I've said this before. With special loving detail to things like having to spend half an hour on the phone with mom teaching her how to copy and paste text (highlighting is hard! /barbie). But we're here today to discuss something specific.
No one in my family knows how to use a wishlist.
I've finally trained them all to go to Amazon.com and find wishlists. And I know they know how to order things from Amazon - I walked Dad through that a few times. (Yes, these are people who hold jobs and drive cars and everything, and I need to walk them through online shopping.)
Now, this is what a normal person does:
1. Go to wishlist.
2. Click "purchase item".
3. Give credit card information and shipping information and stuff.
This is what my parents do:
1. Go to wishlist.
2. Print wishlist out.
3. Take wishlist to store, and buy things at store.
4. Call us to tell us to take things off wishlist.
I cannot imagine why they do this, save that it gives them some sort of satisfaction to hold an object in their hands. I don't know. But that's what they do.
(They're training my sister in this, too.
Mom called: "Ali got her the chemistry set, take that off the list."
Me: "You said yesterday that Ali was getting her the physics set. Are you sure she got the chemistry set, or is it the physics set?"
Mom confers with Ali: "Physics set. You know, that's not chemicals. That's building stuff!"
Me, pained: "Yes. Pulleys and stuff. That's physics."
I want to remind you that I am not blood-related to these people. My biological family? Much smarter.)
Now, the problem with this method is this: While they're wandering around the store, or while they're puttering around at home after shopping, someone else is going on Amazon.com. And someone else is buying what they bought, because it's not been auto-removed from the wishlist like it would've been had they shopped like normal people.
But I have discovered that their habit is just a charming little quirk when compared to my Aunt K. Granted, Aunt K.'s the one who had the nervous breakdown, but still.
Over the past week, we have learned that Aunt K.'s methodology is as follows:
1. Look at wishlist.
2. Order some items used.
3. Order other items from a completely different vendor.
4. Don't tell anyone.
Which is why Elayna's getting two copies of the Teen Titans GameBoy Advance game, and which, combined with Mom's lack of skillz and everyone's tendency to look only at the few items on top of the wishlist instead of sorting by priority, is why she is getting three copies of book one of Fruits Basket and Cameron Dokey's Sunlight and Shadow, and two copies of Jerry Spinelli's Milkweed (that last not being Aunt K. related that I yet know of).
And it was almost worse. Mom called from the bookstore the other day....
"Does Elayna have Stargirl yet?"
Adam: "That was bought off her wishlist already."
Mom: "Fruits Basket?"
Adam, heaving a quiet sigh. "['song's mom]? Um, when did you print that?"
Mom: "Last week."
Adam: "Okay. Other people have been shopping since then; lots of the books have been purchased."
Mom: "Should we just take her out shopping when we get her here?"
Adam: "Great idea."
Because, y'know, four copies of a book? Even Adam says that's crazy talk.
And she still needs the damn chemistry set.