Worst Gifts

What's the worst gift you've ever received? And also, what did you do with it?

I used to feel really guilty about getting rid of gifts that I didn't like. I don't really, anymore. Maybe that's why people don't give me as much these days! Who knows?

I'm not sure who all actually reads this blog, so I hesitate to actually mention what the worst gifts I've ever received were. Let me just say that a bad gift is one that:

a. is incredibly unsuited to my belief system
b. is incredibly unsuited to my personal style, or
c. is completely and utterly worthless.

I'm sure I have, myself, given my share of these.

We have a tradition of gag gifts in my family, and I remember one year, Aunt Donna (rest her soul- I hate writing that, but she's gone) gave me her old wallet. I'm talking a really old wallet. I didn't know it was a gag, and I did my best to pretend to like it. She, of course, laughed at me for an hour or so. "The look on your face!" she said.

Also, (just to share some family peculiarities,) for a while, there was a pair of old men's shoes going around as a gag gift. And I think- those who know, correct me if I'm wrong- I think someone spray painted them silver one year, and gave them to Duncle Ennis, and he liked them! He wore them. Duncle Ennis, in turn, gave everyone a box of candy corn one year for Christmas, the kind that has "a prize in each box". Another year, he gave us each a Debbie Gibson single (in the days of vinyl records), got out a golf ball, and suggested we all play golf with him (the large holes in the middle of the records were supposed to be the golf holes). And I think there was one year he gave kazoos. And one year, quite mysteriously, he actually gave me a hundred dollar bill. I felt it to make sure it wasn't counterfeit. I rather miss Christmas with Duncle Ennis.

That's not what I'm talking about, though. I'm talking about things you really, really don't know what to say about. How do you deal with such calamities?


  1. My grandmother gave us cousins these really ugly giant toy dogs, that looked very frightening.

    Another year - a beautiful, but somewhat offensive gift - my mother bought me leather gloves. Sadly I'm vegetarian, so the meat mittens were returned to the store.

  2. When I was 20, my father "surprised" me with tickets to the Mellow Yellow 500 Nascar race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway. My brother and I went because we were trying very hard to maintain a relationship with our father. We had seats behind this disgusting, fat, cigar smoking redneck. I barely remember it because I know I have tried to block this out of my memory. On my blog, I don't really want to offend anyone too much, but I know you've been smart enough to read between the lines. This gift certainly meets all three of your requirements and then some. Needless to say, that was the last time we saw Dear Ol' Pops.

    This takes the cake, but I have gotten hideous earrings from one boyfriend and cleaning products from one guy who I had been out with a couple times who insisted on buying me something for my birthday. Yeah.

  3. I think the best was when someone, I forget who, gave Uncle Dick a Barry White album. Uncle Dick was a great jazz fan. He tried to be gracious about it, but he wasn't about to actually play the record.

  4. Jonathan's Aunt gave us a homemade "casserole cozy." It is this quilted contraption for carrying casseroles around. We didn't know what it was. He had to ask his Grandmother. It was a very sweet thought, but as you well know I wouldn't know a casserole if I was hit in the face with one. It sits in the cupboard waiting for the day I finally bring a homemade dish to someone's house. It is going to keep waiting.

  5. A friend of mine gave me these HUGE mugs with 3-D Christmas scenes on them. I had nowhere to put them, they were hand wash only and they were beyond ugly. That friend and I had a falling out over something else, and before I moved last time, I gave the mugs to Goodwill.

    Love the Debbie Gibson video...talk about a flashback! I have this sudden urge to put my hair up in a sideways pony tail, wear big plastic earrings and striped eye shadow! ;)