It's funny 'cause we've been together long enough for me to remember him turning the big 2-1. I gave him underwear (two pairs of Tommy Hilfiger boxer shorts, because it was the '90s) and took him to Red Lobster (because when you're practically a child and you've grown up in a rural area, that counts as super fine dining). Then he went out with his friends, undoubtedly to drink, and I went home because I HAD TO GO TO SCHOOL THE NEXT DAY OMG I WAS SUCH A BABY.
I mean I was a senior in high school, but still.
This is a photo (okay, a terrible photo-of-a-photo) of us on our very first official date:
Seriously! Look at my little baby face!
And here we are as we look now, nineteen years (and four kids) later:
Geez, just typing that sentence made me feel like driving 20 mph to the store for some Depends and some Geritol.
Anyway, there have been a lot of birthdays between then and now, and I'm ashamed to say that none of them have been more remarkable than underwear and Red Lobster because a.) we've been poor as shit for many of them and b.) I suck at birthdays.
I have these grandiose fantasies of doing something amazing to commemorate his fortieth, like renting out a room at a winery (he loves himself some nice red) or giving him a wonderful present like the motorcycle I told him he could get when he got promoted to Staff Sergeant in the Air Force ... a decade ago. (He's not even in the Air Force any more. But still motorcycle-less, poor guy.)
The problem is, we share a bank account, and I'm too scatterbrained to remember to secretly squirrel away money here and there - snacks I can totally hide, but money, not so much. So that kind of rules out doing anything expensive or impressive.
He's not a sentimental type of guy (I get him a sappy card, he reads it once, smiles, and leaves it on the counter until I throw it away), so a "through-the-years" type photo book or something would literally be opened once, on his birthday, and then collect dust somewhere. Meanwhile I'm over here still hanging onto the Cheesecake Factory receipt from February 12th, 1999, the night he proposed to me ... ahem.
So I don't know what to do. I just know I have eleven days to come up with a not-completely-terrible birthday celebration idea for the guy I adore more than chocolate itself. Sure, this is a man who accidentally pepper-sprayed our entire household. Who followed me around Target in farty-sounding shoes. Who reported our poor innocent neighbor to the police. Who wore fake Halloween teeth around for a year like it was his freaking job.
But he also sent me on a girls' vacation and even wrote a guest post for me while I was gone. And he didn't stay mad for long when I accidentally called him a fat-ass, or got him a present addressed to "Mr. Simpleton," or when I overshare to the entire Internet about things like our failed attempt at "getting it on."
I need to do something wonderful for his fortieth birthday. WHAT THOUGH?!
He likes ...
- Red wine
- Meat. Like whatever kind of meat. Even nasty meat like bull testicles and weird gamey things
- Motorcycles, even though he doesn't have one
- Country music (gag!)
- Clothes and shoes, because even though he likes a lot of stereotypical man-things he's oddly refined
- Watching the Outdoor Channel (and then doing the things he sees on there like hunting and fishing)
- Foot massages
- Meeting new people - he is totally outgoing
- Vowing to start working out, and then not
He's not so into ...
- Sitting through movies
- Sappy things
- Sports (he likes them, just isn't one of those rabid fans who has to watch games all the time)
- Reading (boohooo!)
He works A LOT because he loves his job and has a very strong work ethic, but also complains of being worn out. He doesn't smoke. He's generous to a fault. He's a fantastic, devoted dad and loves doing things with the boys. He is pro-level excellent at billiards and fairly average at golf, but he enjoys them both.
Any ideas, y'all?