My husband has been working 15-17 hour days every day for I can’t tell you how many weeks. He hasn’t had a day in about three weeks and won’t until Christmas day. That means that I am in charge of Christmas, solely, and that only sucks for everyone involved because I am still not 100% sure how the whole thing is done. I can cook the dinner and I can wrap the presents and I can help the kids make the reindeer food, but ask me to buy stocking stuffers, I dare you.
What? The? Fuck? Goes? In? A? Stocking?
Rhetorical question, people. I’ve had it explained to me a bazillion times but I’ve also had quantum physics and pornography explained to me about as many times, and I don’t get those either.
That’s not entirely true. I totally get Quantum Physics.
Shopping for the kids is easy, of course. I just track the changes in barometric pressure and humidity that occur in the room when different commercials air or catalogs are sifted through, measure that against the density of drool stains in the furniture/on the laundry/soaked into the carpet and voila! I know what they want! They want Heeley’s! So I buy them the damn Heeley’s that cost me $99.95 a pair when I first bought some 5 or 6 years ago after I had to wait in line for 15 hours outside the super-posh shoe shop like I was looking for a Cabbage Patch Doll in 1982 or something and today cost exactly $22.95 at the local gas station and that is just proof that there is a god and he is indeed punishing me for breeding a decade before it was appropriate for me to.
Shopping for my husband is less easy, because all he ever wants is some new fangled, cross weighted, Calla-titl-ike golf club and I can no sooner understand the Navi’s language than I can that which is spoken in the neighborhood Pro Shop. So I end up getting him flannel pajamas with cartoon moose all over them, with the promise that maybe, someday, I’ll take them off of him to aid in his re-masculination. He seems happy with this arrangement.
Shopping for myself is simply soul crushing, but in it’s defense, I have desperately needed a decent roasting pan since the 1900’s and now I don’t.
Shopping for my mother in law is making me cry.
I did all my shopping in two days and was feeling very smug and proud of myself for having p0wned Christmas with ruthless efficiency and an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope, and then I wrapped everything and realized that I got my mother in law and myself two gifts. Which is FINE. Who needs more than two gifts? No one, except i got everyone ELSE in this house, like, 10. And I just don’t think I’m a big enough person to handle the “mom, why does Santa hate your mother in law” question with any level of dignity.
So I set out to get her more presents. Except, she’s a fairly progressive sort of woman. She like brilliantly executed tacky Jesus stuff, African decor and clothes from Chico’s. I live in the Land of Beer and Walmart, Texas...and she lives in a 400 square foot apartment. It’s not like I can get her anything much bigger than a zippo or she’ll have to store it in her fridge. And I can't get her anything she'll like because the closest thing to a boutique store I have near me is Claire's and I think my mother in law is allergic to glitter and nickel and unicorns.
So I'm walking through Walgreens this morning with a basket full of Depends undergarments, Metamucil and personal lubricant because when in doubt, always go funny, right? But then I started to think, what if she doesn't think it's funny? What if she thinks I am the Worst Human Alive? What if we are stuck here together for an entire week with her hating my face? Or, what if she doesn't think it's funny at all, but instead quite useful a gift and then the joke is on me because there was personal lubricant in that box and oh my god what have I done and that's when I bought her some angel magnets in the likeness of her grandchildren and called it a day.