August 17, 2012 - submitted by Tim, Canada

Q. TEAM ORACLE QUESTION #84
My girlfriend is in love with Coldplay and their music and her first CD ever was their X&Y album. I want to do something extra special for her with that album being the focal point. The only problem is that I am not the most creative guy and don't have the greatest of ideas. So I was wondering if you would have any suggestions to help me out. Thank you.


The Oracle replies:

I suppose the most obvious suggestion is to use the X&Y code - based on the Baudot Code - it's colourful and cryptic. There's a code generator you could use to compose a short message for her and then maybe transfer that to be incorporated into either a card, a picture or work of art. It could be something personal to you both or you could choose lyrics from her favourite song from the album if you don't know what message to write. However, if you want to say something very private, the code isn't easily read by others.
Other than that, I'd say don't worry too much about how creative you are but choose a song or a lyric and express it in a drawing, painting, photograph - or any other way - and present it her. I am sure she'd appreciate anything that you have put time, effort and thought into - which you clearly are doing.
Over to you.

You could take the What If lyrics and add to "What if you should decide/
That you don't want me there by your side/That you don't want me there in your life" your own thoughts and write it down decoratively.
A ring or a pendant for wristband or necklace, engraving on the font side: X&Y, backside: her name & your name.Good Luck! L.Q.


1. Tim can draw a bath for her with all the works (bath salts, scented candles, bubbles) and make sure to have her favourite Coldplay songs on a playlist or CD ready to play whilst she's soaking in the tub.
2. My next suggestion would take a little more effort but he could create a video with pictures of him and his girlfriend, or clips he's videotaped with Coldplay playing in the background. There are programs like premiere or after effects that you can use with great tutorials that can be found on Google.
I hope I helped! All the best, Ory.

Try printing out one or two lines from different songs in different scripts and then making a poem or collage out of them to tell her how you feel. Google has many wonderful examples but try combining other things you like to do together into the collage to make it really personal. Add photos of yourselves and the band behind maybe in black and white to really make the words pop. If Coldplay is coming to somewhere near you sometime soonish then maybe you could put some tickets in there and let her find them.
Hope it helps! Frayiah.


My reply to that is make a painting or something like that.
Maybe if you have an instrument paint one up like Chris Martin does then give the guitar to her as a gift. That way she has something that is there for good and nothing that could easily get destroyed or damaged like if water or something got on it. Anyways good luck and cute story. Apple Jack.

Think about creating a special framed piece that will not only commemorate your girlfriend's love of X&Y but also your own relationship. Pick an appropriate song from the album - maybe A Message, Fix You, or Swallowed in the Sea and have the lyrics written out in calligraphy on nice paper (you can have someone do this or find a nice calligraphy font and just type/print it out). Put it in the center and then surround it with photos of the band from the X&Y era (you can find plenty of these online) and perhaps a copy of the CD art and frame the whole thing. Or create a collage of the photos/CD art and intersperse with lines of lyrics from the songs done in calligraphy. Somewhere among the band photos tuck in a picture of yourself and your girlfriend together. The framed piece could be as large or small as you like. This would make a lovely, one of a kind gift that I know she will love. Jill, United States.

I'm a HUGE Coldplay fan & my favourite album is X&Y. So as you said your girlfriend discovered Coldplay with this album, I suggest you to take a look at the code. You can write her name with the X&Y design, which is called Baudot Code.
You could make her a Coldplay Tee with her name written on it and add some lyrics of her favourite Coldplay X&Y's songs.
I'm sure your girlfriend heard about the Coldplay butterfly shape confetti?! So you could create some homemade ones for her, and write on it whatever you want - lyrics, or something more sentimental which would come from your heart.
You can also try to find her an elephant cuddly toy, which would refer to Coldplay's Paradise Song/Video.
Hope these few ideas can I help you out. I'm sure she will be happy and always remember: "It's the thought that counts" Good luck, Delphine from France.

Its actually a pretty creative idea to do it inspired by X&Y. Ok you can always do a collage with the names of the songs or inspired by the artwork in the album booklet. Try looking around on the website deviantart.com for inspiration and other collages. Or you can figure out what her name translates too as the squares on the album. (It's called the Baudot code) (Example: the cover means X&Y). Hope I helped, Meghan, USA.

Perhaps you could make her a card that is reminiscent of the X&Y album artwork- a dark-blue, square-shaped card with her name or a romantic sentiment in the Baudot alphabet on the front? You could use the lyrics of the album to write her a note inside.
Or on a larger scale, a surprise party or occasion could be made more X&Yish if you set out clues for her written in the Baudot alphabet.
Hope this helps, best of luck:D

I suggest you to chose a sentence for each song of the album, it can be important for you or reminds something about your girlfriend or a particular moment. You could also associate each song with some photos of you two. With all these things you could create a poster or a diary or put everything in dvd (all with X&Y’s graphic style)! Good creation! Stefania.

If she loves Coldplay, take her to see a Coldplay show! However, that all depends on tour dates and when you want your special occasion. If you want something more simple and intimate, try making a powerpoint or keynote presentation with pictures of the two of you with her favorite X&Y song in the background. You could also handmake a card for her and decorate it like any of the album covers. On the inside, write a thoughtful note that plays on the lyrics of her favorite songs. Whichever route you decide to take, make sure it comes from the heart, and you can't go wrong! Best of luck, Blake.

Thanks for your suggestions. Remember, Team Oracle is open to anyone so if you fancy replying, click to read this week's question, and send us your answer.