Husby’s birthday is approaching soon! Of course this makes me very happy. It also is very awkward for a very simple reason. We have a rule not to give each other presents for valentines (note lowercase) and xmas (note lowercase). We do, however, celebrate birthdays. And when I say celebrate I mean to say we tell absolutely nobody and hide at home pretending we are plants. Nevertheless, both of us participate and at some point the topic of a present comes up.
Husby is a terrible person to give presents to. Because his invariable answer to “is there anything you would like to get” is “I already have anything”. Or, worse, “you”. YOU ALREADY HAVE ME. This is called cheating. Not in the cheating cheating way. Just in the you are making my life difficult way. And who likes their lives more difficult? (Theresa May. But she’s special like that.) Can’t he just say “Porsche”? Or “Loads of cheese”? Or “Four dead frogs”? You know, like normal people. Why isn’t he a material girl? Come on, WANT SOMETHING!!! Not too expensive. Two zeroes are sort of okay but be careful with first digit.
When he gives me all those (zero) hints, I have to come up with my own ideas. In the Netherlands giving gift vouchers is considered to be a very nice thing to do. Except we have 100 euro worth of vouchers we got for Xmas 2014 and we still haven’t quite decided what to do with them. (In Poland, where I come from, a gift voucher essentially means “I don’t give a shit about you and I have no idea what you could possibly want or like. Here. I made a gesture. APPRECIATE. You can even see how much I spent, so you know exactly how much value you have for me.” Oh yes, if you want to show someone you don’t care about them at all, those “perfect gift idea” generic “shower gel and matching deodorant” packs are great. Pair them with vinegar for that aunt you can’t stand.) I like to think that I know Husby better than that. (Also, I have standards.) And also because his favourite store does not do vouchers. It’s like they’re conspiring against me. And do you know how often his birthday comes? Every. Bloody. Year. I am sorry but 12 months are not enough time to solve the problem of “something for the girl with everything”.
So I bought him a surprise gift. (Don’t read this, Husby.) The worst thing is that I had to hide it from him. And when you buy someone a Porsche it is really, really hard to fit it under the sofa. (It isn’t under the sofa, Husby. Stop reading.) Also carrying it to the second floor is really not something my back could cope with. So the result is that I put it somewhere inconspicuous (i.e. at the back of my favourite bar) and it got stolen twenty minutes later. So I am back at point zero, and glad I got insurance on it. So I could buy my kidney back from the guy I sold it to on eBay and he hasn’t used it too much, although I don’t understand why anybody would need to have a hat made of a kidney. Regardless, the scar isn’t too big and I like to think it makes me look very manly in Khal Drogo way.
(Just kidding, Husby! Also, I told you to stop reading. Why don’t you ever listen to me?)
I considered buying him a book. No, he’s not one of those people who would answer “thanks, I’ve already got one”, luckily. But he now reads on an iPad. And, even worse, he is one of those terrible, terrible humans who don’t understand technology advances. I’m like “but how can you not want an iPad Pro which you can use with an Apple Pencil and which has colour gamut of, eh, I forgot but it is VERY GOOD INDEED” and his response is “but this one is still very good for reading books and watching Tumblr”. I suppose that’s correct, but it means I can’t get him an iPad. Or a book. He even reads his newspaper on the OLD AND DECREPIT iPad. Not that I would get him a newspaper for his birthday. But I am sure you understand the pain by now.
He makes his own clothes. (So no clothes.) He makes his own art. (We have way too much art already, and I contributed, so it got worse.) We have Spotify, so no CDs. We also have Netflix, so no DVDs or blu-rays. It’s like he is actively working on making my life more difficult when it comes to presents. I suppose I could get him socks – he is running out of socks, our washing machine, like every other washing machine in the world, eats one every time we do the wash – but nothing says “romance” like socks. Except I suppose a vacuum cleaner. (We’ve already got a vacuum cleaner and it’s only a bit broken, so being Dutch we can’t justify buying a new one.)
He doesn’t play board games. So if I got him one, I would essentially be buying a present for myself, not completely unlike when Fred Flintstone got his wife a bowling ball, then immediately asked if he can borrow it. He doesn’t play instruments (praised be Gods, it’s enough that I do). He loves surprise parties as much as I do, by which I mean he would kill me with fire if I organised him one. Also, it still wouldn’t get me off the hook when it came to giving him a gift AND it would make my life much more complicated.
I’ve still got, eh, nine days. Currently the list is, eh, short. By which I mean I still don’t know what to do. I suppose I will get him a candle. Because who doesn’t like candles? A heart-shaped candle smelling of roses. It will mean both of us will have to leave the room when it’s burning, because none of us can handle that fake rose stink, but hey, it’s the gesture that counts. Isn’t it?
Almost happy birthday, Husby! (Also I told you not to read this!!!)