Tuesday, December 08, 2009

How many watches does Ayelet really need?

Apparently the magic number is five.

JV and I went outlet shopping on Sunday. He needed jeans for work (engineers!) and I thought it would be fun to shop for them together, which made one of us. I also needed waterproof boots and dressy but comfortable black shoes for work. Impressively, I needed less than 45 minutes to get 2 pairs of shoes and a pair of boots, for which JV was somewhat grateful. The jeans didn't take much longer.

On our way out of one of the malls, JV stopped me next to the Seiko outlet.

"Let's look at these watches for a minute," he said. "Which ones are nice?"

"You want to get a watch for your sister?" I asked.

"Yeah, maybe," he said. He's such a bad liar, which I suppose I should be grateful for.

The selection wasn't great. "I don't really like any of them," I said. "They're too small. I like big watches. But some of them are interesting shapes. I don't like round watches, they're boring."

We went back to his house so he could get some work done before dinner. He flipped open his laptop and said, "Come look at this." It was a page of watches. He pointed to one.

"I was thinking of getting you that one for Chanukah," he said. "But..."

"... it's much too expensive," I said. It was close to $300. "And..."

"You don't like it?" he asked.

"It's okay," I said. "I would prefer silver rather than yellow gold. I wear more silver jewelry. Also, I could find it for you cheaper, but I already have four watches. After I lost my favorite watch last summer, I got myself three to replace it, to cheer myself up."

"It comes in silver. But I don't know if you could find it for less," he said. "I really looked."

"Give me five minutes," I said. Actually, I needed less than 30 seconds. Using the style number and Google shopping, I found a discount website offering the watch for about $150.

I'm not very good at not gloating. "We agreed shopping was my area," I said smugly. Then a thought struck me.

"Were you just getting this for me because I told you we were celebrating Chanukah?" I asked.

"No, I would have gotten you something anyway," he said. "Do you like it?"

"It's lovely," I said. "But..."

"... you were hoping I'd get you something else," he finished.

"Kinda," I said.

"What?" JV asked.

"Earrings, I guess," I said.

"What kind of earrings?"

"I can send you some links," I said. "But I also like the idea of you choosing something for me."

"As long as you get to approve it," JV noted dryly.

"Well..." He had me there. "Am I that high-maintenance?" I asked.

"Not compared to my ex-wife."

I should be grateful she set the bar so low. "If you want to get me that watch, I'll be happy with it," I said. "Seriously. It's beautiful. But I feel like I should upgrade your gift."

"Don't," he said. "Please." I got him a pepper grinder, because the first time we cooked together in his house, he had peppercorns but no grinder. He had to chop them up with a knife, which is extremely inefficient, albeit entertaining to watch.

JV loves klezmer music -- his parents always played it when he was growing up. He also likes classical music. A few years ago, I heard an excerpt from the "klezmer Nutcracker" on NPR. I tried to explain to JV the difference between major and minor keys -- he's incredibly tone-deaf, so although he appreciates music, he can't necessarily hear the difference between major and minor.

Klezmer music is usually in a minor key, and most of the Nutcracker is in major keys. So I got him the CD to teach him the difference. If that's possible. I'll have to see. In any event, he likes classical music and klezmer music, and this is kind of both.
Copyright (c) "Ayelet Survivor"


  1. Nice. You can always add on to your gift with extra little gifts, too. They don't even have to cost much, just be something thoughtful. Which your gift already is.

    I like to buy Chanukah presents (when I can afford any at all... not this year) in smaller gifts in groups of 8... :) one for each night.

    It's nice that he wanted to get you the watch. It's even nicer that he didn't mind your switching it to earrings. Men (probably especially engineers) like buying something that's useful as well as attractive. Also, he probably wasn't entirely thrilled that you insisted on finding a cheaper version, even though I totally understand that your motives were good. For men, it's a point of pride that they can spend money on a gift. And I'm sure he can afford it. Next time, don't fight so hard. Just accept it graciously, because that's your gift to him.


  2. You're probably right that an engineer would want to give a "functional" gift ;) But the reason he decided against the watch was that it was a little too costly for the relationship stage we're currently in.

    I probably didn't need to prove that I could find it for less, since we've already established that shopping is my area.