My Reverse Birthday Gift

Wednesday, my wife of eighteen years turned 40-years-old.

Tuesday evening I was sweating because I hadn’t ordered her big birthday present yet. I narrowed it down between two things she’s been talking about — a fancy DSLR camera and a new laptop — and had pretty much decided on the laptop, only I hadn’t ordered it yet, mostly because they go on sale next weekend and I could save $50 if I waited a few days.

While the two of us were sitting in the living room watching television, a commercial came on for some new car (I think it was the new Ford Focus) that comes with a turbocharger.

“Still can’t outrun the WRX STi,” I said. I’ve been talking up Subaru’s little pocket racer, the WRX STi for years now. The sedan is okay but I’ve always been a sucker for a hatchback, and when Subaru released the hatchback version of the car this year, I fell in love with it. It’s completely impractical mind you, but an approaching-40-year-old guy can still dream about being a kid again.

At that point Susan turned to me and said, “we need to have a talk.”

“Oh crap, what did I do?” was my first thought.

She handed me her laptop backwards (with the screen facing away from me) and said, “do not look at the screen yet. I need to do get something.”

As she walked into the kitchen to get something, my hands began to shake. Was I in trouble? What was on the screen? My mind was racing and then I thought to myself, “This had better not be a picture of a sonogram on this screen.”

Susan returned from the kitchen with a stack of papers. At that point I had another thought.

“Holy crap I am being served right here in my living room!”

She then informed me that she had got my birthday present a few months early. I was still trying to figure out if it was a third O’Hara baby or a $68 divorce from Budget Divorce Service when she said I could turn around the laptop. On the screen was this picture:

She then handed me the paperwork and the keys. I asked her what did this mean? She said I bought you your car. I said, which car? She said, I bought you a 2013 WRX STi hatchback. I said, the really fast one? She said, yes, the really fast one.

I then stood up, walked out on the back porch, and threw up spaghetti. That’s Susan’s favorite part of the story.

She said I couldn’t have it yet because they were tinting it at the dealership. The following day, on Susan’s actual birthday, after work but before her birthday dinner we drove over to the dealership and there it was, waiting for me. The salesman really only had one question for me, one I’ve heard a dozen times this week: “Your wife bought you a car for her birthday?”

Everybody has pretty much got the same answer: “You’d just have to know her.”

If you’re not a “car guy” then you may not be familiar with Subaru’s WRX STi. The beginning of this review I found sums it up pretty well:

The Impreza WRX STI is the performance flagship of Subaru’s compact Impreza lineup. Available as a sedan or a hatchback, the STI is a rally-bred, enthusiast-focused machine that features a 305-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder.

Providing power is a 2.5-liter boxer four that produces 305 horsepower at 6,000 rpm along with 290 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm with the help of a turbocharger. The only transmission is a six-speed manual. Fuel economy for the STI is 17 mpg in the city cycle and 23 mpg on the highway, according to the EPA. In reality, STI drivers likely rarely see these figures as this car was built to be driven. Hard.

The end of the review says that the STi suffers from a sparse interior, louder than normal road noise, and an overly stuff suspension, followed by “those shopping for an STi are likely not to care about those things.” Too true.

No word yet as to what I am getting Susan for my birthday. For her birthday, chances are she’s now getting both the camera and the laptop.

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6 comments to My Reverse Birthday Gift

  • Paul Kane

    Rob, you hit the lottery…..
    ….with Susan.

    Bask in the glory of acquiring the dream wife. And Happy Birthday, Susan.

  • Mikey

    Haha! Awesome man. Jackpot indeed.

    You do know, however, she had to buy you this before you drove the wheels off hers. heh-heh

  • Happy Birthday guys! (sweet ride bro)

  • Matt Bailey (Wild Card)

    Maybe this is a subtle hint that she wants her dream car for her birthday. You better get on that sir. She set the bar pretty high right there.

    Also, Happy Birthday Susan.

  • Mom

    Paul has it right. The car is fabulous, but Susan is the greatest gift you’ll ever receive! You’re a lucky man.

  • Awesome!!! I’ve had a WRX and an Impreza wagon but never an STI. My wife promises that the next new car is mine, I’m hoping for an STI. :-)