Carded

by Marinka on February 18, 2011

OMG, I almost had a nervous breakdown at the Hallmark store this week.   For some reason I am the only person in my family who buys greeting cards for other people. Which is sort of inexplicable because I am the person who cares about cards the least.  I mean, I seriously don’t care if you just Paypal me $20 instead of sending me a card.  I’m sorry. I know it’s unAmerican.

But my mother-in-law loves greeting cards, so in anticipation of her and my father-in-law’s anniversary, I headed to the local Hallmark store.  It’s located at Rockefeller Center and confuses me a little bit. Because the people who work there are nice and helpful, so obviously they’re some kind of an Al Quaeda front.  Remind me to report them when I’m done with this nonsense.

So I go to the Anniversary section and there are all these cards that I can’t even believe. “To My Wife, To My Queen!” some scream.  Others imply that the love that the card giver is presenting to her husband is monitored by angels. 

I don’t know.  I float past those and settle on the generic “Happy Anniversary” cards.  But then I don’t want it to be too generic, because my in-laws have been married for 55 years, so I’d like some pizazz. 

But all the pizazzy cards say things like  wishing you many years of wonderful memories together, which is totally the kind of crap that I can get behind, except my in-laws are in their 80s, and I don’t want them to think that I’m being sarcastic.

So then, I’m just overwhelmed.  So I call Mama.  And I tell Mama that the anniversary is coming up and she becomes very animated and says “thank you for telling me, I will get card!” and I say, “calm yourself, Mama, I am already one step ahead of you. At the Hallmark store.  And I will buy you a card if you want.”  And she is so, so grateful to me and I bask in my own heroism, until I realize, “asshole, now you have to find two cards that say something non-sarcastic and non-ridiculous.” 

So I ask Mama for advice, but Mama has her own problems.  Because she went birthday card shopping recently for her niece who lives in Russia, and all the choices were along the lines of “sex joke or weight joke and very inappropriate, like all America is obsessed with sex and weight.” Mama had a hard time deciding and finally settled on a card that showed flowers, roses which you can’t go wrong with. Apparently this recent trauma is still too fresh in Mama’s mind and she is totally useless as the Anniversary card adviser.

So I’m cardless. And I’m this close to asking the Al Queda operatives for advice on which card to get, but I don’t want to be that person. You know, the person who’s so dependent on foreign and terrorist aid that she can’t select a card. So I pick them out myself. They’re a little more bland and have a little less pizazz (by the way, how come I’ve never noticed that pizzas and pizazz are practically the same word?) but I think they get the message across.

I’m so glad that we’re starting a three day weekend, because I’m exhausted.

___________________

Please visit my friend Annie today, as she marks an important anniversary. My thoughts are with her. I’m in awe of her strength.

One year ago ...

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{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

empress bee (of the high sea) February 18, 2011 at 1:33 am

i KNOW! man i hate those card stores. i just bought a birthday card for my son-in-law this week and it was so traumatic i ended up putting five hundred bucks in it to cover up the fact that i can’t buy a simple card for kraps sake. at this rate i will outlive my money by years and years. krap on a stick.

smiles, bee
xoxoxoxoxoxo

px: thanks for visiting! see, i’m back!

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Mwa (Lost in Translation) February 18, 2011 at 3:11 am

Do you think the terrorists would tell you to get one of those that play a tune when you open the card, only replace it with an exploding mechanism? Wishing you many happy – BOOM – how’s that for sarcasm?

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GrandeMocha
Twitter:
February 18, 2011 at 7:27 pm

That is AWESOME!

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Lady Jennie February 18, 2011 at 3:21 am

I thought you got carded, and I was going to be all like “yay you!” I would be thrilled to be carded.

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GrandeMocha
Twitter:
February 18, 2011 at 7:29 pm

I thought she got carded too.

I got carded a couple years ago. It was such a nice feeling. I can’t remember who I was with or what we were celebrating but the bartender wanted to see my id. I left a nice tip.

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From Belgium February 18, 2011 at 4:04 am

tsk tsk tsk, you didn’t make them one yourself? No Martha points for you my dear.
Also: happy anniversary to your in laws!

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christy February 18, 2011 at 6:14 am

What you need to do is buy a variety package of pretty cards that are blank on the inside. Then you can simply wow everyone you send them to with your home-made wit! 🙂

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Noelle February 19, 2011 at 2:32 am

Blank inside? Talk about pressure! lol

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vodkamom February 18, 2011 at 6:46 am

Psst, what’s your address? I’ve got a card for you.

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Megan February 18, 2011 at 10:14 am

I feel the same way about cards. I considered writing cards to make extra money, but I just couldn’t make myself care enough.

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the mama bird diaries
Twitter:
February 18, 2011 at 10:39 am

I hate picking out stupid cards. Now I go by price alone. I absolutely refuse to pay more than 2.99 for a card. I mean that is the top. So if it says, “Have a wonderful bachelorette party with your stripper” and it’s for an anniversary, well, than so be it. I tried.

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joeinvegas February 18, 2011 at 10:58 am

You can get the Hallmark software and make your own cards.

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Awesome dude February 18, 2011 at 11:12 am

I have some Kodak moments depicting an autopsy room scenes….can be carded….patenting the idea?

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Lynn MacDonald (All Fooked Up) February 18, 2011 at 11:21 am

When i was in my 20’s (yeah, a million years ago) and deeply in love i used to shop for cards ALL THE TIME as if i couldn’t express myself with spending a buck. Now, i’m like whatever, and i never buy cards. My kids make me joke cards and i frakking love them. If these people don’t know i love them by now, fuck em.

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Alicia February 18, 2011 at 11:30 am

Personally, I’ve always taken a lot of crap for stockpiling sympathy cards. I mean, okay, I can see how people would find it a little morbid. But sympathy cards are the WORST. They are either really religious (which, you know, just because someone has died doesn’t mean they came to Jesus first) or they make it sound like you have this great knowledge and wisdom about the person that exceeds that of their own children or spouses (“You will always have the treasured memories so she can live in your heart.”) Clean and simple. That’s how I like my sympathy cards. When I find them…I buy.

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M.M.Mama February 18, 2011 at 11:58 am

Hallmark also stresses me out. I can never seem to find a card that I actually want. Then after I have perused over about a million cards I finally, reluctally, pick one that I think is okay. Then I get the the register and it is, like seven freaking dollars! Ummm…it’s paper for g*ds sake, $7, really? So, yeah, I feel your pain.

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annie February 18, 2011 at 12:06 pm

Greeting cards suck but you don’t! (you can use that on your next our blank card if you want)

Thanks for the link and the amazing support!!! I feel like i should go buy you a card or something.

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Yuliya
Twitter:
February 18, 2011 at 3:52 pm

Isn’t announcing their anniversary on your blog gift enough?

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Wendi
Twitter:
February 18, 2011 at 6:58 pm

I love Papa’s idea. CSI is the next greeting card trend, I just know it.

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Slow Panic
Twitter:
February 18, 2011 at 10:55 pm

i can’t take the greeting card pressure. can’t take it.

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alexandra
Twitter:
February 18, 2011 at 11:43 pm

I can’t do cards, I just can’t.

They all sound so co-dependent..

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Peajaye
Twitter:
February 19, 2011 at 12:18 am

If you’re interested in scoring extra points with your Italian-American in-laws, here’s a tip: underline some of the words in the greeting card. Yes, I know it sounds insane, but the folks seem to think it gives the card that extra personal touch.

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dusty earth mother February 19, 2011 at 8:48 am

That is totally true! I didn’t realize that was all Italian-Americans, just thought it was my insane family.

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dusty earth mother February 19, 2011 at 8:51 am

I loathe greeting cards. I won’t even put them on gifts for my kids’ friends, I just have my spawn sign their names on the wrapping paper. And apparently my dog feels the same way. He got up on the dining room table and peed on the card I gave my husband.

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Becky February 19, 2011 at 9:15 am

I am totally a Hallmark whore. I have a frequent shopper discount card. I can spend upwards of $75 every other month for birthday, anniversary, get well, thank you, holiday (Valentine, St. Patrick’s Day, etc.) and sympathy (love those multi-packs!). God help me if someone gets promoted, buys a house, has a baby, etc. Hello, my name is Becky. And I’m a card-o-holic.

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Ann's Rants
Twitter:
February 19, 2011 at 3:00 pm

I have a total perfectionism about picking out cards. Well about everything but now I give myself a limit.

Which is easy because for some reason The Lord ALWAYS makes me have to take a dump when I’m card shopping. I know this is blasphemous but it also happens to be true. Nothing like an emergency bathroom situation to cure card perfectionism.

Kisses!

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Stephanie Smirnov
Twitter:
February 19, 2011 at 6:31 pm

Pizzas is an anagram for “I spazz” which loosely translates as “What Marinka does in Hallmark stores.”

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alexandra
Twitter:
February 20, 2011 at 1:34 pm

Laughing at what Dusty said:not just Italianos, either.

Yes! The hispanic mother that underlines every single word a thousand times, and then adds exclamation points.

Like this!!!

I have become that.

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Alexandria
Twitter:
February 21, 2011 at 2:17 pm

blank card with a pretty flower on the side.

and ps i think you should do a vlog with your mom because i just die for russian accents.

Reply

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