Today is apparently "Christmas in July". Did I get anything? Nope. Did I get anyone else something? Not really, just a contribution to a retirement gift for one of the nicest ladies I know. But this made me remember a conversation I had a few weeks ago during a wedding, when I learned that people don't shop using the baby/wedding registries!

What kind of stupidity is this?

I just learned that when someone is having a baby or getting married and they tell people where they're registered, that people just buy whatever the hell they want.

How completely incompetent as a shopper do you have to be to not be able to follow a list that says, "Buy me THIS stuff, since this is what I want"?

Ladies, from a guy, and I think I speak for all men, "Thank you for the list!" I don't know what the hell you want, or what you think would be good to raise your baby. I don't know what you and your bride think you're going to need for your new life together. Why would I stray from the list and get you something I think you MIGHT like, when you have so politely and conveniently provided me with a list of stuff that takes any thinking on my part out of the equation.

  • You want lime green nipple-clamps for you and your husband? Done.
  • You want a scary clown mobile for your baby that I think will give them nightmares until they're forty-five? You got it.
  • Please make sure I don't get these gifts mixed up.

Which (finally) brings me to my point.

Gift registries should be expanded to include any gift-giving occasion that is coming up.

Christmas, birthdays, baby-namings, quinceañeras, promotions, retirement, first dates, first poos, anniversaries...I don't care, if there's something I'm going to have to buy a gift for, hook me up with a registry. That way I don't get you ANOTHER vomit-colored tie, or a set of porcelain donkeys that clash with your ceramic dolphins. That way I can get you something I know you want, instead of just wandering aimlessly through aisles, hoping something will come to me.

The Amazon Shared Wish-List is a great idea, but it should be set up like a registry, so that if someone gets you something on your shared list, it goes away. That way you don't get seventeen copies of The Complete Mork & Mindy Box Set. (This is my fall-back gift this year, I've just now decided - be warned. Okay, maybe just the terrible final season.)

Do I know what kind of video games your kid wants and doesn't already have? Did I know that your wife is allergic to polyester fibers and only wears 100% cotton? Can I tell you the shoe size of an of my friends?

Please, give me a list of what you want and I will happily spend more money on you.

If only because you helped make my shopping experience that much easier.

Just don't ask me to wrap it competently, I'm a guy. And yes, one year I wrapped all the Christmas gifts I bought with aluminum foil.

Don't judge me.