Dave just got back from a shame trip to the Gap. I say shame, because I guilted him into going on this trip.
How, you may ask, did she do that? (Take notes, married ladies.)
Rewind to April, when it was Dave’s 41st birthday. He’d just, under another cloud of guilt, cleaned out his closet and, in a burst of self sacrifice, decided to get rid of at least 4 pairs of shabby (ragged on the cuffs, stained along the legs) khakis. “I need new khakis,” he’d announced. So I got him a 100.00 gift card to the Gap, instead of buying him the kind of khakis (flat front) that I think he should wear.
Fast-forward to last night. The Gap card, filled with 100.00, is still smoldering in Dave’s wallet. After a delicious dinner at Angelina's, we’re at Ed and Kristy’s house for apple and pumpkin pie, Limoncello, and various art and golf talks.
“Ed,” Dave says, hands on his hips, “Do you know what store is in the same mini mall as Penzeys, in
No real beat. “Golf Galaxy.” Ed bobs his head and grins.
“Yeah, I just had to go in there the other day, when Brad and I went on a spice run. I tried that Sasquatch driver, too. The good news is, I still hit all my shots into the woods and the ones I get really good spin on slice right into the lake. So--“
“It’s not a matter of equipment,” Ed finishes.
“I signed up for their Advantage Club, so I get a free 12 minute lesson,” Dave went on. “I was looking at the coupon this week and it says that it expires on December 24, 2006.”
“I bet you’re going to make sure you run down there and get that lesson,” I said.
Dave grinned. “I got a little worried, so I called up. They said I could ignore that date.”
“They just want to get you into the store,” Ed said. “So you’ll spend money there.” He kept squeezing one of his heavy balls. Ed has a heavy ball, a slightly deflated exercise ball, Everlast finger squeezers, a balance gizmo that had Lizzie going for at least 30 minutes, windmilling her arms at an alarming rate, and a ball with rubber finger holes to stretch the palms and fingers that looks like a cartoon alien without a hand in it. That’s all the stuff that goes on the first floor. The basement, complete with heavy bag and punching bag, is another matter.
I shook my head. This had to be handled delicately. “Interesting,” I said. “You’ll drive all the way to
Sheepish smile. Shrug. Ed smirked. Kristy leaned against her hands on the wall and sent me warm eyes over a Mona Lisa mug. Cheri played therapist: she didn’t say anything. Lizzie kept rolling on the exercise ball.
This morning, Dave announced that he had to go out shopping. “I’ll get the Christmas tree stuff we promised the church,” he said, “and then I’ll head over to the Gap.”
Solid. I swallowed my smirk with a sip of coffee. “Have a good time,” I said.
Back two hours later, he interrupted my blow-drying to make an announcement. “Well, it’s official. I’m really old.”
“Oh? No pleated khakis at the Gap, eh?”
“No.” He grinned. “All flat front, no cuffs. Ugh. And all the jeans are in a style I can definitely live without. Weathered, shaggy. ‘Distressed.’ But that’s not the real kicker.”
He dumped his neon green Gap bag, emblazoned with silver peace signs, on the bed. “It gets worse,” he said. “I was in Target, looking for the T-shirts and socks on the old man’s list”—we took two wish lists off the tree at church: one puzzle for a 6 year old, and T-shirts and ankle socks for a man in a nursing home—“and I was looking at the undershirts when two young women came by. They were looking at things and one said, ‘ I have no idea how to pick these things,’ and the other one said, ‘Why don’t you ask that man over there?’ ‘What, the goofball by the socks?’ the first one said. And I had to be the goofball by the socks, because there wasn’t anyone else around. ‘You’re evil,’ said the second woman. ‘That’s someone’s dad.’”
The goofball by the socks grinned at me, hands on his hips. “The kicker is,” he said, “that I’m someone’s dad. That’s the nail in the coffin.”
I told him that now I had a new subject for my blog—I’m married to the goofball by the socks. “That brings you down another level,” he said. I’m lower than the goofball because I’m married to him. I’m married to someone’s dad. “Because you could have married someone better, but you didn’t.”
At least the goofball dad has a nice new charcoal gray sweater and a pair of flat front khakis from the Gap. That’s got to be worth something, eh?