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Ceramic squirrles, crockpots and rubbish

Posted: January 5, 2014 - 1:06am

Yes, I’m still pondering the Christmas mystery of why my husband didn’t give me the stainless steel kitchen trashcan with the removable plastic receptacle and the lid that opens and closes when users depress the foot pedal. My mother says I shouldn’t ruminate on such things, but my mother has a perfectly good trashcan in her kitchen.

I described the bin in detail to my husband and provided explicit directions for finding it, right down to the store aisle and shelf. Yet he mocked my request and cast accusations of mischief at me. Our oldest son cautioned him, “I’d look out about giving Mama a garbage can for Christmas. She might think you’re calling her trashy.”

Then I got the note. It said, THANK YOU FOR MAKING XMAS SPECIAL FOR US. WE LOVE YOU. THIS IS NOT A XMAS GIFT, BUT LET’S GO GET YOU A NICE KITCHEN REFUSE CONTAINER AFTER THE HOLIDAYS. The note was from my beloved, who must have noted my disappointment when all the gifts were opened and wrapping paper covered the floor and I had nothing in which to put it.

I understand his hesi­tance in giving me something as mundane as a trashcan. I blame other women for causing well-meaning men like mine to second-guess themselves. With stories of tragic domestic Christmas disputes circulating on the Internet, how could he confidently wrap a rubbish receptacle and put it under the tree?

The report on the woman who received a Crockpot and cheap lingerie from her spouse startled even the most conscientious present picker. To show her gratitude for her husband’s thoughtfulness, the lady hurled the Crockpot at him, giving him a swollen, black eye. While her spouse lay incapacitated beneath the tree, she went outside and set fire to his truck. Though this account was fabricated satire, it caused my husband to pause and consider the consequences of his own gift choices.

When the ceramic squirrel news – all true – broke, he waffled on his decision to leave the stainless steel object of my affection on the store shelf. In fact, he somewhat regretted giving me a set of kitchen knives instead. After reading about how a North Charleston woman beat and stabbed her man with a ceramic squirrel because he failed to bring home beer for Christmas, my own spouse thought about the potential penalty of not giving me my Christmas wish. The next thing I knew I had a note in my hands.

He’s a clever fellow. I can see that he’s playing both sides of the coin here, seeing to it that I get what I want without himself being accused of giving it to me as a gift. Except now he’s got himself in another corner. Our wedding anniversary arrives mid-January and he doesn’t want the offer of the non-gift trashcan to be construed as an anniversary gift. “If we get too much closer to January 16th, we’ll have to put off getting the trashcan until February,” he warned me.

“That’s okay,” I consoled him. “Then it will be a Valentine’s Day present. I think that would be lovely.”

He doesn’t share the same sentiment. He’s pushing his point, trying to make me happy by not giving me a gift. This morning he pressed, “So when are we going to eat sushi and shop for that trashcan?”

“Are you suggesting that we go on a date for dinner and a stainless steel trashcan with a removable plastic receptacle?” I responded.

He smiled, pleased with himself. “Yes. I’d like to take you on date.”

I believe he’s thinking (and hoping) I’m trashy.

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