Gifts to Avoid: 15 Cautionary Tales – Jane Boyd

Jane gives some tongue-in-cheek advice on gift giving this holiday.

For some of us, gift giving is a minefield. Buying Christmas, birthdays and anniversary presents is fraught with dangers which can leave your loved one distressed, disappointed and disillusioned and you deprived, disfigured and divorced. So, for you (mostly men) who are gift-guilty, here are a few words of advice with real-life examples:

1.  If you forget to buy a gift on your first Christmas together, own up and apologise then hand over a large cheque to be spent on lots of lovely things in the sale.

2.  Don’t try to pass off something you have in your car as the gift unless you want it to be your last Christmas together. Here’s a cautionary tale. “Sorry it’s not wrapped,” he said.  “You’ll be able to light your fire without burning your fingers.” She looked down at a small plastic lighter with a nozzle on the end of it. On the front was a sticker, “Woolley Edge Motorway Services, £1.99.” She placed it on the sofa, next to his pile of gifts and his face dropped as he saw the error of his ways – ILB (repeat offender). The dog enjoyed his turkey.

3.  When you have a flash of brilliant inspiration, think to yourself, I haven’t ever had a flash of brilliant inspiration before, maybe I should check with her friend before I buy these six identical expensive crystal jugs so that we can give an individual jug of water to each of our whiskey-drinking guests. Shame about the Christmas dinner MC.

4.  If you are excitedly thinking, I know, she really wants a new washer and dryer, I’ll order one in my lunch hour (PJ, I’m talking to you). Think again. This is not a gift, it is a necessity and if you were my husband, you would find yourself having to use both appliances a. to ensure you have any clean underpants to wear and b.for warmth as you unroll your sleeping bag on the kitchen floor.


5.  When you see a fabulous heavy satin dressing gown and your head says, I can just see her in that. You probably have, every morning since last Christmas Day. Glad the spare room mattress was reasonably comfortable, MC. I think a month was pretty lenient!

6.  On your first wedding anniversary either buy a decent gift or a box of tissues to mop up the tears of despair as she reassesses your value 5n her life. If you opt for the latter, do buy a massive bunch of red roses the next day to show her she’s wrong. Do not leave them in your motorcycle pannier overnight. A bunch of wilting flowers is not a good way of improving your romantic image. ILB, this is you – AGAIN!

7.  When you ignore statements such as, don’t buy the pink watch, or, don’t buy any more chocolate because I’m on a diet, don’t be surprised about your new mushroom stroganoff hairdo ILB.

8.  If you hear a voice droning on for most of December saying, ‘If you don’t buy me the new Robbie Williams CD, I’m divorcing you,” don’t get cross when your Christmas Pudding gets flushed down the toilet because you bought the latest George Michael CD – guess who.

9. I f you buy a big diamond ring then propose in a flamboyant manner, don’t be surprised to find the nurses have no pain relief when you go for the stitches after she takes it to the jewellers’ for a valuation and it turns out to be fake. C’s ex-husband.

10.  A pink oven glove is a good joke present. A pink oven glove is NOT a good main present. A pink oven glove makes a great boxing glove.  BR.

11.  When your partner thinks the painting you have bought is a joke, bought in a charity shop, tell her you tried so hard to find the exact right thing but diamonds are so personal you’ll have to take her to choose them – MC (hope the gravy stains came out of your new shirt).

12.  One power tool is an unfortunate error, buying one every year for five years is a potential divorce MVH.

13.  An ironing board cover is not a gift, it’s an insult. A good ironer can do twelve shirts an hour; how many can you do now NDE?

14.  Just because your gorgeous wife is the only woman in your household, does not mean you have an excuse to buy her a doormat with chickens on for a Christmas present. A weak smile is a hint not praise DT.

15.  Buying a set of juggling balls and a box of dominoes as the main present then making her pay the credit card bill is a good alternative to a vasectomy ILB (yes, him again).

Follow this advice and enjoy happy guilt-free gift giving guys. Have a merry Christmas Holiday.

The writer of this article does not condone the use of violence or aggression as a means of revenge.

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