Christmas is all about Sexy Money. Sexy Money is money spent on diamonds and smiles. Sexy Money likes to show off by making children giddy and best friends say “You shouldn’t have,” when they don’t really mean it. Sexy Money never has regrets.
Sexy Money shops at art galleries, Italian shoe boutiques, Pottery Barn, and over-priced electronics stores. Sexy Money loves museum gift shops, leather, suede, handblown glass, and anything considered “impractical.” Sexy Money sleeps with the latest Neiman Marcus catalog under the pillow.
Sexy Money despises words like replace furnace, new roof, or needs braces for three years. Additionally, mold in the basement and broken septic pipe are against Sexy Money's religion and any mention of them make Sexy Money instantly envision lunging for the phone to call that sleek Art Deco hotel in Miami, the one right on the beach near that trendy coffee house, to book a weekend getaway.
Sexy Money does not waltz into Home Depot to look at refrigerators. No. That makes Sexy Money cringe. Refrigerators are part of contract negotiations inside a marriage, they are never even in the same zip code as Sexy Money.
Once, a husband might (ruefully) utter a phrase like, “So this Kenmore fridge can be our Christmas gift to each other,” but a wife will immediately (if not sooner) wilt him with a look, a look that says Tiffany’s is down the street and that is where we are headed next, you fool.
A husband might (sadly) still not get it and continue on with “In that case, let’s just get the $700 one, I think a fridge that costs any more than that is just a waste,” to which a wife will rub her ears and wish at that moment that she was partially deaf, like her dad. Instead, she will ignore the comment, march over to the sales manager and declare, “We want the floor model. Knock 25% off the price.”
The sales manager will flinch, just a little, and then follow up with some mumbo jumbo about how they never sell floor models, blah blah blah.
A wife will look the sales manager right in the eye, not just the eye but the deep center of the pupil, the only person who ever looked in his eyes that deeply was his fifth grade teacher when he was reprimanded for cheating off his friend’s homework, and a wife will say, “Sir, I refuse to spend a penny more. I know it’s December and all, but this is not Sexy Money.”
The sales manager will laugh, of course he will laugh. He is not familiar with this new term, but he is already figuring out how to work the phrase into his next conversation. He will be in the back stockroom about five minutes after this couple leaves, regaling his co-workers with the story of The Refrigerator Purchase Not Being Sexy Money.
A wife and a husband leave, without a resolution and without any new kitchen appliance. They return home to their lovely Colonial and its rebellious refrigerator that refuses to keep things cold anymore and instead actually warms things. The couple has been eating a lot of protein bars lately.
After a few more days and a few high-pitched conversations and some late-night Internet trolling for appliance deals, there is a phone call confirming the delivery of a new refrigerator, one that keeps things cold as it was designed to do.
There is also a distinctive robin’s egg blue box with a white satin ribbon under the tree. Sexy Money, indeed.
*with infinite thanks to Stephanie S. for sharing her story and also to Peggy for my new favorite term!!!