One of the most difficult tasks in life is buying someone a gift and, whether it be for a birthday, Christmas, anniversary or Valentine’s Day, buying a gift for a woman is the hardest of all. Men have an added disadvantage because we can’t buy her clothing. She either won’t like it or it won’t fit. If it’s too big, we are accused of thinking she is fat. If it’s too small, we are accused of wishing she was thinner and therefore suggesting she is fat by default. It is a no-win situation. Even if we buy her a dress and fluke the perfect fit, the next crisis is that none of her shoes, handbags or coats match that particular colour or style. The dress becomes the catalyst for a shopping spree for a whole new expensive ensemble which, because it was the man’s fault to begin with, he is expected to fund.
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Of course, there is always the old standby of jewellery but there again, there could be a problem. From personal experience, if it is only gold plated and she needs two magnifying glasses to see the ‘genuine diamond’ in the beautiful one micron nine carat gold setting, we are accused of being a cheapskate. On the other hand, if it is too expensive there is no problem with the lady but it takes a year just to pay it off.
I have a very good friend in Pattaya who, like most of the people I write about in stories, must remain anonymous. Let’s call him Alex. Sitting at a bar one afternoon, he showed concern because it was his girlfriend’s birthday the following day and he was yet to buy her anything. He already knew the rules about buying clothing and was not going to head down that road.
“What about gold?” I suggested. “Always a good standby.”
“No, she’s got plenty of gold already.”
I wanted to explain that even if she owned Fort Knox an extra trinket would not go astray. Even so, his opinion was that giving gold was the easy way out and he wanted to give her something requiring a bit more thought. He left the bar early with the express intention of first purchasing a very romantic birthday card and then to search for the perfect gift.
I ran into him again ten days later and asked if he had been successful in his search for a romantic gift. “Yes,” he replied. After he left me that night, he had found a large, beautiful birthday card then wandered around the gift shops and department stores, occasionally stopping for a beer to gather his thoughts and toss around ideas in his head. At some point, he staggered past one of those unisex beauty salons and stumbled upon the idea of the century. He went inside and had his bum waxed. No, you don’t have to read that sentence again – he had his bum waxed. Hearing this I was dumfounded, but according to him, he proudly returned home to expose this gift to his girlfriend. She was speechless. So much so, she never spoke to him for over a week. Alex did not understand her negative reaction. After all, now his backside was, well, as smooth as a baby’s bum.
There are few moments in life when I have actually lost control but this was one of them. My mind immediately flashed back to the movie Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo and the scene where the main character, played by Rob Schneider, underwent rear end hair removal treatment in his quest to earn money as a gigolo. That mental image was enough for me to beg Alex not to go into further details about the procedure. I said it was difficult to comprehend how a woman could fail to be impressed by such a thoughtful, unique gift.
“So …. how did you wrap it?” I asked. His terse two-word response is unprintable.
Alex did concede there was a slight chance he was short of his mental peak at the time of making his decision but, looking at it logically, there was nothing really wrong with the gift per se. Women have been known to subject themselves to several hours of beauty treatments and makeovers in order to please their husband or boyfriend. In goes bride of Dracula, out comes Cindy Crawford. That, apparently, is quite acceptable. Other women purchase sexy, slinky outfits and a few undergo expensive, painful cosmetic surgery to make themselves more attractive to men. Society sees nothing wrong with that. From Alex’s point of view, he was merely making himself more appealing to his beloved. From everyone else’s point of view, he was a raving nut case.
“Don’t you know that having hair shaved or removed only makes it grow back thicker?” I asked, trying to pretend like I actually cared. He dismissed my question as being an old wives’ tale.
“Maybe, but I’ve seen a lot of old wives with moustaches!”
It was then decided we would change the subject and talk about the more mundane aspects of Pattaya living. I moved my bar stool slightly to allow Alex to sit on the one next to me while we imbibed.
“No thanks,” he said, pushing the stool out of the way so he could lean against the bar. “I’d rather stand.”
“What’s the matter, mate?”
“My arse is so prickly it itches every time I try to sit!”
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