Wednesday 17 December 2014

The Good Life

My buddy called me up today and asked if I wanted to go to the mall with him. His family do what is called a Chinese Christmas each year, and the gifts have to be around the $10 value. Each person picks a number and then sequentially selects a gift, then unwraps it, one person at a time. The second person can select a gift or steal the first persons gift. It goes around a couple of times and then at some randomly, arbitrary time, the stealing stops. I’m not really sure how it works, and since I am not involved, I just don’t care. I do like the idea of a gift under ten dollars though. It seems to be politically incorrect to call it a Chinese Gift exchange, kind of like calling someone an Indian giver. Neither of the terms makes sense and I suspect that both names will disappear in the very near future.
We walked around the mall for a while, drifting in and out of stores, looking for that elusive ten dollar gift. Not surprisingly, there just aren’t a lot of really good, interesting gifts to be had for less than ten bucks. There is a lot of crap, but you always want to give something that the whole family will fight over. Well, that’s what I would like to do. We left the mall empty handed, but on the plus side, I figured we had earned a coffee break.

Years ago I heard of two sisters that lived on opposite sides of the country who had come up with a novel way of gifting at Christmas. The object was to keep the dollar amount to less than ten dollars, but to wrap as many gifts as possible. The winner was the sister who wrapped the most and best gifts under $10. They had been doing this for a couple of decades when I heard about in and were really good and creative with their choices. They would collect give away items throughout the year and of course friends and other family members would give them items they collected for free. It sounds like a hoot to me, but I’m pretty cheap.
I might just start a variation of that game for next year. I don’t expect anyone will reciprocate, but it will be fun never the less. No one but me wants a pair of found gloves that aren’t a match, or a broken iPhone from the side of a highway. There is a lot of cool stuff to be found if you but keep your eyes open. Yep! I’m going to do it, so be warned family and friends. If I find something that I think “is you”, don’t be surprised to find it wrapped and under your tree next Christmas.

I have a couple of days till Christmas this year, but mostly I am done my shopping. All I have to do for the next few days is to eat cookies and watch crappy TV Christmas movies. Ahhhh…the good life!

Here is a link to the rules of a Chinese Gift exchange...It's not too late!

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