Tuesday, December 04, 2012
The culture of Christmas gift-giving in which the two of us, She(WMBO) and Yo!, were raised was very different.
The way I was raised, no receipt was necessary. You paid attention to the person you would be giving to and buy the perfect gift. She was raised in a household where the recipient had no problem asking for the receipt to make an exchange the next day.
About 10 years ago, I observed her borrow Dani's leather coat several times in November. So I thought "Ah ha! I'll get her a leather coat"
I found a coat almost exactly like Dani's except it didn't have the belt. (Or maybe it did. A belt was involved one way or the other.) I felt so clever. I had gotten THE Gift for her. Two days after Christmas she asked me for the receipt.
I was beyond pissed. I was hurt.
The next year I came up with a new plan.
We would not buy each other Christmas presents. We would buy our own Christmas present and wrap it up.
"Where's the surprise in that?" she asked.
"I will be surprised at what I got you and you will be very pleased at your excellent taste. We get exactly what we want. No need for returns. And no hurt feelings."
"My feelings aren't hurt if you return things."
"That's because I never make returns. It's my feeling that get hurt."
"Oh! Are you still mad about that coat?"
Ten years later and the answer is still, "Yes. And the word is hurt."
So Christmas morning I was surprised to discover that I wanted her to have more china knick-knacks from Ireland for me to dust. She on the other hand was absolutely stunned to discover that she thought I should finally, after 10 years of asking, have that set of cast iron cookware that she always said was nasty stuff.
And we have been doing it ever since.
December 3 and I still have no clue what I am getting for Christmas. I have been told, though that I have gotten her the perfect present this year.