Birthday GIfts for a Narcissist

Birthday Gifts for a Narcissist

 

It’s birthday season for a particular gifted and talented young man in your life. The only problem is that he’s a terrible narcissist and you don’t want to encourage that particular aspect of his personality. Then again, he seems to like it when you bring it up, and you suspect it’s because it gives him an avenue to talk about himself. Well, this year, you have the opportunity to start a dialogue, starting with a simple gift.

It could be a just a 3-pack of pocket sized, ruled Moleskine notebooks in standard black. This way, the birthday boy can jot down important paradigm shifting thoughts. The problem with having an enormous intellect is the interface between it and the world, and for birthday boy, scratching down ideas for improving work flow around himself, patents for marvelous inventions for making his life and yours easier, and whole speeches to be given to the world. After all, if you make life easier for the narcissist, you really are making life easier for yourself, he figures, because his best interests should also be yours. That is the crux of the problem -the narcissist doesn’t know where he ends and the world begins.

If your narcissist isn’t a writer, a fitting gift is anything from the Orvis catalog. I suggest a snug pair of driving moccasins which cushion his soles like his mama’s hands wrapped around his tiny baby feet. Or a pair of shorts with a repeating embroidered pattern of a rising brook trout. Or a monogrammed over and under 12 gauge shotgun handmade in Italy with a choice of ivy patterns. Orvis is what happens when L.L. Bean kicks out all of their insufferable narcissists and they decided to form a better, cozier company just for themselves.

If you have any talent in the arts, a gift of your work might suit a narcissist well. I suggest an ironic oil painting of your birthday boy as the Dear Leader, one hand outstretched palm up to represent giving, the other on his waist with thumb down to represent humility, giving a thoughtful lecture about world peace to a gathered crowd of people who all look on with rapture and ecstasy. If you have the talent, but not the time, a quick study with chalk would be fine with birthday boy posed as St. Sebastian, but remember to seal it because chalk is messy.

If your talents are in the crafts, might I suggest a diorama. Suitably ironic statements about your subject’s narcissism would be a tableau depicting Little Bighorn, with your birthday boy as General Custer, and all of the people in his life as the Sioux. How about the back stabbing scene from Julius Caesar with your narcissist as the man who would save Rome. A manger!

And finally, there are services on the internet designed for the narcissist. No, I’m not talking about Twitter, or even Facebook -it’s not 2009 for goodness sake! You can send in a picture of your beloved narcissist and there are companies that will fashion action figures complete with appropriate, tasteful wardrobes and useful accessories. You can chose between the small minifigures and larger, GI Joe scale action figures (not dolls!). You can also order bobble head figures. When I last looked into this, it’s much cheaper to order in bulk, so a group of friends can go in together on this gift in such a way that they themselves would receive the gift of a bobble head of their narcissist friend at an appropriate remove from the birthday -Christmas let’s say.

Of course, if you are pressed for time, you can always order an engraved iPad. I suggest the white 64 gB version with 4G LTE from Verizon engraved with, “To you, from me.”

NaNoWriMo Update

Video update of my NaNoWriMo project, Abandonner: A Memoir of Regret. It is taking all of my powers of literacy and observation of women in their natural environment to write this exploration of the feminine psyche from the perspective of men who abandon them. I am writing in the Chick Lit category.

The 25 Things About Me

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This is a chain letter circulating around Facebook -this is my contribution. My soul has been bared. 

Rules: Once you’ve been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it’s because I want to know more about you.

(To do this, go to “notes” under tabs on your profile page, paste these instructions in the body of the note, type your 25 random things, tag 25 people (in the right hand corner of the app) then click publish.)

25 things about me

1.Imagination -my imagination tends to run amok. Ally MacBeal was a bit jarring to watch because on some levels, my brain works in a similar fashion.
2.Navel gazing -I am a chronic self examiner. Combined with number 3, blogging and Facebook suits me like swamp water does for a frog.
3.Exhibitionism -Yes. I am a bit of an exhibitionist,. Not in the trenchcoat with no pants way, but more in the need for getting everyone’s attention. But I have a purpose!
4.Food -Food, good food, obsesses me to the point that I have to force myself to view food as a bodily function and not the center of my day. Spam is the pearl of American food, by the way. I can be seduced with food. I prefer savory over sweet. 
5.Bloody mindedness -I have a masochistic streak. My personal motto was set at four, when I declared to my whiny cousin Eugene, “Namja neun ch’ah muh ya deh.” which loosely translates to “a man must persevere.” Stoicism appeals to me, even though I may unstoically complain of its absence. Once, out of boredom, I pulled out 5 of my remaining baby teeth at age 10.
6.I can’t talk about number 6. It involves the Plaza Hotel, the Harvard Club of Boston, Locke-Ober, The University Club, the Four Seasons of New York…There I said too much. They might be reading this.
7.Doing things from scratch -I enjoy creating things from elemental items. For a cucumber and tomato salad, I grew these items along with the chives and then became flustered over not being able to make the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and coarse pickling salt. I then contemplated making the bowl out of the clay from the deeper soil of the garden. The longer the process and the shorter the reward, the greater the appeal. I like to fish with flies that I’ve tied myself, and dream of catching fish in Central Park with just the items from a sewing kit from one of the hotels. 
8.Narcissism -I tend to personalize everything. You are me, and he is me, and we are me, and we are all together -isn’t how that song goes?
9.Golf -I play golf in my mind when I’m not thinking about myself or what I’m going to eat next. I’m a big baby.
10.Rules -I like structure insofar as it draws lines for me to cross, if I can.
11.Impatient -I am not terribly patient.
12.Grand Gestures -I am a bit of a primitive or a throwback in my love and appreciation of grand gestures. Think Taj Mahal or the Defenestration of Prague -actually scratch that last one. 
13.Mongols -Yes, I love anything Mongolian. I would love to live in a yurt with forty horses and my clan in tow going from pasture to pasture. 
14.Chimpanzees -I can sit and watch them all day for weeks on end if given the opportunity. Their inner workings are so mysterious.
15.Women -I can sit and watch them all day for weeks on end if given the opportunity. Their inner workings are so mysterious. 
16.Minorities -The Yakuts, the Kipchaks, the Tai Dam, the Hmong, the Hottentots, Parsis, everyone Stalin moved around, the Piraha, remnant hunter gatherers of the world, Central Asian Jews, the Celts, the list goes on and on. Fascinating stuff. 
17.The Encyclopaedia Brittanica -I used to read it obsessively.
18.Scouting -I was an avid cub scout, but made the mistake of not going beyond Webelos. The ethos of scouting has always been a part of my worldview. 
19.Fishing -I can usually catch fish. A good skill to have. 
20.The Next Thing -My To-Do list is a branchy, multiply bifurcating clade of the next shiny, neat thing to figure out or do. I enjoy constantly remaking my environment.
21.School -If I hit Powerball, I’m going back to school forever. 
22.Anchovies -I really enjoy the salty, super fishy flavor of anchovies on the side with a freshly made Caesar’s salad.
23.Writing -If I had to do it all over, I would have put more effort into writing and storytelling. 
24.Love -I am a believer in true, romantic love. The kind that gives you strength, perspective, and a clear vision.
25.Purgatory -If the Old Testament, hellfire Christians are correct, then the best I can expect is to be in a line with quadrillions of people ahead of me, a line that includes Gandhi, Socrates, the Buddha, the entire pre-Columbian Aztec nation, most everyone who has ever lived in Marin County, aborted fetuses (each wearing an original sin pin on a simple gray smock), spilled semen (reconstituted as hopping demi-beings with whiplike tails, wearing half a black tee shirt with Onan in globby white letters), and a couple of my high school teachers. We’re all waiting to get processed and sent down a large hole in the clouds. We entertain each other with stories about our lives. I’m surrounded by a couple of billion demi-people who claim some relationship to me…