Friday, December 15, 2006

August Max Woman

One of the most anticipated moments on Christmas day at my house is the revealing of who ends up with the August Max Woman box. This goes back many years. It goes back so far, that I can't even remember the year it started.

Sometime, probably back in the late 80's or early 90's, one of the men in the house received a gift that had been placed in an old August Max Woman box. Many of the gifts we give each year are placed in boxes that make those gifts hard to predict -- like putting a DVD inside an old Cheerios box, or placing a gift certificate inside of an empty box of Ritz crackers.

You just have to make sure that the actual gift is better than what the box makes you think the gift is. In other words, don't put your clip-on tie for Uncle Bill inside your empty digital camera box from last Christmas.

So, the August Max Woman box was cause for a few laughs, and as is the case with many of these boxes, it got reused year after year. You can never have enough old shoe boxes, or clothes boxes for next year's gifts. And, as the years went on, the August Max Woman box kept popping up. Its' peach color helped it stand out, too.

After awhile, having one of your gifts inside the August Max Woman box was almost like receiving an award. The box would elicit a bigger reaction than whatever was in it.

Two years ago, my parents feared the worst. They couldn't find the August Max Woman box. Maybe it had been thrown out with the trash the previous Christmas. We needed a replacement, so mom grabbed another box that would serve as AMW Box II. The new box had a label on the side of it, explaining that the August Max Woman box was no more -- complete with an R.I.P, headstone, etc. -- and that this was to be its replacement. We came thisclose to having a moment of silence for good 'ol August Max Woman box.

So, a few minutes later when I gave a gift to both my mom and dad, you can imagine their shock, joy, and bewilderment when that gift was nestled inside -- you guessed it -- THE AUGUST MAX WOMAN BOX!!!

We had it all along. Since we hosted the previous Christmas, the gift ended up staying at our house for the year, and my folks didn't realize it. The moment the box is rediscovered, reborn if you will, is captured on video, and one of these days, I'll throw the audio on the show for you.

Last year, Megan received the box, and even she knew how to react. She peeled away the wrapping paper, saw what was in front of her, and squealed with delight, "I GOT THE AUGUST MAX WOMAN BOX!! I GOT THE AUGUST MAX WOMAN BOX!!"

Not many families grab the camera to capture the magical moment when one of their loved ones receives a box -- no matter what is inside.

Yes, we are a bit strange. In a good way.

So, who is getting the August Max Woman box this year? It's anybody's guess. I know we don't have the box, so it's going to come from my parents. What will be inside?

Does it really matter?

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