Below are the 5 worst holiday gifts I’ve ever given or received. Word of advice; cover your eyes:
1. The Sweatshirt.
Never let it be said that there are meaningless gifts. This was an Atlanta Braves sweatshirt, wrapped up all beautiful with a big bow, given to me by a boyfriend when I thought an engagement ring was in the offing. This gift gave a message loud and clear. The message was, “I bought this as an afterthought in a food court on my lunch break, and you were expecting a ring?” Needless to say the relationship did not last.
2. The Vintage Bowling Ball.
I actually did not give or receive this gift. I just heard about it from the guy I was dating, who said his last girlfriend gave it to him for Christmas. “I hated it,” he told me. This freaked me out because, personally, I think a vintage bowling ball would be the awesomest gift ever! I have since bought, like, five of them for myself. Anyway, it shook me up so much that he would have hated to receive something I would have loved to receive that I completely choked and bought him, like, one of those genero, testostero Brookstone alarm clocks or something that year. Needless to say the relationship did not last.
3. The Invisible Package
A certain family member swears that each year for the last four years in a row I was sent a package full of wonderful gifts that “must have gotten lost in the mail.” I don’t even care about not receiving any gifts from this person. I just wish I could hear a more inventive excuse.
4. The Blowfish Lamp
I received this from my mother when I was 18, because she was with me at the thrift store where we discovered it, and she heard me say, “Wow, I can’t think of anything more fabulous than this,” but somehow she missed the dump-load of sarcasm that went with the words. It was all stiff and shiny and shallacky, and still smelled like dried-up dead sea life. The funny thing is that the thrift store where we found it was located in Honolulu. We were there on vacation. My mother had to lug that thing all the way home and hole it up for six months before giving it to me. These days I really wish I still had it, though.
5. Sarah Palin’s Book, Going Rogue
For me, political autobiographies hold less appeal than do-it-yourself eye surgery. That said, I’m sure my sister got me this book because we walked by a bookstore where it was on display or something, and I said, “Wow, can’t wait to read that,” and she heard the words without the dumpload of sarcasm to go with them. There is a lesson here, and that is that I should shut my sarcastic trap. Because now I have this book on my shelf with the rest of my real collection, which includes my own highly-acclaimed yet profanity laced books. It sticks out like a narc at a biker rally, scaring the parents of my daughter’s playdates and such. Serves me right.
with Hollis Gillespie
Dec. 12, 11-5 p.m.
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