What the HAYnes? And the ‘Worst Gift Giver in the World’ award goes to…

HUMOR – It is that time of year again.

It is five days before Christmas and we are all second-guessing our gift purchases. We wake up at 4 a.m. in a cold sweat and stress-eat an entire tin of Pirouette cookie sticks over that hastily purchased decorative rooster pitcher from eBay. Or is it just me who does this?

I have always been a horrific gift-giver. Some people might say that they are bad at choosing gifts, but that is only because those people have never received a belly button lint brush from me. There is no worse gift-giver in the world than yours truly.

A few examples of bad gifts from Christmas’ past:

For Christmas 1997 I gave my dear friend a stuffed, sombrero-wearing cactus which danced and sang “Feliz Navidad” as a nonironic, nonwhite elephant gift. The cactus may have contributed to the failure of her first marriage. At the very least it destroyed 1998 for her like one of those bad luck totems you might see on an episode of “The Brady Bunch.”

In 2002 I mailed a box of Oreo-flavored cereal to the man who eventually became my husband, as a gift. It seemed like a good idea at the time. Everyone loves cereal. Everyone loves Oreos. Oreo cereal! Where I went wrong was that most people do not appreciate breakfast food as a gift. I understand that now. But he still married me, so who is the real fool in this situation?

And the bad “gift of Christmas present”:

Like most bad decisions, this year’s horrifying gift purchase comes with a backstory and an inadequate excuse.

In my family, the most coveted family heirloom, after my mom’s piano and my grandma’s collection of red crystal, is my mom’s chicken-shaped gravy boat which pours gravy from its beak as though the gravy is being vomited.

My sister and I have both scoured the Internet for a similar gravy-barfing bird without success. I have called the manufacturer without luck. It is a truly irreplaceable item.

And it seemed that there was a giant, chicken gravy boat-shaped hole in the ceramics market. It is hard to believe that there is not more demand for this classy item. As a side note, if you are looking for a million-dollar idea, this may be the one.

Naturally, I decided to find one for my sister for Christmas this year.

After days of looking, a simple change in search terms produced a multicolored, gravy-regurgitating “rooster pitcher” on eBay, which I instantly purchased and am sure that my sister will be thrilled to find under her tree on Christmas morning. When people scream and throw their present across the room it means that they are thrilled about it, right?

You understand why I am gnawing my way through entire tins of holiday cookies in the middle of the night. There is a lot of pressure to buy a good gift. I have gained five pounds as a result of this rooster pitcher alone. Maybe in the future I should just give my sister my tins of cookies and save myself the trouble.


Elise Haynes chronicles family life in her blog Haynes Family Yard Sale. Any opinions stated in this column are her own and not necessarily those of St. George News.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2013, all rights reserved.


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  • My Evil Twin December 20, 2013 at 9:42 am

    Elise, I can identify with you on this. I used to work for a guy who drank a lot of whiskey and smoked cigarettes. For his birthday one year, I gave me a cigarette dispenser. It was a mule that held one pack of smokes. You would push it’s ears and it’s tail would lift and dispense a cigarette from it’s uh, underneath it’s tail.
    And then at Christmas that same year, I gave him a booze dispenser. It was a miniature outhouse. You pushed a button on the back, the door came open, and a figure of a little boy turned toward the door and “dispensed” booze from you know what. . .
    For some reason, I didn’t have that job for too many years. . . 😀

  • Sagemoon December 20, 2013 at 9:57 am

    You are a funny lady. Thanks for the laugh.

  • Hunter December 21, 2013 at 9:36 am

    I hope she doesn’t read your column or you just spoiled her surprise!

  • Elise's lucky sister December 25, 2013 at 9:39 pm

    As the recipient of said rooster pitcher, I can tell you it was perfect. There may have been squealing involved, but I will never admit to it, as I am not a preteen girl. 🙂

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