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The Lipstick Page Forums Beauty & Fashion Blog
An unexpected gift...


Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, August 21, 2006 5:32 PM (Eastern)

"The key to a woman's heart is an unexpected gift at an unexpected time."

--Finding Forrester, 2000, as quoted in imdb.com


I've been pondering the concept of gift-giving recently, the significance of certain kinds of gifts; why some mean more at different times in one's life, why some come to mean less.

It's no small question. There is an entire forum dedicated to gift ideas (okay, I'm too embarrassed to link to it; take my word for it). I went there a couple of times and felt dizzy. Should it be formidable to the point of justifying its own forum?

The key to discovering the key...the unexpected gift...is the intimacy of your knowledge of the recipient. It is easy to spend money. It is harder to tap into someone else's desires.

At this point in my life, I loathe any practical gift (unless it's cash of course). My life has embodied the practical; it has become interwoven with, indistinguishable from, the everyday tasks necessary to keep a family going.

Only when you're young and single, without responsibility, yet without anything else, does the practical gift become "something you can use." I recall quite clearly how I could have used, say, shoes, when I was younger.

Now I would just be annoyed. Yes, I can use shoes. It's not that. It's that the better gift for me now would consist entirely of escapism. It need not be expensive escapism, nor should it consume an entire day of shopping. It need only be something...unreal.

Men can't comprehend this (and hence invariably end up asking you what you want rather than delving into the topic), I think because it's easier for men to attain what they want anyway. They don't have to wait ten years the way that mothers do to simply pursue the career they want. Men can understand the value of a gift but I think the significance of it eludes them.

Lately I've been homing in on a few perfumes. Again, it's difficult...back in the day, it would have been a matter of me jumping on the BART or Muni, etc. Now I have to plan weeks in advance. I think...perfume makes the perfect gift...it's less a matter of smelling pretty (at least to me now) than it is of breathing in something from the outside that isn't the scent of Safeway or Costco.


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Colleen Shirazi continues to blog here: Life of Colleen
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