Anyone can give mom a new toaster oven for Mother's Day. Only an inventive son or daughter would think of giving her a new face.
"We had someone give their mother bletharoplasty for Mother's Day recently," said Carol Grisanti at Dr. Arthur Grisanti's cosmetic surgery office in Burbank. "Bletharoplasty . . . --that would be the upper and lower eyelids."
Plastic surgery is just one eye-opening alternative for this weekend's annual tribute to matriarchy. A number of unusual Mother's Day gifts can be found in and around the San Fernando Valley.
After all, the list of traditional presents is all too predictable. Flowers. Candy. Breakfast in bed. A new robe. Nothing wrong with such displays of affection. But enterprising offspring can surprise mom with, say, a nifty power tool or a front-row seat at the truck races.
Intimate apparel is perhaps the best-known of the least-known gifts. Lingerie stores say Mother's Day is their busiest day of the year besides Christmas. Consider a special teddy for the occasion.
"It's not racy," said Lynn Stegen, owner of the Booby Trap in Encino. "It's provocative."
Before you shop for bustiers , though, you might have mom drop by the plastic surgeon's office. Bletharoplasty, liposuction, breast enlargement . . . there are a number of procedures from which to choose. It's a pricey gift--even the simplest cosmetic surgery can run $3,000--but with a snip here and tuck there, you've got a whole new parent.
And for those with a different type of renovation in mind, Neiman-Reed's Lumber City in West Hills is offering a Mother's Day Special. Buy mom a hammer or a circular saw and they'll gift-wrap it free.
Such specials abound this weekend. Sporting types can take mom to the Big A in Anaheim to see Sunday's game between the Angels and the New York Yankees. Each woman entering the stadium will receive an apron. Or escort mother to the race track for an afternoon of wagering-- everyone stepping through the turnstiles gets a packet of hair-care products.
Gifts for Everybody
"Even if you're a father, you can have one," said a Hollywood Park spokeswoman.
Imagine thousands of unshaven, cigar-chomping men shuffling toward the betting windows with tubes of styling gel in hand.
But if the kids are coming along, you might prefer another setting. Try Magic Mountain. The amusement park near Valencia isn't offering any discounts or gifts, but it will have truck races.
"Monster Truck Madness," said a park official. "You may not consider that being targeted for mothers, but it's a nice family environment."
And even if the youngsters aren't invited, you might prefer to stay home.
"It's a lot nicer to get something for mom to use with dad in those few moments they have alone," said Kimberly Hartwig, manager of the Love Boutique. "We have lotions and adult toys and all kinds of books."
More Somber Presents
Not all Mother's Day gifts must deal with fun and frivolity. At Pierce Brothers Valley Oaks Memorial Park in Westlake Village, the occasional serious son or daughter will bring their matriarch to select a plot.
"Christmas and Mother's Day," said Ed Smith, sales director at the cemetery. "It's usually a mutual idea. It's not a surprise gift."
According to the Encyclopedia Americana, the idea for Mother's Day is generally credited to Anna M. Jarvis, who began honoring her deceased mother in 1905. Jarvis encouraged other sons and daughters to participate in the yearly celebration. She wrote thousands of letters to influential people until, in 1913, Congress voted to recognize the second Sunday in May as a national maternal holiday.
Little did Jarvis, or Congress, know that their innovation would someday become a boon for the striptease industry. For on Mother's Day, "strip-a-gram" businesses find themselves with a whole new clientele.
At an arranged time and place, a muscular man will take it off in front of mother while singing words of adoration. You can choose from several characters to perform this task, including "the policeman," "Santa" and the "stripping Cupid."
"It's hilarious," said Keith Gondocs, manager of Strip-A-Gram. "It's an original thing to send mom."
Anyone can give a toaster oven.