Funny things happen to my husband when he is getting ready for something important, he gets spendy. All of a sudden the things that were good enough yesterday are no longer good enough for today.
Let me start at the beginning. Somewhere along the line, long before I came into the picture, my husband was introduced to fine twilled linens, specifically those made by Armani. He bought a new suit for his medical school interviews and wore that suit for probably 10 years. It had a good life.
When it was time to interview for residency, he would have liked a new suit - but at the end of 4 years of medical school with a wife and new baby is hardly the time to buy a new Armani suit, so we settled on looking at a new tie. Not just any tie would do. We went into Nordstrom. A Burberry tie. We didn't buy it then, because reason finally grabbed hold of him (being married with children has a way of doing that). But being the good wife I was, I memorized that tie and bought it for him the next day. It was his birthday after all, and this was a moment that should be marked by a new tie - and I hadn't gotten him a gift yet. That tie landed us a residency spot in a city we loved.
Fast forward 5 years and it is now time to start interviewing for fellowship programs. It is an important interview, at an important program, with important people. He is afraid that old suit won't make the right impression so the suit hunt begins. I am a wet towel and tell him that an Armani suit will not make magic happen. I balance the books around here and there is no money for an Armani suit. He tries them on, they look great, he really wants one. No can do. So the poor man settles for a Brooks Brother Suit in a fabric that won't wrinkle, on sale at the outlet store. (Incidentally, he loves that suit). New suit lands us our prime fellowship in a city we love.
Now we are on the cusp of THE interview of all interviews. This is the interview that has been in the making for the last two decades (almost). This is the interview in the city that is THE ONE. So what does he do? Time to buy a new tie! The man has dozens of ties. I get the whole psychological reasoning for wanting a new tie, I do. If it makes him feel more confident, then it is what it is.
Let me remind you that we have just spent our entire savings moving to this new state and getting set up/licensed/etc and we will have gone a month without a paycheck. We head to the Macy's near our neighborhood to look at the ties, and he selects a Tommy Hilfiger tie on sale $39. It was a nice tie, but what do I know - they all look alike to me. Not to him.
Later that night I catch him online looking at Armani ties. Before I know it he has located the nearest Neiman Marcus and we are planning a trip. I say a trip because we don't live in the part of town that has a Neiman Marcus, we have a Macy's.
My husband is giddy. On the freeway we see a Lamborghini. As we pull into the parking garage we see another Lamborghini. I can't remember the last time we saw two in the same day. Remember my husband is the car guy, without a car. He has one, he just doesn't like it. Where are we?
By divine providence we park on the same level, on the same side as the men's department so we don't have to look lost for too long. We are not Neiman Marcus material, and I don't ever think we will be. No offense to anyone who shops there, I am sure it is lovely. Going there with children in tow really livens the day up. I picked up what looked to be an over-sized bowling ball bag from the clearance table. I thought it looked like a nice overnight bag. But for $2,500 I think I can make do with what I already own. Kids, don't touch anything! He asks me if I want to look around? NO, thank you very much I just want to leave as soon as possible.
In the end he left happy with his $165 Armani tie. How can something so small cost so much? It is a tie! If this tie gets us THE job, I won't bring it up ever again and will forever revere the name Armani.