Syndicated columnist Amy Dickenson of the Chicago Tribune appears in my local paper, and last month set up a Twitter account called “santahatesme“. She encouraged readers to write in with the worst gifts they have ever gotten – and despite the ‘Santa’ label, she was looking for ANY gift, from birthdays to anniversaries and so on. There were some amazingly bad gifts noted on the list, and between that list and a couple of gifts WE got this year, I was inspired to ask the Gear Diary team to share their own personal ‘worst gift ever’.
Mike – Generally I really don’t care much about gifts as I’m truly a ’it’s the thought’ person … but this year was too good to be true! My parents believe in the ‘tell us what to buy, with links if possible, and we’ll buy it’ method, and while we still do stuff for our kids with them, we decided we weren’t playing that game for ourselves anymore, and told them so a few years back. The last couple years we got gift cards. This year they came to visit in mid-December, and we got a box of Joe-Joes from Trader Joes. We gave them a very nice gift, and apparently they felt guilty because we also got homemade jam and pound cake on the last day of their visit … in a bag with someone else’s name! Then my mom chased my wife around trying to write her a check …
On top of that, my wife’s mother has typically sent a check that we didn’t cash – and one each to the kids that we divided between clothes and toys. So this year she sent the kids their checks … but sent us two different gifts. The first thing was a case of apple wine – and my wife (her daughter!) is terribly allergic to apples! The other one was a holiday centerpiece that was very pretty … but contained live pine needles. We haven’t had a real tree for years due to severe allergies of my wife and younger son, who had a quick reaction and we had to get rid of the whole thing quickly.
Amy – The worst gift I ever got was a electric toothbrush for my 16th birthday from my grandparents. It turns out they had forgotten it was my birthday, odd since its always around Thanksgiving. I spent the entire day listening to how great my cousins were. The electric toothbrush was the guilt gift when they found out they had forgotten. My parents did do their best to make up for it that year. And when my 21st b-day rolled around, my grandparents got me diamond earrings. I have long since forgiven them.
Judie – I hate calling out a giver for any of the worst gifts I’ve ever received, because with my luck they would read this and get their feelings hurt. But some gifts do deserve mention … Like the time my ex-mother-in-law came to visit and thought it odd that I didn’t have a seat in my stand-up shower. I had never seen the need for one, and so I dismissed it as a different-strokes thing. When Christmas rolled around, she gave me a huge metal and plastic bath seat (like they use in hospitals or nursing homes!) which she meant for me to put inside the shower. Needless to say, that item was later regifted to someone who could actually use it. Then there was the Christmas gift my daughter Sarah got one year from her uncle: a three pack of colored Scotch Tape. It looked like it had been hoisted from the supply closet at his work place, and I’ll never forget the look on Sarah’s face when she opened it. Priceless.
So what about YOU – what is the worst gift you have ever received? Add your thoughts in the comments!
Source: SantaHatesMe on Twitter