Yesterday I took my mother to Party City. She loves to go there to get her cards for birthdays and anniversaries because the cards are 50% off. There are three aisles of cards. Three. And gezillions of cards in each aisle. My mother likes to move slowly, reading each card, mostly asking me to read each card, so that she can make sure the message is appropriate for each intended recipient. She had five birthdays and two anniversaries to satisfy. This took a very long time.
She especially likes the sappy cards (where “of” rhymes with “love”), full-on exclamations of love and affection. The poetry is extremely important and meaningful to her. And while the experience at Party City was sincere and relevant for her, it was oh so painful for me. Taking Hallmark so earnestly made my teeth ache and my eyes burn. When she finally finished making her selections and we worked our way to the cash register she told the cashier that the last time she was there she bought two cards and there was no stickum on the envelopes. She asked if she could get two more envelopes. Sure the cashier said and we had to go back to those overwhelming (and overlit) aisles with me complaining to my mother that she could just use tape or a glue stick and how could she be sure she was getting the right size envelopes. She pointed to the two envelopes she wanted. They were quite large.
My mother was quite pleased with herself when we got back into the car. She held her bag of cards very tightly, a bit exhausted after all that emotional work. At Party City, you can get all the sentiment and personal poetry you want for half off. Quite a bargain. For some, that’s more than worth the effort.