A Girlfriend for Christmas (some assembly required).


As I consider buying my Christmas gift from Santa to me, I must consider just how much work is involved in getting it under the tree before I wake up Christmas morning. Yes, living alone is complicated and somewhat disturbing. Still, I have tools and a touch of smarts. I can do this.

This year’s gift may be a fancy thing I stumbled upon called: Girlfriend.

The picture on the outside was compelling. There was no significant wear and tear except for a few dents and bit of sun damage. Perhaps the last person who handled it was a little rough. Although no batteries were required, it came with batteries. Fascinating. There was also a note saying it was suitable for ages eighteen and older. As expected, there was some assembly required using common household tools.

I’m equipped–perhaps not “well equipped,” but equipped nonetheless.

I loaded the gift into my cart and struggled to balance it as I approached the cashier, who was cute until she wrinkled her nose at my purchase. Perhaps she felt I was too old to take full advantage of that particular model. I didn’t appreciate the attitude, so no tip for that apron-wearing killjoy.

Once I got the box out to my Jeep, it started making noises. It sounded like it said, “That barbed wire license plate cover is gay.” Surely, a minor adjustment to my toy (not my Jeep) was required. I opened the door, loaded the toy, and headed home, anxious to enjoy my new Girlfriend. During the ride I heard another disturbing noise from the box: “You realize you’re speeding, don’t you? The speed limit is thirty-five.” I was tempted to u-turn and return it, but sighed and sped up so my toy learned who was boss.

When I opened it on my living room floor and spread the parts to begin assembly, I made some interesting observations:

  • There was substantial damage caused by the designer, toymakers, previous owners, and plastic specialists.
  • The toy insisted it was too cold to operate properly. After I adjusted the thermostat, the toy said it was too warm. This wasted much time. I needed much beer.
  • It didn’t approve of my décor‎ and insisted I “lose the poker table and fuzzy comforter.”
  • Its hair changed length and color frequently.
  • For proper operation, the toy required significant amounts of red wine, yogurt, and facial cream.
  • All sorts of loose parts were in the bottom of the box, including nails, earrings, and eyelashes.
  • Although it came with many accessories, it required brand new shoes and purses. When I sought a reason why, the toy said, “Because.”
  • The toy warned me that its previous owner wants it back.
  • It insisted I change the music playing, the TV channel, and my jeans.
  • I couldn’t pry the phone from its hand.

I don’t think I’m ready for this toy even though I’ve been a good boy. A bottle of Silver Oak would bring me more joy.

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Author of humorous essays about relationships and lifestyles.