Friday, June 11, 2010
Boys and their Toys
Like many daughters and wives, I am at a loss what to get my husband for Father's Day. The trouble with shopping for men is that they never have a wish list. If they are like my husband,John, when they want someting, they do their research then go out and buy it. John is particularly annoying in this way--his camera breaks a week before his birthday. Aha, I think. New camera. Two days before his birthday he arrives home with new camera he has just bought!
Like many men John loves his gadgets. A real case of boys and their toys. Our house is full of interesting objects that John bought, telling me how useful they'd be: the machine to turn VHS tapes into digital, the machine to turn old vinyl records into mp3, and to turn cassette tapes into digital files. To scan slides onto a computer. All sitting there on the shelf, never used as yet.
In the kitchen there is the bread machine, the vegetable juicer, the sausage stuffer,the electric slicer, the hamburger maker... and most recently, the professional grade coffee roaster. Yes, he now roasts his own coffee. He hasn't got it right yet so we alternate between drinking bitter over-roasted beans and insipid not-roasted-enough beans. Wouldn't Starbucks be easier? I ask.
The trouble with all of these toys is that John is enthusiastic for about three months. We eat freshly baked breads daily. Healthy juices. Even homemade sausages. Then he loses interest and they go to the graveyard for dead appliances on the bottom shelf of a cabinet. So I suppose I should be glad that he hasn't a wish list for more appliances at the moment. We're running out of place.
Women are wonderful. It's so easy to find a gift that pleases them. Bath products, a cute piece of costume jewelry and we're happy. Give a man something that he doesn't specifically think that he needs at this moment and either it will go back to the store or will lie in a drawer untouched. I once found John's Christmas stocking in August--still full of the candy and little gifts I had so thoughtfully put in it.
Clothes are a complete taboo. He doesn't believe that anyone but he can know his taste in clothes (and given the strange garments he comes home with, that's probably quite true). So the kids have discovered that the only thing that works is a gift certificate to a restaurant, or a promisary note to weed-whack the hill, paint a room etc.
So I think it's going to be a card and a nice dinner this year. Oh, and if you hear about a new and fascinating gadget, please don't tell John about it!