Update: Reader imajoebob has got a really funny response in the comments. Worth a read.
Trying to write this post on a Blackberry has taught me something, this thing’s web browser stinks. Now that the 3G iPhones will be on-sale in July, I’m gonna hafta break-down and get one. That said, only one-question remains: How to hide the purchase from my wife?
After the break, we’ll talk through my strategy, in the hopes that a fellow husband in a similar pickle might benefit from my experience, or maybe even able to help me devise a better strategy.
No it isn’t. Repeat: No – it – is – not. “Missus Mac” is exactly the sort of black-hearted siren that’d march me back into the Apple store at Southlake and make me return it. The manager, Dave, would probably have pity on me, but the rest of them, especially those so-called geniuses, would be looking down on me like the looser I am.
Alternate Strategy: “Honesty” –œ Sell my old phone, buy the new one, totally above board.
Yeah, I could do that. This technique works real well for purchases that she’ll totally notice like a TV or new car or something. It even works pretty good when merged with the “Beg for forgiveness” approach, played something like this:
Leigh: “Oh yeah, Costco had the new one on sale for less than we paid for the old one, and I sold the old one to some guy for almost as much as we paid for it.“
The Wife is so used to these kinds of shenanigans, she just turns off the accountant side of her brain and utterly fails to ask probing questions about dollars and such, knowing instinctively that nothing I could say next would make her happy. She is right.
But, really… That sounds like a whole lot of work for just a new phone.
Final Strategy: “Buy it, and Hide it”
This strategy is a good one, very useful for small-ish purchases you want to slip under the radar. It however leaves essentially 2 problems to solve:
How to hide the New Handset
Now my wife could run a CSI unit dedicated to snooping out evidence of illicit purchases. She has learned that new toys come with new accessories, boxes and manuals and I am exactly the kind’a fella that likes to read the directions. I’ll hafta forego that –œstuffing the manuals in the bottom of a desk drawer to be read late some evening when she thinks I’m surfing porn.
The good news is that my wife is not really into technology, so much so that I could walk around talking into my shoe and she wouldn’t notice, so the appearance of a new handset replacing my trusty Blackberry is liable to coast right by her.
How to Hide the Transaction
Some fella’s worry about their wives abusing their credit cards. Conversely my wife lives in mortal fear of Macworld, WWDC, or even Costco coupons. She makes sure I don’t get away with anything. She is like an Indian tracker on my paper trail –and that ain’t easy, I travel an average of 2 trips a week. There’s a whole lot of perfectly legitimate business purchases on those cards. Nevertheless, she sticks her ear to the railroad tracks or whatever and can tell a $400 business dinner from a new phone purchase without hardly even looking at the bill.
Now some husbands get their own credit cards –a trick I tried. Yet with wanton disregard for federal law and postal regulations she just opens the bills anyway. So the credit cards are out.
The trick here is that I just have to go old school. Cash baby. See the wife doesn’t monitor the checking account. She knows I’d rather barter with chickens than try and pay for something with a check.
But the Apple store does not accept cash for iPhones.
And then a thought strikes me: The ATM card. If I could pay for the phone with the ATM card, and use my credit card to secure service, we’d have the perfect stealth purchase.
Now comes the hard part: waiting until July.