This morning, while I tuned in to the Panther and the Lion having a minor domestic dispute about gifts, I thought back to some of the really bizarre, inappropriate and downright thoughtless gifts I’ve received from Significant Others (hereinafter referred to as SOs).
Not to sound ungrateful or anything, but gift-giving is a real art in which not many are accomplished. To give a really good gift, you have to be totally selfless during the whole gift choosing, purchasing/making/organizing process. You have to have been paying attention to everything that’s been in your SO’s heart and mind in the preceding months or even years. You really have to know what would delight them, not what you think they might like or (worse) what you think they should like because you like it.
My high school boyfriend, after 2+ years of dating decided one Christmas that a nice gift for me would be a brown plaid shirt. Which he purchased by taking 4 female friends of his (of whom I wasn’t overly fond) to the mall for an evening to help him choose. He gave each of them a fun bracelet to thank them for their help.
A man I was living with as a grown-up got me a sauerkraut barrel for Valentine’s one year, so I could make sauerkraut next fall. Because he loved the homemade sauerkraut like his mom used to make. The bonus was that his mom came over for 2 whole days in a row to show me exactly how to make perfect sauerkraut.
One fella I actually had notions of settling down with, decided he would come over and cook me a spectacular dinner for my birthday. He arrived 2 hours late, forgot half the groceries he needed and left me with a bottle of champagne while he went out shopping. By the time he finally got back, most of the champagne had been consumed. (If you’ve ever had most of a bottle of champagne on an empty stomach while really angry, you’ll have some idea of how I was feeling by the time he actually started cooking). Then I find out he’s making something with mussels which he knew perfectly well made me hurl. He reckoned I’d love them the way he was preparing them though.
I didn’t. In fact, I continued to not like them for the next 2 or 3 days.