This evening, I was busy putting away clothes from the laundry. I was folding a particular top when I suddenly wondered whether I had an accessorizing chain for it. So I immediately abandoned my laundry and went off to check (yeah, I come up with innovative ways of putting off tiresome chores).
While rummaging through my accessories collection, I came across a pendant-chain and suddenly remembered - this chain was a part of a gift-set given by my friend M after her return from her first trip to the USA when we were in undergrad.
That time, seven of us in the hostel used to be very good friends. So M had brought us all back similar gift-sets consisting of a chain and matching ear-studs in elegant paper boxes. She handed it out to us and gave the last box to R, apologizing at the same time "Sorry, they did not have any more matching sets, so yours only has a chain and no ear-studs - please don't take offense". The rest of us were silent for a moment and then all the gift-recepients (other than R) burst out at the same time "R, can I please, please exchange my gift-set with yours?"
You see, R's chain came in a small, cute metal box. And all of us wanted the cute box more than any of the other contents! M was taken aback - she had been under the impression that R was getting the raw deal! Obviously, we other girls did not think so.
I have noticed that most girls have a strange attraction towards boxes of any shape and size. The boxes in question just need to be made of somewhat durable material and be at least half-way decent looking. When I see such a box, I get busy mentally allocating a space for it in my apartment. Never mind that I already own dozens of such boxes. Just the thought of adding another "nice" box to my collection somehow makes me happy. I always rationalize that I can store something or the other in it and of course, I could always use it for gifting.
I still haven't explained to myself as to how a person can find a use for every single of her gazillion boxes (some boxes being so small that a pepper-corn would have difficulty fitting inside it) but there it is!
I know I am not alone. I remember my friend S had gone perfume shopping last year. I recommended one of my favorite fragrances, J'adore, to her. But I also added a warning, "Don't buy too much of it though, you will never be able to finish it." S sagely accepted my advice and went off shopping.
When she returned, she called me and sheepishly told me "Archu, I bought the biggest J'adore bottle they sell!" My jaw dropped and I started laughing, "What? Adi paavi, after all my advice! You are going to be smelling like J'adore for the rest of your life - hehehehehe....". S interrupted me, "I couldn't help it you know - they had this really, really, really cute box for free if I bought the biggest bottle and I simply had to have the box."
And suddenly, enlightment dawned - the perfume marketers had it right! Throw in an ultra-cute box with something and most women would never be able to resist and would simply go rushing to buy it. S never settled on any particular use for the cute box and now it has been stashed away somewhere out of sight but she is still happy when she talks about it. I know that feeling :-D!
This year, a friend C and I had decided to make handmade gifts for each other for fun. I chose an unfinished wooden-box from the arts store Michaels and also bought a bunch of decorating materials. I had a great time decorating the box. On the day of the meeting with C, I filled it with chocolate truffles.
So pleased I was with my "finished" box that I showed it off to my friend V at work - he looked at it and declared it to be very nice. Then he thoughtfully added, "But what will C do with the box once the chocolates are eaten?" I confidently said, "Oh, C will store something else in it or will simply keep it." V doubtfully agreed, "Ooooookaaaaaay - if you say so." Then I started having doubts myself about how well C would like the gift.
I needn't have worried. After all, C is a girl. She took one look at the box and went "Ooooooh, how cute! So nice, now I can store knick-knacks in it. Ohhh, the box is a wonderful idea - I think I am going to get boxes for my other girl friends and decorate them and give them as gifts" - LOL :-D!
I have never noticed this box-hoarding or box-loving tendencies in guys. Is this something which only afflicts girls?