The Christmas Loot aka Smile And Pretend You Like It

25 12 2009

I dare say there is going to be a bunch of post-Christmas blogs shortly, so it doesn’t hurt to add mine.   These days, being the anti-social curmudgeon that I am, I don’t get a great deal of presents.  Being the last child of four, I drew the imaginary line in the sand a few years ago when I realised that I was being royally shafted by my elders and juniors alike.

Let me explain.

I have three elder siblings, as I mentioned.  The eldest is my sister, and she and her dastardly husband spawned three mini versions of themselves.  My eldest brother and his chosen life-partner have hatched three children and my other brother has raised the bar by bringing four bundles of joy into the world.  I’m not married, and have no children that I am aware of.  There was that one time… but anyway, back to the Christmas thing.

Years ago, when all this hatching of children was in full force, our families would buy for every person, as generally happens around this time of year.  The gifts would be wrapped and placed under the tree, and my mother would fuss over us as we’d collect at the family home for Christmas dinner.  These days mother starts Christmas day with a hearty “Ba Humbug” just like the rest of us.  What can I say? We wore her down.

The time would come for gifts to be handed out, and I’d present each parent and child with a gift from me and my emaciated bank account.  They’d grunt back and hand me one gift back ‘from them’.  ‘Them’ of course, being each family group.  Granted, I’ve never been good at mathematics, but lets work this out using a spreadsheet-

Clearly, the result is WTF.  18 to 4 is not the result I was looking for.

Now, I’m not greedy. I do actually enjoy buying thoughtful gifts, but one can’t help but feel that it’s a  bit much when it’s like it is.  What doesn’t help is that none of them, especially those old enough to know better ever actually say ‘Thank you.”

So one Christmas I let it be known far and wide that I’d not be buying gifts this year, or any year, except for my Mum, who is magnificent and my Dad, who is a douche but lives with Mum so I have to include him.   After much Hum-Buggery so-to-speak, they agreed to my deal and that was that.  I wouldn’t buy for the hordes and they wouldn’t buy for me.  This has been the case for at least the last five years and suits me fine.  I do spend quite a lot on my parents, but I’m happy with that.  They all still swap gifts and Mum complains for weeks later how the rude little bastards never say thank you.

We did, at one point, explore other gift options.  One year brother #1’s wife brought up the ‘Secret Santa’ idea, which involves everyone drawing a name from a hat and buying just for that one person.  Suddenly everyone realised they may be the one to be picked out of the hat by my sister. She is the worst gift-giver ever.   Shortly before I drew the line at present exchanges, she gave me a box of floppy disks for Christmas. Yes, floppy disks.  Remember those? Another time she gave my 70-year-old father a book of instructions on how to make paper aeroplanes.

The Secret Santa idea died without getting off the ground and we will never speak of it again.

Merry Christmas and a jolly Ha, Bumhug.

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2 responses

25 12 2009
Melissa

we do the secret santa thing and buy for the kids. It is a constant reminder how little my family know me every year. This year I got a toiletry bag and a book (the third in a series of which I have not read the first two)

30 01 2010
Cackle

ROFL I don’t remember giving the old man a “how to make paper aeroplanes book” BWAAAHAHAHAHA

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