The re-gift. There is not a person in the world who has not given one, or received one. Anyone who says different is either clueless, or lying. Everyone has had that moment when they have hastily wrapped something because they have either forgotten a gift giving occasion, are totally broke, or don't really care about the person getting said gift. And who hasn't opened a present only to find that the box has been opened, or there is Christmas wrap stuck to the back (oh, and it's not Christmas), or that the item in question was produced in 1985. NO ONE! We all do it. We all re-gift, and accept re-gifted items. So, I think it's time we all just admit, and be open about it.
Think of it this way: regifting is green gifting. Instead of taxing the earth to buy a new item, the giver is using something already here, and making sure it is not thrown away in vain (or put in a basement to gather dust). We should regift with pride! Wrap that piece of crap we didn't want in plastic grocery bags and write a card on the back of a magazine subscription card just to let everyone know how ecologically friendly it is.
Of course, while those regifting should do so with the zeal and self-satisfaction of Prius owners, they should also expect a little mocking and derision -- like Prius owners. The person receiving the regift should be allowed to recognize it, and loudly tell the story about it. For instance, my sister received a set of goblets for her wedding that had not been sold at the store in question for more than a decade. And they were not pretty goblets at all -- they were like something out of "Labyrinth." She should be able to tell that story with vigor, milking it for every laugh she can get -- especially when the regifter is present. After all, if they can't enjoy the story as well, what the point?
Oh, one more thing, the person getting the regift shouldn't have to write a thank you note. After all, if ecology is the point, do we really want to kill a tree to write a thank you note? Or, if a thank you note is required, I think the receiver should be allowed to send a thank you note previously sent to them. Think of the possibilities! Give a baby blanket, get a note for a chafing dish! Give a chafing dish, get a note for crotchless panties. It would be like a weird "Choose Your Own Adventure" book!
I am so glad I thought of this before the holidays! Or, rather, that I was forced to think of it. I mean, really, who gives a change purse as a baby gift? Turning it into a positive though, because I am sure my sister needs a change purse! And my nieces need "doll" clothes that Meg has grown out of! Oh, I can't wait to shopping in my basement -- and save the world.