Art of Recycling Gifts
idea actually comes to you from my Mom, Marge Spira. Shes
never been able to throw anything out. Subsequently, she has
a plethora of gifts that now can be "recycled."
recycling thing began between my Mom and her eldest brother,
Uncle Erry. For years they traded back and forth this tacky,
wooden sign that said "Shalom." Mom tells me she
bought it from a co-worker who made it from pieces of wood
for $12-then thought to give to Uncle Erry because she didnt
like it that much. It went back and forth from Cleveland to
Detroit several times. Each time the sign was left secretly
after a visit to be found as a joke after they left each others
house. Then one time my Mom gave it to Herman and I and we
mailed it wrapped as a gift to Uncle Erry and Aunt Renee in
Detroit. We put a note on the back of the box saying, "Heres
a little bit of Caroga Lake cheer."
me Uncle Erry and Aunt Renee were overcome with fits of laughter
when they opened it. After that, Mom tells me it "wound
up in my suitcase after a visit to Detroit. Each time we would
specifically NOT tell each other when we found it so the other
would never know and would not expect it at the other house.
For $12 we had $100 dollars worth of fun."
now branched out and taken recycling gifts to a new level.
When Herman and I showed up this past Thanksgiving, since
Hanukkah was the day after this year, we had brought the traditional
eight days of Hanukkah gifts for her.
be outdone, she went to her "locker room" in search
of gifts for us. We actually wound up with some neat stuff.
But in keeping with Moms tradition, Im going to
recycle one gift. But Ive already told the recipient
that its recycled. And Ive already told Mom Im
has taught me some good shopping sense. Well, I mean all about
recycled shopping gifts. For instance, how about all those
year end gift calendars you get? You cant possibly use
them all, why not pass them on? And all those watch-a-ma-call-its.
Such as, one of the things my Mom gave us this time is something
thats a static stick pad for your car dash and holds
eye glass cases, pens and such so they dont slide off
the dash. She also gave me a wadded up T-shirt in the shape
of a house that was a realtor type gift. Sorry, Mom, that
one wont make it into my drawer or anyone elses.
item we got actually has a use. Theres the knock-off
Montblanc $400 pen that she got for $5 to $10, I cant
remember which. A box of Hanukkah candles, which ironically
I got her some as well. I also bought her a new Hanukkah menorah.
Her response was, "You didnt have to do that. Mines
in the locker room." After which we all dissolved into
laughter. Saying something is in the locker room is like saying,
"Im going to California to get rich and famous."
Its very unlikely to ever be "discovered"
Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an
acting career in NYC and Los Angeles, now pursues free lance
writing from Caroga Lake here in Fulton County. Previous columns
may be accessed at her web site www.kathrynskorner.com"