Fa la la la la!

Some people like doing gift exchanges. I can see how it would be fun. You can search for something for someone, wrap it up and send it off. Then, not only does that person receive your well thought out surprise, but you received your own little box full of treasures.

I don't do this. It is nothing against anyone, it's just that me, getting a gift together, packaging it, and sending it is too much. I didn't even get it together for my best friend. Her birthday gift was sent a month late. I know it's terrible, and it seems to get worse each year. This is why I opt out of gift exchanges. It really is me and not you.

There was a secret santa thing at one of my old jobs. I gave truffles and cookies from Trader Joe's and in the confusion, the gifts got split up. They were not very popular anyway, but this was not the worst gift. I received some kind of glass oil lamp/pipe-bong looking thing, and lots of laughter when I opened it in front of the entire division. It "accidentally" got left behind in the ladies room.

On one of the message boards I visit, they used to do these every year. One year I didn't get a gift. One year I was unemployed and really should have skipped it because I was scrambling. One year someone started a "What do you want," and it turned into someone's rant on what they didn't want. She went by a name of a pretty big basketball player. One that did a forgotten genie movie? One that hates Kobe Bryant? Anyway, after one person got the idea to maybe do videos (do you see how these things start small and turn into a project?) this person went on and on about how she didn't want to see a video of you, your kids or your pets because she wasn't interested and had no need for that and so on. How jolly.

Then, a few years ago, someone mentioned the holiday exchange. And I was one of the first to suggest skipping it, and from there it seemed like everyone was relieved to not go through it. From then on, we lived grinchily ever after.


Micki said...

Ha! You forgot the person that has everything that cried when she didn't get what she wanted. LOL!

Adam said...

Last year, my sister's husband lost his job and my other sister was mid divorce. I had gotten back from Iraq in early November and they approached me timidly to ask if it was OK we didn't do presents this year because they couldn't afford it. I said sure (relieved to not have to manically shop) and we got together for Christmas. My mom and I spent 15 dollars (our self imposed max) and bought all the red plaid flannel, faux fir trimmed items and green plaid flannel we could at a local thrift store and made hand sewn stockings for everyone at home. We spent another ten dollars on things like gum and chapstick and those were our only presents.

You know...Christmas morning was amazing. No stress, no drama, no rushing...just coffee, snow, my sisters and I (me?) It was so amazing, we don't do presents anymore. It's healthier, I think, and far less stressful. I'm not one of those "Jesus is the Reason" type people, but damned if I'm now not one of those "less materialism, more Christmas spirit" types because seriously...no presents was the best decision we ever made.

OK. Sorry about a blog-post-as-comment. That wasn't the intent.

-GRC said...

LO, Micki, I must have blocked it. I would ask, but...I am paranoid the guilty party might read this (you know, out of the 3 people that read this blog, probably not, but with my luck it would happen).

Adam, I'm glad it turned out well and it's cool that everyone agreed to it too. I have a wish list but I really don't need anything. Some places here (D.C. area) put up Christmas decorations right after Veterans Day. The push towards (buying things for) Christmas is ridiculous and people forget that it's not about the gift grab. There is so much pressure to be festive starting the day after Thanksgiving. I'm not religious, but I like the spirit of the holiday and some of the fun that comes with it, but I don't really feel into it until a few days out from the day.

Micki said...

Ha! I feel ya. I'm feeling a bit paranoid responding to this and linking to my blog (where I have 33 subscribers *popping my collar*).

But yes there was someone that cried. I can see her point 'cause the gift was pretty bad. I hope nobody cried when they got my gifts *looking around nervously*).