the new fashion, so book your landscaping appointment at 303-355-8480. -- Ben Hiller

 
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