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Seriously, What Do You Get the Man Who Has Everything?

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What do you get the man who has every gadget, device, musical instrument, CD, DVD, wine accessory, wine, article of clothing and even neon-colored sneakers?

By Laurie Stone

I’m not being rhetorical here. I need help. What do you get the man who has every gadget, device, musical instrument, CD, DVD, wine accessory, wine, article of clothing and even neon-colored sneakers? This happens every December, the time of year I’m handed one of my biggest life tasks: I must buy a Christmas present for my husband Randy. I can sense the raised eyebrows of more creative and resourceful women. But you must understand. Buying Randy a Christmas gift is really, really hard for six reasons.

Competing With The Master

Randy is a master gift giver. Matching his uncanny ability is like trying to out-cook Jacques Pepin. Randy loves buying presents. He craves the hunt, trying to find that perfect shirt or just the right trinket. He matches personality and hobbies and favorite colors. Each year I get things I didn’t know I wanted, but when I get them, they’re perfect. I love them.

Of course this has also come in handy over the years. I quickly learned Randy’s the one to go to for buying our sons’ Christmas gifts. From tricycles and Pokeman cards when the kids were little, to guitar amps in modern times, this Dad knew what he was doing. And I was happy to let him do it.

He Loves To Shop

Yes, we have a mixed marriage. Randy has the fastest keyboard hands I’ve ever seen. He knows his way around Amazon, Ebay and Etsy in ways that would shock Jeff Bezos. Christmas feeds his gift-giving and buying passions. He has the patience of a duck hunter. He’ll sit and wait for the perfect gift at the right price at the most opportune time and then pounce.

Me? I don’t like shopping. I get frustrated. If I don’t find the perfect item in 10 minutes, I walk away.

The Futile Quest

GetHe already has everything. Like many people in this part of the world (including myself), Randy lacks for nothing materially. I seriously can’t think of another object he could use. So, this has led me to a more creative approach. Recently I’ve switched to giving him experiences over the material. Except, there’s a problem.

What I like to buy him, he’s meh about. I’ve given Randy tickets to Broadway shows and gift certificates to Manhattan restaurants. What could go wrong? I had never understood his polite, but restrained response. Then he explained it. Manhattan means work to him. Manhattan is crowded trains. Manhattan is hurrying in the rain and not finding a cab. Manhattan is loud, sprawled out, and expensive. I finally got that. And it made sense, but it’s one more category to cross off my list.

Mars And Venus

The stuff he does like, I don’t understand. Randy could always use another doohickey for his P.A. system in the basement or one of those electronic gizmos for his bass. But I might as well be assigned to purchasing medical equipment for an operating room. It’s not my bag. And on the few occasions I’ve tried to get him a techie gift, he already had it — in a better version.

It’s Better To …

Randy gets a bigger kick from giving than receiving. He’ll deny this, but I know it’s true. My husband loves to give. He presides over Christmas like a master of ceremonies, doling out each present, watching our faces while we pull back the wrapping. He gets joy from making people happy. I sit back, sipping my coffee, knowing I’ll always be playing for second in the Yuletide sweepstakes. My husband is a pro.

Perseverance

However, that doesn’t mean I give up. I’ve just learned where to channel my holiday energies. If I can’t find the perfect gift for my husband, I do the next best thing: I give him a nice Christmas. We have a cheerful, decorated home. We have good food in the fridge and family around the table. We have a pretty Christmas tree and poinsettias and stockings hung over the fireplace.

I’ve decided if I can’t be good in the gift-giving department, then I’ll be good in the Christmas-making department. And that is the one area I excel over him.

Meanwhile, time is ticking. I’ll keep searching. And who knows? Maybe I’ll hit it right this year. Maybe I’ll find that perfect gift for my husband.

In the meantime, there’s always a different shade of neon-colored sneakers.

Laurie Stone writes from the woods of Easton, Conn. Her blog, “Musings, Rants &Scribbles,” shares thoughts on growing up, older and (hopefully) wiser. Follow her on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest.

 

 

2 Responses to “Seriously, What Do You Get the Man Who Has Everything?”

  1. Diane says:

    Ugh. I feel your pain, Sister! Grant is the master gift-giver. He LOVES to shop and find the perfect whatchamadigger for Joe’s cousin’s Aunt’s Uncle. I’m just not a ‘stuff’ person. Never have been. Hopefully never will be. So I’m the one who’s hard to buy for.
    And what can I find for him that he can’t find better, bigger and probably cheaper? Sigh.

  2. Shari says:

    Wouldn’t ANYONE love a pound of chocolate from LA Burdick, which is my fave chocolate?

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