It's Christmas of some year a long freakin time ago. I was 23 years old and dating a nice young man, we'll call him Mr. Romantic. I had been dating him maybe 6 months by the time Christmas rolled around and he was spending more and more time with me in my tiny little apartment.
Mr. Romantic often complained to me about how small my place was and that we should spend our time together at his much bigger townhouse. He said he only had one roommate, but anytime I was there, there were at least 47 people and several kegs of beer. Plus the whole place smelled like feet. As tempting as it was to go over there and play beer pong and quarters, I chose to stay in my tiny little abode - if Mr. Romantic had a problem with it, no matter where he was, my front door was always 5 feet away and he could find his way out.
So you understand just how small the apartment was, here were some of his complaints:
*It was not possible to have more than one person in the kitchen at a time. Seriously, if you wanted in there and there was already someone there, you had to press your back to the wall so they could leave before you could go in.
*The bathroom was so small there wasn't even a place for me to put a trashcan. When opening the door it would bang against the toilet. Slide in sideways and one step through the doorway and you're in the shower. The sink was so small I believe it came out of a Barbie Dream House. An old Barbie Dream House at that. You know, one that your grandmother would have stored in the closet at her house and you had to pull it out whenever you came over. Because it was either play with that or the plastic thing with the long blue handle that you would push around and it had the balls inside that would pop. Unfortunately, the one at your grandmother's house had been beaten to death by the 29 grandchildren that came before you so it didn't pop anymore...which left you with the Barbie Dream House and 1 Barbie with a bad hair cut and a one legged Ken. Both naked.
*The combination living room/dining room/ bedroom/ office/ media room was only about 9 ft X 9 ft. I had a full size bed, an end table, and a 13 inch black and white TV. You had to sit on the edge of the bed to watch TV. I chose to only watch Leave it to Beaver and other shows from that era since they were in black and white - this way it didn't seem quite so pathetic that I didn't have a color television.
Anyway! It was Christmas and I was going to put up a tree, somewhere. I found a tree - so small that even one string of lights was too much for it. Of course, having half the lights on the tree and half lying on the floor pleased my cat, who would grab the cord and take off running pulling the tree behind her.
Good times. Good times.
Mr. Romantic shows up one day and places a HUGE gift under (next to) the tree. It was not only big, but it was heavy. I quickly figured out that this box was to mislead me. There were bricks in there. My mind was working overtime on why he would need to disguise a present. And it hit me. Holy SH*T! He was going to ask me to marry him. It was an engagement ring. It had to be. I called all my friends and explained the situation to them and they agreed that's what it had to be. You see, Mr. Romantic adored me (I've met me and I can't say that I blamed him.) He loved to talk about "some day when we have kids... ". But it felt too soon to get engaged.
I had my Christmas with Mr. Romantic the day before I flew out to be with my family. My mind was made up: I had no choice but to say no when I opened the present. My girlfriends agreed there was no way I could accept that ring. I wasn't ready to get married. In my guilt, I spent an insane amount of money on him. Designer clothes, a watch, and a leather jacket.
When I opened my gift, I see I was right about the bricks. But i was horribly wrong about the engagement ring. No ring. It was a bathroom trashcan. You heard me right... very narrow trashcan that would fit between the toilet and the shower. You wouldn't believe the delight on his face when he showed me it would fit. He had secretly measured and everything.
Oh, sneaky! And the bricks! Well, without those, I certainly would have figured out what it was.
You can't imagine the joy I felt when the phone started ringing. My girlfriends. They wanted to know how he took the rejection. I got to explain to each of them that I accepted his fabulous trashcan. Their response to this was the same as mine when I opened it... silence. Because, really, how do you thank your boyfriend for giving you a trashcan at Christmas without it sounding sarcastic?
Oddly, I stayed with him another 6 months...right before my birthday rolled around, I panicked and dumped him. I think every one of you would have done the same thing.