Saturday, March 03, 2007

Soup of the Month

“So,” I say to my husband. “When were you planning on telling me?”

He looks at me with that male, “I know I’m in trouble for something but for the life of me I can’t think of what” look on his face.

“About the news,” I say. (I’m being cagey on purpose.) “When were you planning on telling me the good news?”

He’s still perplexed.

“You know, about the Soup of the Month Club.”

Yes, much to the envy of all of his friends, my husband has been nominated for membership in The Soup of the Month Club. Two 15-ounce tin cans of soup delivered to your door every single month, all for the low, low price of $12.95. I know! I found it hard to believe myself.

It makes me wonder though. Who is it out there who thinks my husband so exciting he warrants membership in such a club? I do a mental scan of the people in his life, the ones who might associate my husband’s name with soup. I’m reminded of the college pranks he and his friends used to play on each other. Signing someone up for a subscription to Cat Fancy magazine, or maybe Playgirl. I think my all time favorite, perhaps because it’s the most vicious, was when my husband got a subscription to The Socialist Worker for my ROTC brother-in-law.

And now I’m struck with not a little fear. Is this just the beginning of the karmic repercussions? What’s next—toothpaste of the month? Potted plant of the month? Who knows where this might lead!

For a while there, product of the month clubs were all the rage in gift-giving at our house. I gave my husband a one-year membership to a Beer of the Month Club for his birthday one year, and he like it enough to renew it for several years thereafter, until beer guru Michael Jackson ended his association with that particular club and my husband noticed a precipitous drop off in the quality of the exotic beers. I was relieved. It was always me who had to sheepishly sign for the case of beer delivered to our door by the UPS guy every month.

A few years back I gave my mother a six-month membership to a Wine of the Month Club. Hmm. I notice a disturbing alcohol-related theme here, but it’s not nearly as disturbing as finding a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon inside my mother’s refrigerator. When I called her on it, she gave me the most disturbing news of all—that it actually tasted pretty good when she mixed it with ice and a little Kool-Aid.

If only I’d known about Soup of the Month back then. And I’m still waiting for my Orchid of the Month Club gift subscription, which would be about the right pace of orchid reception considering the rate at which I kill them. But I imagine I’ll have to keep waiting, the gift subscription to the [fill-in-the-blank-with-your-choice-of-nonsense] of the Month clubs having fallen into a bit of disfavor at our house. A little post-traumatic stress induced, at least partly, by the whole Cabernet/Kool-Aid incident.

My husband took his Soup of the Month Club membership nomination postcard over to the computer and immediately looked up the website. “I don’t know,” he says. “This looks like a pretty exclusive club.” Is it possible he’s letting this thing go to his head?

He continues to scan the website with a discriminating look on his face, then says, quite seriously, “If they’d throw in some crackers, I’d think about it.”

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