Did you know that Father’s Day is THIS WEEKEND? I know! First the May long weekend is “early”, now Father’s Day is on the 15th, and I feel like I’m in some weird time warp. Which means, of course, that my father-in-law’s card will be late – as usual – and that I’m scrambling to figure out what to get my own dad. I don’t know how things work in your house, but in mine, I’ve somehow become the default person for buying cards for my in-laws. If I don’t, then no cards will be bought, written in by the children, and sent. On the one hand I feel a bit resentful about this turn of events, but on the other, the thought of my father-in-law walking to get the mail and getting no card from the kids is just too sad.
Yesterday I went out to purchase a gift for my husband. We don’t usually go crazy with gifts on Mother’s Day or Father’s Day. Typically, the kids make cards and I go shopping at the garden centre as my Mother’s Day gift, which somehow turns out to be MUCH more expensive than, say, a bouquet of flowers. Two minivan-loads of plants later, my Mother’s Day gift is fulfilled. But Father’s Day tends to be a bit trickier; the kids want to give a gift, but my husband has, literally, everything. How many subscriptions to Golf Digest and boxes of Pro-V1s does one man need?
But we had a big barbeque on the weekend, with my husband making ribs for the guys and a butternut squash and vegetables for me, and he announced that he would really, really like a big platter with which to carry ribs/ giant steaks/ other meat in to the house, rather than having to make several trips with our normal plates. A big platter! That shouldn’t be hard, I thought. I’ll go out and look, I thought. How difficult could this be, I thought, ridiculously in retrospect.
Sometimes we need a sign from the universe to show that the paths that we take are the right ones. In my case, I normally shop online, with only a few exceptions. I love online shopping; I can clearly see what items are in stock and what are not, generally you can get a coupon or sale code, and my purchases magically show up right at my door. Unfortunately, with Father’s Day coming up in a mere five days, I didn’t really have time to wait for shipping and I didn’t want to pay extra for expedited shipping. So I slicked on some lip gloss, slipped on my fancy non-dog-walking shoes, grabbed my purse and headed for The Bay.
What is it about The Bay? I will keep to myself my opinions on the Jessica Simpson line of clothing that included denim overall shorts, but I will not keep quiet about the disaster that is shopping at The Bay. Why is it so disorganized? Why is it so cluttered? Why is there never any stock, or staff to help? Why do they make it so difficult? I circled around the Housewares department several times, perking up at the barbeque accessories only to be disappointed again and again. I looked through each and every aisle, wondering why the electric razors and suitcases were right beside the kitchen linens, and why there was every kind of kitchen gadget imaginable but no platters. Why were there barbeque accessories but no outdoor dining accessories, save for bright green plastic plates and plastic cups with a floral motif? Was a simple platter so hard to find?
I gave up and went to Bed Bath and Beyond, the name of which store I can never say without silently repeating, a la Frank the Tank, “I don’t know. I don’t know if we’ll have enough TIME.” But Bed Bath and Beyond was worse. That store is like a sensory explosion; walking into it I find I can barely remember what I went in there for – was it this Jelly Belly Slushee maker? Or maybe this “Roll-a-Lotion Body Lotion Applicator”? How about a spiral vegetable cutter? That whole store is like an experiment in how quickly we as a species can make a landfill overflow.
Suffice it to say I did not find a platter, although I was directed to a section with cheap-looking floral plates and clear plastic platters, which already looked stained and scratched. I looked at my watch, realized that the afternoon was half over, went home, and found something online that will be delivered in 7-14 business days.
Better late than never, and sign from the universe taken to heart: next time, skip the store.