We're coming off a pretty depressing month of November, so I thought I'd kick-start the holiday season with a few early reflections about gifts: Gifts given, gifts received. The Good, the Bad, and the Butt-ugly.
When it comes to worst-ever gifts, it's not the gift per se that counts. If you get a hideous Rudolf the Reindeer sweater from your Aunt Minnie, at least you know she meant well. (Unless she's like some of the Minnie-hahas around my tree).
The worst gifts are ones you know were chosen with malice aforethought; they reflect--badly--on you, or on the relationship between giver and givee.
Here, in no particular order, is my own Top 5 list of worst-ever gifts:
- A set of Franklin Mint quarters, given to me by a buddy who kept borrowing money.
- A refrigerator alarm that oinked, the year I put on a few holiday pounds.
- A paper shredder, right after I announced my plan to become a professional writer. (I already had an organic paper shredder--my cat).
- A set of candles that was regifted to me, from the person I'd given it to the previous year.
- Any of the "For Dummies" books I've ever received. (And I hate to admit, there've been more than a few.)
- A Christmas card I regifted in the first grade. It had the original recipient's name erased, but still clearly legible.(I was only six, okay?)
- An Epilady hair remover, for a hirsute friend.
- A jumbo box of See's Candy, for someone who was on a diet.
- A set of carving knives, for a soon-to-be ex.
Looking over that list, I'm...I'm ashamed. And I solemnly vow not to leave any passive-aggressive lumps of coal in any one's stocking this year.
So what are some of your worst-ever gifts given? Received?