Today’s blog is a guest entry written by a good friend of the blog’s, Joe Boo of Eat with Joe. He’s a food blogger, but wanted to branch out and write about the non food world. Enjoy!
This past Saturday, I went to a co-ed baby shower for my friends Sherry and Rich, and I dreaded it as the day approached. Not because I have anything against Sherry and Rich, they’re two of the nicest people you’ll ever meet and their future child is lucky to have them as parents. No, I dreaded the moment for a completely stupid, selfish reason.
You see, baby showers entail bringing gifts. Gifts need to be wrapped. I am the worst gift wrapper ever. I HATE GIFT WRAPPING. Some people look at birthday parties, baby showers, Christmas and weddings as joyous occasions. Not me. I think of them as potential pitfall where I might be forced into doing something I’m not good at and revealing my shortcomings as a man. That’s a horrible scenario I can’t live with.
The last time I actually wrapped a gift was a couple of years ago. I ended up wrapping a couple of pages of the LA Weekly around a min-football helmet I got for my friend’s birthday and fastened it together with Scotch tape. My friend said it looked tacky. Considering that there was a movie ad for “10,000 B.C.” peering at the gift’s recipient, she was probably right.
I realized just how bad I was at gift-wrapping when my girlfriend from a few years ago asked me to help her wrap Christmas gifts. She planned a romantic night of wine drinking, Christmas songs and wrapping gifts.
The first item she gave me was a simple, rectangular box of wine glasses. I folded wrapping paper around the box, but didn’t use enough and left bare spots. I tore off a small piece to patch up the empty area, cut out more wrapping paper to smooth over the patch work, then used even more wrapping paper to even everything out. By the time I was done, a new, seven-sided geometric shape was invented.
My girlfriend looked at me like a Special Olympic athlete who successfully ran 100-meters without falling. To cut a long story short, she ended up removing me from gift-wrapping duties, doing it all herself, and not going to bed until 1 am. That romantic night did not end with me getting laid. It was tragic in every way.
My friends might be shocked to know how much I hate wrapping gifts. I usually bring an immaculately wrapped gift to gatherings. A couple of my friends might’ve even questioned my sexuality because of this (no straight man could tie a chiffon bow like that!). But here’s my dirty little secret; I pay someone to wrap gifts for me.
Specifically, I pay Vanessa and Amy at the Daily Planet Bookstore in the Beachwood Canyon area. For the past 10 years, I’ll bring whatever gifts I have, pay them $2, and have them make it look all pretty and shit. Since I usually end up buying the actual gift from there, they encourage my gift-wrapping ineptitude. It’s good business for them. Sometimes, I’ll buy wrapping paper from them as well. $2 gets me either a very basic monochromatic wrap or a gift bag. I usually don’t care either way as long as it looks professionally done.
On Saturday though, my wrapping choices were either an ugly beige wrapping paper or a black gift bag. Neither of them exactly screamed “congratulations on having a baby.” But I had no choice. Damn if I’m going to wrap seven burp towels by myself. I chose the black bag.