Friday, May 12, 2006

An early Mother's Day gift

Rick has never been known for his "celebratory acumen," shall we say. The first gift he ever gave me was a pooper-scooper.

I know, I know. But he was 37 years old and had never had a girlfriend in his life, so I realized this wasn't a deliberate insult, it was just done from a lack of understanding. Sort of like when a little kid buys his mommy a football for Christmas. He's thinking in terms of what he likes (practical gifts that someone actually does need), not what I like. So I began his training immediately.

A week later, he bought me a beautiful freshwater pearl necklace and earring set. And all was forgiven.

Unfortunately, he's not always been so good about keeping up his Women's Studies coursework. When we married, he was already past the best trainability years, of course, and had entered into the curmudgeonly bachelor stage. I was eventually able to wrest his polyester away from him, but only after some significant subterfuge.


This morning, while I was in the bathroom getting ready for work, Rick was combing Alice's hair and putting it into the requisite ponytail. "What are our plans for Mother's Day?" he asked me.

I peered around the corner and looked at him quizzically. "I don't know," I said. "It's not my job to plan that sort of thing. That's for you and the kids to do."

He had a blank look on his face for a moment, as if I'd spoken in Japanese. Then the light began to dawn. "Ooohhhhh, you mean... oh, okay." Then the wheels began to turn. He went into the living room to consult with the committee, then met me in the kitchen where I was filling my ginormous mug with crushed ice. "How about we take you to the Olive Garden for lunch?" he said proudly.

"Is that where you guys would like to take me? I'd be honored," I said.

He thought for another moment, then said, "But Olive Garden doesn't take reservations, do they? What if we do Macaroni Grill instead?"

"How delightful," I said. "It will be fun to see what you guys come up with to treat me."


He began to machinate again. "Oh, I'm going to log onto the Wells Fargo site and check our account. Maybe we have enough money to buy you that new pedal you said you wanted."

My heart leaped, but I remained calm. "Wow, that's a great idea," I said.

When I got home from school this afternoon, the box was sitting on my computer chair.


I am so proud of him, though. This is a BIG step.

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