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Pretty Woman, Anyone?

I was recently given a belated birthday gift by a retired professor in my department. Actually, I wasn't given it--I have to go retrieve it. "It" is a designer top of my choosing from an upscale ladies boutique that I've never heard of, nor have had any reason to know of, as it probably does not cater to my mainstream fashion and discount shopping sensibilities. When he told me of his intended gift while in my office one day, he encouraged me to go to this store, and told me its whereabouts, and pick out a nice top--any top I wanted, regardless of price--and just tell the clerk that he was paying for it. When I tried to refuse such a kind gift, he became very stern and repeated, "please, please." With such mannerly insistence, how could I then decline the offer? So I accepted, and agreed to go to the boutique and pick out a top of my liking regardless of price and tell the salesperson, "it's on Dr. So-and-so." When I pictured myself doing this, I couldn't help but conjure up images of a certain film about a classless prostitute who is made proper by her rich and cultured client, suddenly imbued with a conscience to help the poor girl. So in an effort to fix her up, he sends her on a shopping spree to designer stores she would never have previously patronized, or had the means to patronize. This made me further wonder, what was this professor thinking when he thought of such a gift for me? Did he view me as a hard-working but unfortunate young girl in need of refinement? I began questioning my own self image, which I didn't consider to be terribly tragic or in need of revision. Perhaps, though, his motive was as innocent as wanting to give a nice gift to me, but not wanting to risk picking something out himself. In such an instance, though, as one keen friend pointed out, the modern day gift card might have sufficed.

Comments

I can see where it would be easy to read into it, but I do think it really charming that he chose a bit more personal gift a little outside of the current social norm instead of just another generic giftcard to remind you that you're ultimately just another line item on 'x' company's balance sheet...
Lee Davidson said…
Note to self: no gift cards for Jonathan ;)
C said…
so did you get anything?
Lee Davidson said…
I did. And while the average price for a top in that store was about $200, I managed to find a top on sale for $50, which was half off the original price!

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