The day Megan proved four of you wrong.

On Friday, I explained Megan’s Surprise Dilemma, a gambit wherein Megan had the option to unravel various surprises.

As a bonus, I included a poll to predict both Megan’s reaction and Jason’s plans. Only five people voted (despite >30 reading the article) but there were still interesting “trends.” (Can you say “trend” of a tiny sample size?)

  • Nobody voted either “surprise” was a lie. Everyone expected both surprises to exist.
  • Four readers predicted that Megan would not want to know and would abstain from checking the laptop bag.
  • One reader predicted that Megan would check, deliberating spoiling both surprises.

Neither Megan nor I voted.

I made one amendment to Friday’s rules:

I hid the laptop bag. Megan’s only clue was that it was somewhere in the house. We normally chat quite liberally on Fridays, but I didn’t hear from her for several hours. Eventually, she found the bag (in her office) and came to visit (in my office) as she rummaged. She soon located her gift, then prompted me to explain her anniversary surprise.

I did. That was the agreement.

You might wonder why, if I intended these as surprises, I even gave Megan the option to discover them, or why I ever hinted at them. Doesn’t that give most of the surprise away?

Sure it does. I did it to get to know my wife better. To pit her desire to be surprised against her desire to be involved. You can’t just ask someone whether they like surprise parties. They may claim to, thinking you’ve planned one.

If you take nothing from my website, remember this:

Someone’s answer is never as accurate as her actions.

Megan’s actions were crystal clear. She prefers involvement. Sweet husbandly gestures to Megan should come in the form of, “I’d like to X for you, what do you think?” They’re usually greeting with Squee, but that doesn’t mean she’d prefer to find out later. You can give her a wrapped gift, but she’ll ask permission to open it immediately. You will respect your wishes. Will you respect hers?

This is not the last time I will surprise Megan. I recently took her to the rereleased theatrical Ghostbusters, but she guessed our destination long before I bought tickets. That’s part of the trouble. Megan knows me so well that keeping secrets is hell. In a way, telling her about our anniversary is a relief.

You probably want to know what was in the laptop bag; very well. A gift certificate for us to dine or see a movie. It’s a modest amount, but enough to cover our tastes for an evening out.

You probably want to know what the anniversary surprise was, too.

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