Today, my boyfriend and I were looking for a birthday gift for his little cousin, who turned seven.
“Got it,” my boyfriend told me, handing me a flashlight.
There was nothing fancy about it, either. No brightly colored cartoons festooning the handle. It wasn’t even very handy–I mean, it was just a flashlight. It didn’t go all transformer on you and turn into a shovel, too.
“You can’t just give a seven year old boy a flashlight. It’s boring,” I told him.
“Sure you can; it helps you find things in the dark; that’s exciting.”
“No–it’s practical. Painfully so.”
“You don’t know,” he explained,” You’re not a boy.”
“I have a lot of nephews,” I reminded him, “We HAVE to get him something else.”
So we continued wandering the aisles of the store.
“Candy?” I suggested. “Like, a whole bucket full of candy?”
“I don’t want to encourage that kind of behavior.”
Coming up with another idea, I asked, “How about sidewalk chalk? There are tons of sidewalks here in the city!”
“Do you want the kid to get kidnapped?”
Then I gave up. Well, a little, anyway. After my boyfriend settled on an angry birds folder and a quite awesome book full of pictures of dogs swimming underwater–in addition to the aforementioned flashlight–I managed to slip a five dollar bill into the kid’s birthday card.
I mean, everyone likes money.
And you don’t have to be a boy or a girl to know that, really.
You just need to be a kid who is highly motivated to buy a toy to compensate for the flashlight he unwrapped on his birthday.
When we talked about it later, my boyfriend still maintained that a flashlight is a great gift. “But he didn’t seem to really care about it when he opened it,” he admitted.
I didn’t say a word.
(I just wrote a blog post)