This pains me to even write. You ever felt like you’re living your very own Groundhogs Day? Well, there is was. Another “eve” that I spent wandering the great aisles of Wal-Mart. This time it was Mother’s Day Eve. A few months ago it was Easter Eve. And yet, I always find myself here. And every time I promise myself that for Gina’s birthday, or for Christmas, or for Mother’s Day I will NOT BE FOUND IN WAL-MART at 10:30 pm the night before.
So much for that. After wandering the aisles and browsing the 200,000 products in the store, all I see in my cart is some roses, orange juice, bacon, eggs, and a cheese grater. A WHAT? Yes, I said it….a cheese grater. Now, in my defense, I wanted to buy it so I could make Gina’s bacon egg and cheese biscuit sandwiches in the morning, but it was also a backup in the event that I couldn’t find anything. If I could find NOTHING, I could at least say that I had bought her something. But a cheese grater? I looked down the aisles and tried to remember any conversation, any clue of what she wanted. Maybe a foot massager water thingy? How bout some vitamins that let eat all you want and not get fat. Nope. Nope. I even considered a scratch-your-back-in-the-shower cleaner thingy.Well, after wandering the aisles for 45 minutes, and realizing that I was everlastingly too late and I had procrastinated too long, I accepted my fate and decided to face the judgement to come. How can there be 200,000 products in a store and not be something I wanted to buy? In desperation I bought some cookies and some of Gina’s favorite candy bars at the check out, but realized that in reality they would probably get eaten by me before her. As I was handed my receipt and saw that I had spend $46.88 on a bunch of crap and a cheese grater, I felt even more depressed.
I’ve never drank alcohol before, but commonly there is a movie scene where the guy/girl goes to a party, gets plastered, and then hugs the toilet the whole night and vomits everywhere. You know the story. They wake up the next day with a hangover and promise they will never drink again. Well, I felt the same way. I woke up today with a firm determination that I would be a new man. Gone are the days of cheese graters, toasters, blenders, and video games for gifts (and yes I did buy my wife a video game for Christmas–and no she has never played it in the year and a half she’s had it). I am ashamed to say that I have bought all those for her. And worse, I know I shouldn’t, but I CAN’T STOP!
I hurts me to even say that I bought her a cheese grater. But it sounds even worse when she says it. Her dad called her today to say Happy Mother’s Day and inevitably the quesiton came up “What did Ben get you?” She told of my wonderful breakfast I made, with the lovely aroma of bacon in the kitchen and the yummy orange juice, and then she said it……”and a cheese grater”. NNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! It sounded horrible, I was so ashamed, I wanted to deny it…but I couldn’t.
After the humiliation of Gina’s father knowing that I purchased her first daughter-to-get-married a flippin’ cheese grater I sat Gina down on the couch and we had a talk. Here’s how it went.
Ben: Gina, I am a new man.
Ben: I have changed. Gone are the days of the last minute runs to Wal-Mart. And no more appliances for gifts. BUT, you must change too. I demand a list from you before every major gift giving day. I don’t want to be shopping in Wal-Mart at midnight anymore.
G: OK. But I gave you a list for my birthday and you were still at Wal-mart until midnight.
Ben :Was I?
Ben: Well, why didn’t you tell me anything you wanted for Mother’s Day?
Gina: I did.
Gina: Remember I wanted the swiffel sweeper thing and I told you to go the Mervyns on a Wednesday so you could get it when it was 50% off.
Gina: And I told you that I wanted a gift card to Urban Trends.
Ben: Are you sure I heard you?
Ben: What did I say?
Gina: You told me “No you can’t have that”.
Ben: I said that?
Ben: Oh. (at this point I reverted to the same position I started this post with, the hands on the head, weeping like a baby–only I think I was now on the floor in the fetal position.)
I am telling the world this story because I need your help. Please remind me when important events are approaching. Feel free to shoot me an idea occasionally. Check with Gina to see how she is enjoying her future gifts. I already have an idea of what to get her or her birthday….and she’s gonna love it!!!!