Having a hard time figuring out what dad wants for Christmas?
You’re not alone!
My dad has always been hard to shop for. If anyone in the family even has a hint as to what to get dad for Christmas, we make sure we protect it like the last soft-centered candies packed in a decorated Whitman’s Sampler box.
As he became less active, of course, the choices became fewer. You know what, I was down to the brightly colored and unbelievably delicious macarons, a Blu-ray collection of a bunch of holiday themed movies for the Christmas Story lover in him and a few cute coffee mugs when I came up with the special idea of a canary to keep him good company. I sort of guessed it would bring sheer joy to his already passive life.
However, the little bird drove him crazy. According to my dad, it did two annoying things: chirp and drop sickening stuff from its body on a piece of paper all day. I told him the small bird did not bother him so much like I did when I was small.
Then one fine day the canary decided to stop chirping and that drove him nuts. My dad said he knew it was a change he effected in it. And, it only sang when “Family Matters” came on, and infuriated my mom.
Somehow, I thought the bug and spider zapper was a clear winner. I spotted one at the local pharmacy and figured out that it was a marriage made in heaven. My dad hates bugs, and hates to go on the offensive. He’d rather sit back and wait for the tiny bugs to come to him so he can swat them. It was a small plastic gun with a cork and string attached so that when the trigger is pulled, it zapped the hell out of anything just a couple of feet away.
For the first few weeks, my father shouted in excitement “I love it!” and let loose with his favorite bug slaying gun with regularity. You wouldn’t believe, for a while, I was literally afraid to walk across the living room for I would risk being taken out. I also considered buying him a soft insect slayer to water down his killing instincts. However, in due course, as expected, the novelty of the secret weapon wore off.
Later the same week, I visited a shop, and saw before me a Retro Arcade Pac Man Gaming Kit. In the age of PS3 and Xbox, when you don’t even need a flashy controller to play games, it’s quite easy to forget the joy of handling a controller. I knew dad would like to have his share of throwback games back. Aloud, I said, “My dad would love this.”
When he unboxed it, he looked at it closely and said “That’s nostalgic.” I said, “Hang on a second! It plugs into your TV and is played just like the original version!”
Call me insane, but as I watched him gawk at the retro game graphics flashing, I had the feeling this hobby would never replace the New York Giants.
There you are. The tricky challenge to present dad a gift that will get his attention goes on and on. Since anything I buy dad for Christmas seems to underwhelm him, I have moved on to gifts for me that I want to convince dad he wants too.
I will come up with something unique and interesting.
I always do.
Getting the right gift for dad is a Christmas Challenge. Check out the dad stereotype guide and posts to break free from the dad dilemma.