Okay, I can understand how it's possible to dedicate an entire shop to birthdays. They're hard to avoid, often expensive, and regularly addressed in the sort of last-minute rush - at least, they are when I'm responding to them. I can't understand, however, how it's possible that it's possible to fill said shop with shitty, shitty cards and a load of emotionally void, officially-licensed crap barely fit for giving to a disliked co-worker. I can't think of anything more likely to detract from your anniversary enjoyment than the knowledge that your pastel-shade, mawkish card and "comedy" T-shirt clad toy monkey came from such a barren place.
My quest having lead me to the exponentially superior but still disappointing shelves of WH Smith hy are there no funny cards any more? The On-The-Ceiling stuff was funny when it first came out which was oh, five years ago. Now it's tired and old and everybody's seen it, a status that its callow pretenders - poorly-Photoshopped animal photos and unfunny digs at knitwear catalogues - achieved almost immediately. I'm sick and tired of those bloody penguins, too. Can't the designers just admit that once everybody's seen your witticism it's time to get a new one, or are they forbidden by the goons of the Hallmark Cartel?