I pride myself on being a great re-gifter. Not every bad gift makes a good re-gift. You need to put some thought into it. The unwanted religious paraphernalia? Not great candidates for re-gifting. Anyone who knows me, knows I would never buy the stuff. That special framed prayer or ceremonial plate would scream re-gift. But a lovely frame or photo album? BINGO! And therein lies the art â€“ the item in question may not be to your taste, but it can’t be so hideous that you’d never be caught dead buying it.
I myself have been the victim of re-gifting gone wrong. Weâ€™ve received stuff for our kids that has so obviously been passed along that I am tempted to call the giver and out them. Weâ€™re talking mismatched outfits from different stores on the same hangers, toys that are clearly gender-specific (and not specific for the gender we have), or shoes that are several sizes too small. A weird part of me wants to pawn these suckers off on someone else â€“ like a broken telephone of presents â€“ just to see if Iâ€™ll get busted!
One time, I received a used candle. USED!!! Another time, I unwrapped a lovely leather notebook. Turns out it was a freebie, a gift-with-purchase. I have to admit, the only reason I found out about that one was when I tried to return it and the saleswoman looked at me as though I had stolen the thing. So not only was the gift completely lame, but I was humiliated! After slinking out of the store, I had to confront the giver â€“ how can someone pass off a promo item as a present? The giver didnâ€™t even bat an eye, explaining they had to spend over $400 to get it. Umm, does that make it OK to pass it off as a gift? I donâ€™t think so.
Unfortunately, it looks as though my re-gifting days are coming to an end. First off, itâ€™s hard to re-gift someone you genuinely like, let alone love. Iâ€™ve been on the receiving end of lame, obvious re-gifts from a loved one and let me tell you â€“ it hurts. And secondly, Iâ€™m running out of acceptable re-gifts. Either people are getting smarter with what theyâ€™re choosing, or maybe weâ€™re just not getting as many gifts. The ones that never make it out of my cupboard are stuck in present purgatory for a reason â€“ they suck. How can I give away an itchy, ugly, baby blanket? Or jewellery that’s far more garage sale than estate sale? No one deserves a stinky perfume set (with matching faux crystal tray) or painted rock people. No one.
A last resort is the charity box. But be careful â€“ not only might you get busted by the giver, but someone may spot some of the duds and think theyâ€™re actually yours! Fact is, everyone thinks they have great taste. They donâ€™t. And thatâ€™s why, sometimes, it really is better to give than to receive.