The ineptitude of Good-Bad Dad, non-kid-centric gift-giving will be on display this weekend for many fathers.
As each of us journey out to the mall over the next two days we’ll be trying our best to fail miserably at buying a gift that conveys how much our wives mean to our families.
Most of us would rather be just about anywhere else – but we love our wives and owe them the world.
If you’re around a mall, take note of the herds of guys – these dad’s shopping for Mother’s Day will certainly NOT be saying:
10. “I know my wife’s size – the brand, the store or the weird European sizes won’t confuse me.” Second only to the Sunday crossword puzzle, understanding female sizing charts is a job fit for IBM Watson.
9. “I’m not going to the mall – I picked something up months ago.” Pre-planning for holidays is a part of the brain that men lack.
8. “Having the kids help me pick out the gift was really helpful and relaxing.” Enduring the mall trip with kids is not worth the stress of keeping them on-task, toughing-out the assured visit to the germ-infested play-land or having to withstand the virus they’ll come down with the following week.
7. “I don’t know – this top might be too revealing for her.” When it comes to GBD’s buying clothes for our wives, less is more.
6. “I have the outfit she wants, now I need grab a necklace and other accessories to match.” For Dad’s, a meal is complete if there is a main dish, just as an outfit is complete with pants and a shirt.
5. “The best part of buying present is wrapping it.” The work of gift-giving does not end after leaving the mall – there is packaging work to get done. Do I go with a bag or box? I just can’t handle another decision!
4. “No gift receipt is required. There’s no way she’ll take this back!” If my track record is indicative, I’d strongly suggest to secure a receipt to prepare for the 80% chance of the item being exchanged.
The quicker the item is exchanged, the better I feel about it. That means that I, at least, bought at a store where my wife had her eye on something else.
3. “This color is a few bucks more but she really wants it – I’ll take it.” If #4 is likely, there is little risk in going with the less-expensive version – if not, you’re just cheap. (guilty)
2. “There’s no rush, I could shop all day!” This is not fun, it’s a mission requiring meticulous planning, agility and speed.
1. “These Hallmark cards are priced very reasonably.” By the weekend, the cheap cards are picked over. Last-minute dads like me are left with the fancy, sappy, three-pager that costs $7.
Whether you have a general idea of what you’re getting or flying by the seat of your pants, take the time to give your fellow GBD a nod as you pass them in the mall this weekend.
They will, no doubt, be sharing the same worry, the same impatience and the same desire to find that perfect item for the person they love.
This proves once again, that a dad’s love for the mother of their children exceeds their hatred for shopping.
That is, as long as they get home in time for a cold one.