Friday, June 06, 2008

Shirley Temple Blues

Okay. So today I was out shopping and just "looking around the neighborhood". I went to Taylor's Market and then stopped at Dish..a vintage store that has so many wonderful dishes, toasters, waffle makers, toasters, china, fiesta ware..and my favorite stuff...VINTAGE LINENS. I had a blast there. Well, I went into one little room that had a sign.."feel free to look in the cupboards"..which I happily did. There, I saw it. I nearly cried. It was like there was an aura around it! The absolute perfect all-time gift for my mother-in-law, who is 78 years young... an original Shirley Temple Mug. Here is the story she told me once, maybe twice:
Everyone got a Shirley Temple Mug but her. By the time she was old enough, her mother tried to pass off an old Tom and Jerry cup with her name on it. She knew it was not the Shirley Temple mug that she coveted. She felt very left out and unworthy. She actually got tears in her eyes when she told me this story.
So, did I buy that $50.00 mug fabulous original Shirley Temple Mug..about 4 inches tall in perfect condition? Yes, yes I did. I could hardly wait to give it to her. I was so excited.
I took it over to her..wrapped. I explained to her that I had just found the perfect gift and was so happy to give it to her. She opened and looked at it and said, "I'll be damned! {she seemed pleased} but, I have one". I am shocked, dismayed and I say, "where is it?" She says, "it's in the Friskies cat food bag..we use it to scoop out cat food for Prissy". I say, "but I thought you didn't get one?" She says, "well, I did after my mom died".
I almost broke three of her fingers when I tried to pull it away, saying I'd take it back. She didn't seem to have a clue how I felt...nor did anyone else, including my husband who showed up when I gave it to her..or my FIL, who said he wouldn't use their cup for cat food anymore. Dave was just happy they weren't using their mug to scoop out the litter box.
They all laughed. How would you have felt?
Be sure to stop by Dish a great store!
I keep hitting hard returns so that I have paragraphs...but nothing is happening. Damn!


Hahn at Home said...

Well, I think I would have, had I been MIL, been a little more gracious. There was no reason for you to even know - unless you happened upon the original in the cat food - then you might be upset if you'd found out that's what they were using the original (you thinking it was the one you gave her) for.

Our old stories of damage - sometimes we hang onto them far longer than they actually bother us - just to have them - maybe as a reminder. Maybe that's what Shirley's cup was for her.

Take it back if you can. Know you did a very thoughtful thing. Hopefully, MIL will have some gracious response when she thinks about it - but all you can do is know you did a nice thing.

Eileen and Sue said...

I think I would have cried! Then I would have punched Dave for not getting it.
That was so sweet and thoughtful of you. Lori is right, your MIL could have been more gracious and just said thank you. Take it back and just buy her something else.
You've got a good reason to be pissed and hurt.

Ann said...

It's always exciting when you think you've found the perfect gift for someone. So I can understand your disappointment. Did you tell your MIL how excited you were when you found the mug? If so, then she certainly should have felt more appreciative than she seems to have. Oh well. Take it back and get something for YOU. Dish is a great shop.

Mike S said...

This is so typical of my adoptive mother's behavior I'd actually expect it from her. I'm with Hahn, I'd have been far more gracious, as my aunt taught me well in that respect. Sometimes we seem to expect the person who we're interacting with to have the same level of excitement and emotion as we do, and when that's the case, we're often disappointed as the other person doesn't feel as personnaly vested in the subject as we are. We sort of inadvertantly set ourselves up for disappointment at times. As my aunt always told me, smile, be grateful, and be gracious and you'll never go wrong.

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

To answer your question, I would have felt the three Ds: deflated, disappointed, and devasted.

You had me so excited for you, what a tragic ending. :(

It was a tactless response on her part, but as a writer, look at the fodder... you got a post out of it.

Can you ask for it back? I mean, tict for tact, I always say.

- Margaret

Melly/Melody/or Mel said...

Thanks everyone.

I went over today and told her I'd take it back..and she actually said, "no, I really like that you got it for me, it means alot to me".

Geez, go figure.

Mike, I did set myself up. I won't do it again.

Our old stories of damage...I think I've held onto a few of those myself.