19. Gift Cards“Is he more of a ‘Subway’ man or a ‘Ruby Tuesday’ kind of guy?”

“No idea.”

Laurie and Isabell stood at the rack of gift cards. They had been there for five minutes, trying to figure out what to get their new boss, Brent, for his birthday. They had collected $55 from the office, and had no idea what to get him. They decided to punt to the gift cards section, and had finally narrowed it down something in the “food” category, not knowing if he was a “Best Buy,” “Amazon” or “iTunes” kind of guy.

“Geez,” Laurie said. “It shouldn’t take us this long.”

“Hard to buy for someone who barely comes out of his office,” Isabell said. “I have no idea what he likes or wants.”

“Are we sucking up to him?” Laurie asked.

“No, we’re just trying to make a good impression on the guy who’ll control the bonuses this year.”

“So, sucking up, then.”

“Maybe a little.”

“Does he have a wife or a girlfriend? Should we get him a sit-down couple’s restaurant card or a lonely-guy Starbucks card?”

It was getting late in their lunch hour. “Got it,” Laurie said. “I’ll close my eyes and point to something, and that will be that.”


Laurie closed her eyes, circled her arm in a wide arc and then in increasingly narrow ones until she stopped. Isabel picked up the card.

“Hmm,” Isabell said. “P.F. Chang’s. Is there even a P.F. Chang’s in town?”