Last week, hubby and I spent a whole day doing "spring" cleaning at home. We move and cleaned behind furniture (yes, even though you can't see them, the dust mites are lurking, people). We cleaned windows. We changed curtains. And, we got rid of LOADS of stuff.
Now, some of you may know that the hubby and I like to keep our surroundings tidy. OK, OK, it's more like we have OCD. I admit it. Are you happy, now?
Anyway, all of this cleaning and purging of "stuff" has lead me to believe that a blog about good gift giving is in order. Because, basically, all of the shit that we got rid of is crap that people gave us. Now, I would like to begin by apologizing if I am indeed portraying myself as an ungrateful gift recipient. I am not. Really.
However DUDES, some of the gifts that people give me/you/us are just plain WRETCHED. I mean, c'mon!! I know that you know of whence I speak (where did I get "whence" from, I am not William Shakespeare?).
Anyhow, we have all gotten crappy gifts and have felt obligated to keep them. So, we display them for awhile to appease the gift giver then, we shove them in the basement/closet/attic and shake our heads in disbelief every time we run across them pondering, "What the hell was (fill in the blank) thinking when she/he gave me that nasty thing?"
So, let me share with you what I think are GOOD gifts to give and receive and the reasons why. And, I am a good gift giver, people. So, heed my advice and your friends won't be talking about you and your "lame" presents behind your back:
1. Cash: Don't believe that it's impersonal. One size fits all and the recipient will think of you when they spend it on something they love.
2. Gift Cards: Who doesn't love a free meal, movie, or trip to the coffee shop? Nuff said.
3. A Nice Bottle of Wine: You can enjoy it with your significant other, your friends, or if your not a drinker, you can regift it. Now, remember, NO SCREW CAPS PLEASE. No one wants to wash their cheese down with wine that tastes like dirty dish water (not that I would know what that tastes like).
4. Food: This includes: chocolate, pastries, fruit baskets, nuts, candy, etc...But, does not include Christmas fruit cake. Yuck. If, as in the case of fruitcake, it can be used to bang nails, as a doorstop, or to maim people, don't present it as a gift. The recipient will probably wretch at the thought of eating it and then just hock it into the woods (yes, I did).
5. Scented Candle: Generally speaking, most people like candles. If it smells good to you, your gift recipient will probably like it, too. Again, use your judgement (assuming it is good judgement). If you're unsure about a scent, ask the saleslady, your husband (or wife), and/or a friend to confirm that your candle choice doesn't smell like cat urine.
Bad Gifts: (from my own private collection)
1. Wall Hangings: I am sorry. But, to the person who game me this ridiculous housewarming gift, what in the frick were you thinking and what am I supposed to do with these ginormous lame-ass glasses? Hello? Anybody?? I mean, I don't have a friggin eyeball fetish. And, I am not an optometrist. So, what else can I say but, WHAT THE HELL?
2. Nick Knacks: OK. I just can't control myself here so I'm gonna rat out this gift giver. It's from my sister. I don't know where I'm supposed to put this spork-handed wooden woman with her mammalian protuberances hanging to her waist. But, I do know where I'd LIKE TO PUT HER, BIG SISTER!! Is this supposed to remind me of where my boobs are going to end up in twenty years?
3. Clothes: Clothing is a very personal gift. Unless you KNOW the person that you are buying it for REALLY WELL, please refrain from purchasing clothing as gifts. You see, as in my case, I have what you would refer to as an "ample bosom." So, when you take a woman with an "ample bosom" and dress her in a furry collared leopard print sweater, she will look like a hooker. I do not like looking like a hooker. Therefore, I do not appreciate animal prints. So, save your money and save my reputation and give me cash. Thank. You. Very. Much.
4. Pictures Of Your Kids: I know, I know. You think they are adorable and you want to share them with the world. However, we don't know them from Jack and we barely know you and now we are going to feel guilty filing the Christmas card with little Billy Bob's and little Mary Sue's picture on it in the recycle bin. Do us a favor. Don't do that anymore. Send pictures of your little sweeties to family and friends only. Then, when we open the mail, we won't have to ask the rest of the household, "Does anyone know who the hell is this?"
5. Cheap Aromatherapy: There is nothing more relaxing than a nice, long bath. However, when you take a bath using those cheap-ass bath salts that your Aunt Millie gave you (God rest her soul) and you have to go the doctor because you have second degree burns on your "pippy" area, the relaxing experience is shot to shit. Don't be a cheap bastard. Do not buy bath salts, gels, soaps, or lotions on clearance unless you are using them on yourself (and good luck to ya). Women are "delicate." And they don't particularly enjoy feeling like they are peeing razor blades. Ouch.
Live it, learn it, people.
Live it. Learn it.