In the Doghouse: Gifts for Your Wife

I love girls, and I love movies. As with other fancies of mine (bikes and boomboxes, Life cereal and pancakes, whiskey and beer), I nurture my own hedonism by enjoying my favourite things in tandem. Nothing beats a prime seat in a perilously over-air-conditioned theater with a box of candy in one hand and your sweetheart’s soft palm in the other. Movies are the meat and potatoes of modern courtship, but as any chef can tell you, there’s more to a recipe than the ingredients…

My parents got engaged on a carriage ride through New York’s Central Park . If you ask my Dad, he’ll tell you about the weather that day, what my Mom was wearing, and the conversation they had leading up to his proposal. My Mom’s version of the story corroborates his, but with an unusual prelude. Before their ride around the park, my Dad took her our to see Paul Scofield star in the film A Man For All Seasons, which ends with the brutal decapitation of Scofield’s character, Sir Thomas More. My Mom is a tough cookie, and their relationship was already sturdy enough that the violence wasn’t off-putting, but to this day she teases my Dad about his selection and urges me not to make the same mistake with my own love interests.

So what makes a good date movie? Comedy and romance are the standards, but anything light-hearted and entertaining will do. I have a few gems that live at the bottom of my bookshelf – the VHS equivalents of Barry White’s greatest hits. I’ve seen them all 20 times or more, but I never get tired of them, especially because of how effective they are. I can’t divulge my secrets lest they become played out, but steer clear of sci-fi and horror and I’m sure you’ll do fine.