Printed from:

Welcome to Columbia Magazine  

Carol Perkins: The Birthday Gift

Previous Column: Carol Perkins: Title IX

By Carol Perkins

In trying to find a gift for Guy for his birthday, I came up with a unique and somewhat off-the-wall idea. Guy loves walking on the beach, so I tried to think of something along those lines. He has binoculars, so that was out. He had beach-walking shoes, so I ruled that out. Sunglasses...has those, too. I searched online and found a great idea, or I thought it was.

A metal detector! He could walk along with the beach in the early morning hours and search for precious jewels or whatever might be there. This would be something new and maybe fun! I looked at the various kinds, and most of them were large and bundlesome and would draw attention to an otherwise private walker. He wouldn't want a stranger stopping him with a "Finding anything?" question. Then the perfect metal detector flew off the page. A hand-held one-a wand.

When he opened his gift, he was speechless, but not necessarily in a "Wow, this is wonderful" kind of way.

I explained why I had bought it and he turned it from one side to the other as if he would see something he had missed. He read the instructions and walked (bent over) around the house to listen for beeps. We haven't found our key fob lost in my car, so he took his wand out there. Nothing.

After a few hours of pretending (I now think) that this was an excellent gift, he said, "You do know that this is more of the type of wand used at the airport." No, I hadn't made that connection. "Can you see me walking all hunched over on the beach with this thing?" (It is only 24 inches tall.) He was laughing and soon I caught the giggles, too. NEVER had it occurred to me that this WASN'T the perfect beach gift. If you've been "wanded" at the airport, then you know what Guy got for his birthday.

"You never ceased to amaze me," he said one day as he was holding his wand, ready to "hunker" over in the yard to search for lost items. "Come to think of it, you wouldn't even have to bend over." Short joke? I was tempted to respond.

You can contact Carol at

This story was posted on 2023-01-20 16:12:24
Printable: this page is now automatically formatted for printing.
Have comments or corrections for this story? Use our contact form and let us know.


Quick Links to Popular Features

Looking for a story or picture?
Try our Photo Archive or our Stories Archive for all the information that's appeared on


Contact us: Columbia Magazine and are published by D'Zine, Ltd., PO Box 906, Columbia, KY 42728.
Phone: 270.403.0017

Please use our contact page, or send questions about technical issues with this site to All logos and trademarks used on this site are property of their respective owners. All comments remain the property and responsibility of their posters, all articles and photos remain the property of their creators, and all the rest is copyright 1995-Present by Columbia! Magazine and D'Zine, Ltd. Privacy policy: use of this site requires no sharing of information. Voluntarily shared information may be published and made available to the public on this site and/or stored electronically. Anonymous submissions will be subject to additional verification. Cookies are not required to use our site. However, if you have cookies enabled in your web browser, some of our advertisers may use cookies for interest-based advertising across multiple domains. For more information about third-party advertising, visit the NAI web privacy site.