McKeithan Column|Husband lowers bar for Mother’s Day

Published 8:41 pm Friday, May 15, 2009


Wedding license to be revoked
I am excited to awake each day, refreshed in the knowledge that I can’t possibly make a bigger fool of myself than I had the day before. I retire to bed each night, hopelessly defeated, knowing that I have done so.
This is the daily cycle of my life, a universal certainty as predictable as tidal changes, solar eclipses, and naptime.
Another certainty is that Mother’s Day will arrive the second Sunday of each May, and I will give my beautiful wife a lousy present. This past Sunday, my worthlessness was on full display as I shattered her expectations once more. (And, trust me — it’s already a LOW bar.)
I didn’t even give her a gift.
Given my history, it’s understandable. I bought her a beautiful bracelet for Valentine’s Day; she was allergic to the metal-like substance from which it was made (which apparently was radioactive).
Not that I didn’t attempt to find her something. I was in Raleigh for a meeting last week and went to the big mall there, hoping to find something extra-special-for-the-person-I-love-most; but I couldn’t find anything I wanted. So, I decided to shop for my beautiful wife. I spent three hours in that soulless place (two in the food court).
I decided to get her something expensive and classy. I went to the big-mall-map-thingy and tried to find the “Expensive and Classy” listing on the directory. No such thing, so I scrolled down alphabetically until I found the place that is synonymous with class: Spencer’s Gifts.
After intense searching, I found several items in the store assured of putting me in the good husband column.
The Fart-O-Nator* was a can’t-miss gift. Controlled by remote, the machine made sounds that would crack-up the folks at my beautiful wife’s church job, or her Chamber of Commerce gig. Sadly, at $12.99, it exceeded my budget.
I was in a quandary, so I called my beautiful wife to feel her out on a gift idea. “Honey, the dealership tells me that the new Cadillac Extravaganza I bought you for Mother’s Day has been discontinued due to the recession. Golly-darn-it.”
“But, I think I’ve found something even better — Fake Dog Poo Poo. Do you have enough?”
Apparently, cell phone reception in the mall is sketchy because the phone went dead.
I visited other stores in the mall. Glamour Shots had a “couples’ special,” but I figured I wouldn’t look good in a feather boa.
Eventually, I ended up at “Everything Here is Just a Quarter” and found a touching card with a mismatched, undersized envelope. I made up for it by underlining special sentimental words inside with TWO LINES (“the;” “a;” and “Kwanzaa”) so she would know that she is loved EXTRA MUCH.
(And she is — thanks for being such a good sport, Honey.)
The obligatory “McKeithan Column” disclaimer: Mr. McKeithan does his shopping locally whenever possible, to support our merchants and the economy. *The Fart-O-Nator is a real device — the WDN apologizes to anyone offended by reference to this gadget. The holiday card reference is used to highlight McKeithan’s inability to even pick a Mother’s Day card properly. No disrespect is intended to the holiday mentioned, or to those who observe it.
____________________________OK to laugh
I have often been told recently that tough times are when humor is needed most. With that in mind, I offer this silly column. No, I don’t think I’m funny — but being laughed AT is a risk I’m willing to take. Laughter, in any form, is OK with me.
You have no doubt read about struggles here at the WDN, and in the newspaper business overall. I have been preoccupied in recent months trying to help us through difficult times, which is my primary responsibility here. Believe it or not, “Smart Aleck” is not my official title.
I would only ask for your patience, understanding and continued support as we strive to remain a viable, important part in the life of this community. By subscribing, advertising and visiting our Web site, you are helping us to fulfill our mission. For that, I offer heartfelt thanks.
Ray McKeithan is Associate Publisher/GM of the Washington Daily News and a devoted husband to his beautiful wife. Your negative comments about him and his writing can be sent directly to his e-mail address: