During these strange times we are living through, I think it’s even more important to tell that special someone we are isolating with exactly what they mean to us.
Commercials used to advise love-struck men to “Say it with diamonds.” Sadly, they were never exactly clear about what ‘it’ meant. My best guess is that ‘it’ meant “You need an item that could be used in fashioning rudimentary tools or bartering in the event of a societal collapse.”
Which is why, on Sunday, I was pleased to find something that could substitute for “it.” You see, during a solitary walk in a stretch of woods, I found an antler that was shed by a small buck sometime around January.
I quickly realized that, given the choice between the type of diamond I could afford or a shed antler that I found on the ground, my special someone would probably opt for the antler. Women are, after all, highly practical, and an antler, as we all know, can at least double as a back scratcher – or if you find a matching set, a pretty fancy set of salad tongs. Moreover, a shed antler is a unique work of art, much like a snowflake, since no two ever bear the same rodent tooth marks.
Before you think that you now have the key to romance, let me explain there is a right way and a wrong way – OK many wrong ways – to give a woman a shed antler that you found.
First, let’s focus on the right way. And that means keeping it to three points or less.
Sure, you could give the love of your life a four-point shed antler but it’s really far too ostentatious and, eventually, you’ll both regret it. The nearest I can liken this to is Gollum and the One Ring. Every time she brings out the antler, you’ll lust for it and mutter “My Precious” – especially if it has long tines and good mass.
And that’s not good for a relationship in the long run.
No, if you really love her, you should say ‘it’ with a three-point antler or less.
Now let’s discuss a few of the other missteps you should avoid. Chief among these is not giving your special someone a found antler if it is still attached to the deer skull. That’s just overdoing it and something you should save for an important anniversary – such as the one that celebrates your biggest brook trout.
Also, you should not try to give antlers to her in earring form – unless you give her a matching hunter orange beret to accompany them during deer season.
Obviously, these are not hard-and-fast rules. For every woman reacts to the gift of a shed antler differently.
Some tear up. Some remain speechless. Others visit their mother or sister for several weeks – presumably so they can lord it over them.
My own special someone opted for speechless.
I’m not sure if that was because I told her that if I could, I’d give her moose antlers (provided they were under 20 inches and not too broadly palmated) or whether it was because of the words I chose to accompany the gift.
I said, “If you think this is special, you should see what I’ve got in store for you on the fifth anniversary of my biggest brook trout.”