Never tell your family you want to be an artist of any kind (even a computer artist) because they will, without fail, get you crayola pastels, sketchbooks, pencil sharpeners, those little-kid watercolor sets and/or "How to Draw Krazy Kartoon Karacters!! (ages 8 and up)" every year no matter how old you get.


A CD player.

I'm deaf.

King Doom

I got the bumper book of serial killers once. All teenage boys like looking at autopsy photos of some hooker who got found in three different alleyways all at once, right?


A couple years ago I helped my then-boyfriend make a big batch of brownies to give various people as Christmas gifts. As I was wrapping them up into packages he told me to wrap up one extra, because that was my gift.

I not only helped him make my gift, but he wanted me to wrap it too. Plus, we made the brownies at his sister's house, using all her ingredients. I had gotten him a cashmere scarf. I should have known better, because he was a slacker drummer.

Or maybe it was karma for what I gave my mother the year she had a mastectomy. I got her a really nice blouse, but when she opened it she said "Oh how pretty. It's...double...breasted?" Yes, I bought my dear sweet post-mastectomy mother a double-breasted blouse. I don't know why I didn't notice that when I bought it.

Since then I feel that I don't deserve any presents.


My grandmom gave me a box of Addams Family cereal for Christmas one year. For my younger brother? Air Jordans.

"He asked for those for months! You didnt tell me what you wanted but I know you like this. I saw you eating it once."


A few years ago, we decided to get all fancy and brew up some homemade infused vinegar for a few of our culinary-inclined friends. Except that the bottles that we ended up using were not the bottles we had sterilized (two different tubs -- the extras were going to be used as flower vases and just needed to be rinsed out), which invites fun stuff like botulism bacteria to the party. We realized that we used the wrong bottles a few days after Christmas and had to E-mail everyone and tell them to throw their new gift away.


When I was about 14, me and my best friend had a conversation on the phone about Playboy Bunnies. She mentioned them, I'd never heard of them, she explained what they were. She said they were really pretty, and I wanted to see, so I went on playboy.com to see if I could find photos.

Needless to say, I couldn't, and I thought no more of it.

However, we had a shared family computer, and my telltale sister saw the site in the browser history and told my mum. Neither of them mentioned this to me, until one day I mentioned to my sister about the Playboy bunnies and how I couldn't find a photo on the site (I don't think GIS was around then, or if it was, I wasn't aware of it). She said smugly that she'd seen it in the history and told mum, and they'd had some little discussion about me being a teenage freak and looking up porn.

Never fucking mind that playboy.com is the last place you'd EVER look for porn. They'd made their decision, and they were sticking to it.

Six years later, aged 20, I was bewildered to receive an absolute boatload of that fucking disgusting Playboy merchandise.

In among this haul were several slightly-damaged holographic notebooks, a pencil case, a pen, and worst of all, a fucking bright pink plastic Playboy lava lamp. It wasn't even the good kind of lava lamp, it just had shitty transparent fluid with a fuckton of hot pink foil bunny heads floating in it. Jesus, it was ugly.

You can imagine my face as I bemusedly unwrapped Playboy gift after Playboy gift.

Seriously, one visit to the site when I was 14 warrants a whole Christmas set six years later?!


A few years back, my mom gave me and each of my brothers something that we can use to (supposedly) break our car windows after we crash into a river. It's made of cheap plastic, and I'm pretty sure it was somewhere between pages 12 and 23 in a Fingerhut magazine.


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