Wine Racket

March 26, 2008

I’m not going to be critical about the various ways in which people gather up good stuff…ah, what the heck. Sure I am.

Being the original glass-house stone thrower, I have repeatedly and anxiously and enthusiastically sent people to my wish list. This began when the Internet was born during Al Gore’s reign as jester and has continued. I don’t say continued “yearly” or continued “monthly”. I just say continued because you can go get my wish list at any time, day or night.

This wish list is constantly up-to-date and if you’re ever in doubt of what to purchase for me, I like the three C’s—CASH, CANDY and gift CARDS. Further, April is my birthday month, so get moving.


Now that we’re clear that I’m a gift grubber, let’s talk about HYPOTHETICAL events that I hypocritically find in mediocre taste.

1 – fundraisers with exorbitant price tags that ‘require’ you to spend even more money while you’re there. I’ve been reading Boston Magazine and wondering why I never get in the CityStyle Snapshots. Now I know. I’d have to spend many thousands of dollars (which I would do for the right cause), but I’d also have to get dressed up and that’s where I draw the line.

2 – people who don’t make it easy to buy them gifts. DGSKLDHGLKEHRSWKATIEQOPUETITHDSB and Ben have registered at many accessible and common places. Their gift requests are reasonable and I have already purchased and sent them their wedding gift. Yes, I was the first one. See how much I VALUE a good gift giver?

Well, the people who annoy me are the ones who register at a dinky craft shop in Iowa that doesn’t have a phone or a Web site. If you’re going to make it hard for me to buy stuff, then I’m going to revert to my standard wedding gift of a cooler, a toolbox and a Home Depot gift card. Just ask George Joncas. That’s what he got.

I think I got Adam something similar, but it was a year late because I didn’t have a chance to stop at the mall on the way to the wedding. And for Mike and Lisa I just changed around their registry because I seriously couldn’t understand why they had registered for such low-end crap. Then I bought them something that they (I) had registered for.

3 – themed gift events. Molly, a charming and gorgeous hottie who would be up there with the region’s most eligible bachelorettes if she weren’t married, is helping to organize a wine shindig for her sister’s wedding.


Contrary to the title of this post, I don’t have a problem with this event. Her sister and sister’s fiance are huge foodies who love wine and the event shows some ingenuity. I’m planning on gifting the following two bottles and seeing if I can’t put every other guest to shame.


And this little beauty—unless I drink them both before next week.


But enough about me, let’s talk about the themed events I hate.

How about themed events that don’t follow a theme? A barbecue baby shower that has nary a baby on the grill.

Or the wedding that is just a quickie vow exchange and not a proper service, sermon and session of contemplation in the house of the lord. Don’t push me, I love long weddings that make you sweat down the back of your tux and into your crotch. Long drawn-out events that make you almost faint from hunger. Full-on piety-filled festivals that give you paper cuts from flipping through bibles and hymnals and all manner of leather volumes. That’s what we need more of.


and 4 – events that are organized in your honor (say a birthday or retirement or book launch), but have an ulterior goal like raising money for some other cause. You run into these a lot when you invite MLM people to your parties. They might be enthusiastic at first, but what am I going to do with a gift that’s just a 50% savings off a 200% marked-up service that I didn’t want in the first place?

Wow. I guess I was worked up. Maybe to soothe me you could get me a 15-minute shoulder massage at a local therapist.

More to come…