Guest Post: 7 Reasons To Abandon Gift Giving
With Christmas less than four weeks away, how about a story that evokes the true spirit of the season? Yes, we thought you’d like that. To get such a story, though, the 7 Reasons sofa is heading back to the good old US of A. That’s because the man behind such a story is Rich Rossi. Now Rich strives to practice non-violence in all he does, and advocates that others do the same unless confronted by anyone handing out pamphlets. He goes on long fasts, partially as a means of self-purification and social protest. But mostly because he needs to lose a few pounds before speedo season. Check out his children’s book entitled The 12 Days of Christmas in New Jersey, on sale at Costco this holiday season or visit him at his SU sports and music blog. Before you do any of that, though, read his 7 Reasons guest post.
It was Christmas morning and my new bride and I were celebrating our first Christmas together. We were on a tight budget so we each promised to
keep our spending limit at $10.
There it was, placed carefully under the tree and wrapped in newspaper, with a little tag that said,”To my husband, with love”. Waiting for my wife to awake, I stared at the gift in anticipation, not unlike I would have when I was a child.
What could it be?
When the time came to open our gifts, the anxiety was killing me. I threw off the newspaper wrapping only to find….a rubber chicken.
Nothin’ says loving’ like a rubber chicken.
Trying to laugh and take it all in stride, I playfully threw it at her. It made a hollow “thump” as it bounced off her and hit the ground. The damn thing wasn’t even rubber. It was plastic.
Lesson Number One: Save your rubber chicken receipts.
Several days later I brought my faux rubber chicken back to the fine establishment from which it was purchased. I confronted the shopkeeper with my receipt and asked for a refund.
“And the reason for your return?” he asked. “This is not a rubber chicken. The wrapper clearly states that it’s a rubber chicken and it’s not. It’s plastic.”
“Well, we tried to get rubber chickens. I called my supplier, the biggest novelty company on the east coast. What with the holidays, there was a run on rubber chickens. You just can’t find ‘em.”
A run on rubber chickens? Really?
I still have the plastic chicken today as a memento from our first Christmas, but it hasn’t stopped me from being on both the giving and receiving end of additional mistakes. Here’s a list of seven dreadful holiday gifts I’ve received in the past and seven reasons to abandon the gift giving ritual all together:
1. Yes. It’s Rubber Chickens.
2. Fake Lottery Tickets. Mom has bucks. Fairly well off, one would assume she’d be a bit generous around Christmas, especially knowing that I’m going to inherit it all when she dies anyway. I’m a patient man, though.
Imagine my surprise when I opened up a gift from her, a winning Powerball ticket, only to be told that it was a just a joke. Well, aren’t we funny?
Looks like I’ll have to kill her after all.
3. Vintage Literature. What’s the biggest selling book of all time outside of the Bible? It’s Andrew Carnegie’s How To Make Friends and Influence People. I found an early pressing in a used books store and, knowing that my brother-in-law was a big history buff, I thought he’d appreciate it. He didn’t take it quite the right way. That was 15 years ago. I’m still waiting for my “Thank you”.
4. Chainsaw. I live in the city. What on God’s pavement covered earth am I going to do with a chainsaw? Besides, with my luck I’ll either put somebody’s eye out with it or accidentally lop my arm off, making my attempt to hail a cab and return the damn thing virtually impossible.
5. Logo Ornament. One year a client sent me a Christmas ornament with his logo on it. And the cheap SOB probably sent it only because he could write it off as an expense on his taxes. How quaint. How novel. This is the worst Christmas gift. EVER.
6. Chia Pet Lamp. Yes, you read that correctly. In a tribute to bad taste, a neighbor took a Chia-Pet and, through some “expert” handiwork, turned it into a furry, green table lamp. Imagine my surprise when I opened that little contribution to the trailer park decor hall of fame.
7. A Real Pet. I don’t like animals so what does my uncle get me for Christmas? A dog. A trip to the vet and $2000 later I’m saddled with a canine Ironsides I’ve got to feed and clean up after for the rest of his life. Maybe if my neighbor still has his tools handy….
Now you know what NOT to buy. If it’s good gift ideas you want, I’m afraid you’re in the wrong place. You’ll need to do your Christmas shopping on your own.
Just one last word of advice…
When you see rubber chickens in the window, keep walking.