Somehow I missed a milestone point in my life, and nobody even bothered to point out the fact that I had missed it.
At what point in my life did it suddenly become a good thing to be given clothes as presents? I've noticed that at least the past three or four years (about as long as my long-term memory is good for these days) I've been pleased as Punch to get clothes for Xmas, birthdays, Father's Day, whatever the occasion. Work pants and polo shirts, boxers, socks, it doesn't matter, clothes at some point became the gift of choice.
So why wasn't I warned? Why didn't someone tell me "Hey dude, you best enjoy getting toys and games, because one day you'll get tired of stuff like that and start being happy over ties and shoes." Although I would think that it would take a few years for me to actually believe something like that, at which time I'd already be past the mark, having missed it's arrival.
What I'm curious about is this: was it a gradual thing, or was it all at once? Was I struck in the head one May afternoon, only to find that getting a pack of socks was suddenly the coolest thing in the world, and that I didn't miss getting the Imperial Battle Cruiser Playset that was on my list? Or was it instead a gradual thing, one year's T-shirts were suddenly not so bad, and the next year's sweater a welcome addition to the closet?
I think one of the main mitigating factors was the day I finally had to start working for a living and buying my own clothes, which strangely enough coincides with the day I became a careful shopper. I had never realised that all these things I had to date had been bought somewhere, usually at exorbitant markups, and when it fell to me to purchase three pairs of black chinos for my job it struck me like a vat of dye that those things don't come cheap. That must have been a major turning point, being hit in the wallet like that. That was the day that it became cool to wear sneakers until the sole was hanging on by threads, and jeans didn't really become worth wearing in public until the knees were torn to shreds and the material was about as thick as a good handkerchief. That was the moment in my life when I could look a gift box of button-down shirts right in the eye and say "Cool! Earth tones, my favourite!"
I know that this means that one day I might grow up.