Cars with big bows

All the luxury-cars-with-big-Christmas-bows advertisements this time of year perplex me. I’ve never been married, but I can’t imagine being married and making a purchase the size of a car without discussing it with my wife first. I can imagine the conversation.

“Surprise, honey! I bought you a car for Christmas!”

“What do you mean, you bought me a car? What you mean is, we bought me a car, which we are going to have to make payments on, and you didn’t talk it over with me first.”

“I thought you’d be pleased — one of your friends has this model, and you kept talking about how much you love it.”

“Yes, I know, but that doesn’t mean I thought we could afford it.”

Of course, I’m sure there are some couples where one spouse could independently buy the other one a car, but I would think that a) it would be a relatively small part of the market, and b) if the car-giving spouse is independently wealthy, chances are the car-receiving spouse is also wealthy enough to have purchased his/her dream car on his/her own.

And yet, when I was looking for the photo image above, I found a news release from a company that makes big bows for just this purpose — and they say they sell 25,000 of them a year. Now, 60 percent of those sales are to dealerships, who use the bows to decorate cars on the lot or in the showroom. But that still leaves 10,000 bows sold directly to consumers. Of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean that all of those cars were true surprise purchases (or even cars). And some of them were probably less-expensive cars, even used cars, that were given to teenagers. The company says its big seasons are Christmas and graduation.

So what am I missing here? Have you ever bought a car for your spouse without telling your spouse first?

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