03 January 2011

"Oh, I don't want a lot for Christmas" --Mariah Carey


For the holidays, Hubby received a book he didn't want. Luckily, the gift receipt was pressed between the pages of the book. As there were plenty of books he did want, he high-tailed it over to the book-selling chain to return the book. The cashier took one look at the book and gift receipt and apologized that she could not honor the return. The receipt, and the book, were two years old. Shocked, he looked more closely at the receipt. Sure enough, it was dated 2008!

It put me in mind of another awkward but true gift situation: Years ago, a girlfriend gave me a cheese board. It was one of those boards with a wire cutter device to neatly slice the cheese. It looked something like this: I opened the present and was delighted. I love cheese and all cheese-related gewgaws. Here my friend was, inviting me to cut the cheese in new and exciting ways! Then, I pulled the board out of the generic looking box and lifted the wire to check out the cutting motion. There were bits of cheese on the wire. Cheddar, by the looks of it. After an awkward pause, girlfriend said "I tried it out to make sure it worked."

Um, yeah. Or you bought it at a yard sale and didn't bother to check if it was clean.

Now, I've re-gifted but I hope I've never hit these kinds of lows.

Questions du jour: Ever receive an OBVIOUS re-gift? Is re-gifting a smart thing or a tacky thing?

15 comments:

Bilbo said...

We have a closet full of well-intended, but mostly useless and often ugly gifts we can't bring ourselves to throw away. We don't re-gift them, because we would surely give them back to the individual who gave them to us in the first place, which would result in significant embarassment. We would be happy to give them to you so that you can re-gift them...

Mike said...

My wife takes stuff to white elephant parties where you never know what your going to get in return. She just got back something she took last year.

freckledk said...

My mother put gifts we'd given her last year into each of our Christmas stockings, quite unapologetically, in fact. This made it far easier to tell her I didn't like the costume jewelry she'd purchased for me, and that she should keep it for herself.

Lemon Gloria said...

In the cheese cutter situation, the unfortunate part is that it was dirty. I mean, who cares where she got it, even if it was a yard sale - it was the kind of thing she knew you'd like. But oops on the cheese stuck to it!

Alice said...

HAAAA to the cheese cutter! that's awful and HILARIOUS. i often MEAN to regift things, but am too lazy, and they just sit unused in a drawer instead.

Narm said...

Herpes.

magnolia said...

i will regift unopened bottles of wine that are well-intentioned attempts to make me happy. i was also a champion re-gifter of things my ex-husband's family gave me for christmas. these people obviously never once took the time to get to know me, because it was a festival of "yeah, no" every time a box was given. wrong size (extra-small when i was a size 14? that's just a jerk move), wrong color, and things that i hate and they like given to me as "we liked it - so will you!" gifts.

but i never used those things. an unclean used cheese cutter? ew.

Drama Queen said...

A two-year old book? That's too funny! And I don't think I've ever received a re-gift, but my Mom has the WORST taste in gifts. This year she gave me a thingie that I didn't even know what it was. She said, "It goes with the thingie I gave you last year." Oh, that helps, Mom.

The Maiden Metallurgist said...

Oh man that's bad.

Cyndy said...

I like the idea of regifting but the stuff I've gotten that I didn't want or like was all stuff that I wouldn't want to give anyone else either. So it sits there taking up space for a few years and then it goes away.

Brutalism said...

No problem at all with (unused) regifts (either giving or receiving). Gak on the cheese cutter.

Pauline said...

I've received a few re-gifts. If it's tacky or smart, depends on the item and its condition. Obviously anything with cheese stuck to it is out! :P

WashingTina said...

My dad's side of the family is so large that we all get together significantly after Christmas to celebrate together. In recent years, we've started doing a white elephant gift exchange with the sole purpose of regifting. Everyone brings their hideous junk and we swap it around as is the way with white elephants. It's hilarious, and no harm is done, since everyone knows that everything is junk. As they say...one man's trash is another man's treasure. (Cheese, on the other hand, is not...)

lacochran's evil twin said...

Bilbo: Sounds like a Blogger re-gift swap meet is in order. Get on that...

Mike: Ha!

freckledk: Wow. Does she have Alzheimer's?

Lemon Gloria: Indeed. Her intentions were clearly good.

Alice: You could make it part of your charity initiative--give some of it away to Vietnam Vets, for example. They'll come and pick it up!

Narm: You're going to have to give the missus a whole LOT of jewelry to make up for that.

magnolia: That IS a jerk move. Good riddance to the ex'es.

Drama Queen: Ha! Maybe she doesn't know either?

The Maiden Metallurgist: What is bad in life is good in blog, yes? (Why am I talking like Boris Badenoff?)

Cyndy: Gift elves?

Brutalism: Gak, indeed. Thanks for weighing in.

Pauline: Makes for a pretty cheesy gift, right? *groan*

WashingTina: I guess that works, provided none of the gifts are FROM those people. :)

Felisa said...

I regifted for the first time this year! I think I did it with good intentions though. My cousin brought over her roommate (who just moved to Seattle) to our family Christmas party... And it was the day we were going to open our Christmas gifts to each other. My sister and I felt horrible so we threw a bunch of newly gifted socks and some scented candles and candy in a bag so she would have something to open!