Greeting Cards

17 06 2013

greeting-cardsWhat is it with women and greeting cards? Birthday, get well, Father’s Day, Happy Funeral- it really doesn’t matter what the occasion is, women simply take longer to select a card than men. It takes my wife, conservatively speaking, about 10 times longer to pick out a card than it does me. The reason for that is that she reads 10 times more cards than I do in order to select that perfect card. When I need to get a card, I get in the store, grab the first aesthetically pleasing card I see, read it and head for checkout. I usually get the right card on the first shot. Sometimes, I might need to read a second and, on rare occasion a third, but I’m usually out of there in about five minutes.

My wife, on the other hand, as most women, will stand in front of that card rack and read card, after card, after card as if she’s reading the menu at The Cheesecake Factory trying to decide on dinner.

It takes time to stand there and read 30 cards and that’s a luxury I don’t have. I have too much to do and not enough time to do it. I have Donovan’s Reef starring John Wayne and Lee Marvin on DVD. I don’t have time to waste in a Hallmark store. Besides, since she won’t see them, she won’t know if the card I got her is better or worse than the 29 I didn’t read. As far as she’s concerned, the one I bought and gave her IS the perfect card.

Unless you get your wife a card with a message such as, “Maybe you should consider skipping the birthday cake this year,” or “Another year gone by and you still have the body of a 30 year-old…Dodge Ram” or “No, that dress doesn’t make your butt look fat, it’s those enormous glutes that make your butt look fat.” That’s called suicide by Hallmark. If you do something that stupid, then you deserve to die.

And that’s another thing, that Hallmark store really is a chick store. Look at what’s there. Aside from thousands of cards for endless perusing, there are all those Christmas ornaments, keepsakes and cutesie figurines with pithy sayings like “The opinions expressed by the husband of this house do not always represent the views of the management.” The closest thing they have to a tool is a tiny hammer hanging on a fake Christmas tree on the same branch as Santa driving a miniature ’57 Chevy. Hallmark is the knick-knackiest store there is and just not guy-friendly. It’s like a flea market in the mall.

Guys go to Hallmark out of duty. Women go to read cards and buy baby books. But, if you really want to understand the difference between men and women, go to Hallmark, Wal-Mart, Wallgreens or any place that sells greeting cards. If you go on February 13 or the day before Father’s Day, you won’t see many women, at least no more than on any other given day. That’s because women make a special trip to the card store days, sometimes weeks, in advance to get the card for the upcoming occasion. Men, on the other hand, will put it off until the last minute and then all show up at the same time. You can’t get near the card rack on February 13 or the day before Mother’s Day because of all the procrastinating guys. Guys don’t usually make a special trip to Hallmark. We’ll try to tie it in with something else we have to do. I’ll run into Hallmark when I go get my propane tank refilled. Or, when a guy realizes he’s out of shotgun shells he just figures he’ll pick up a card for his wife when he goes to Wal-Mart to get more ammo.

I’ll say this, of all the cards I’ve given my wife over the 45 years I’ve known her, I have never heard her complain or show the slightest displeasure for any card I’ve given her, and that includes the year I gave her the birthday card with the young African-American couple on the front with a message that read, “Happy Birthday from Both of Us.” The only time she has ever shown even a hint of discontent was when I forgot our seventh anniversary and didn’t get her anything. But, she knows I’m not going to spend a great deal of time standing in a store reading cards. She knows, too, that regardless of the card, the picture or the message, every card I give her comes from the heart with sincere intent. I know that’s a little sappy but I’m still in the dog house over our seventh anniversary and that was 35 years ago!hallmark-store




2 responses

17 06 2013


17 06 2013
Bill Taylor

Thanks! I’ve accomplished my mission if you thought it was funny.

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