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We've all heard the saying, "it's the thought that counts" when it comes to gifts.


But not all thoughts are kind. While Christmas should be honored with well intended gift exchanges, some people take the opportunity to surprise unknowing receivers with something unpleasant. Whether they're inspired by a grudge or petty argument, a passive aggressive gift can really spoil the holiday cheer.

Redditor u/e2hawkeye wanted to hear people's stories about purposefully bad gifts, and asked, "What was the most passive aggressive gift you ever got for Christmas?"

20. Ho ho ho

"My wife gave a very passive/aggressive gift to her brother's girlfriend one year for xmas. It wasn't actually the gift itself, it was the wrapping paper.

You see, this girlfriend was the woman who cheated with him on his wife, causing the marriage to fail and the the family to be split up. As you might imagine, my wife didn't care much for this woman. So, a gift was purchased and wrapped in Xmas paper. The paper had 'Ho Ho Ho' written all over it. Basically, just white paper with Ho Ho Ho.

Everyone got it. New Years was not fun."

Never_Been_Missed

19. You can't fall off of a video game, just sayin'

"When I was a kid I played a lot of video games and my dad gave me a skateboard in hopes I would go out more often.

Eventually that worked, but with a mountain bike"

zuugzwang

18. Backpacks are just more practical

"For whatever reason, it drives my boyfriend's mother and aunts bonkers that I use a backpack instead of carrying around a purse a lot of the time (like for going to/from work or just general travels). Every year, someone from that little family group always thinks they're doing me a favor by getting me a purse. They're also not even that great of quality (like it's that cheap pleather that scuffs and looks like crap after a week of use)."

jets3tter094

17. I would boycott Christmas too

"Half a bar of chocolate , I got my sister the $100 in cash that she insisted on and she got me absolutely nothing at first , but she was shamed by everyone else at the party so she threw a half eaten bar of chocolate at me that she was eating and told me that this was my present.

This year I am not celebrating Christmas. Nobody gets any presents. It will be just an ordinary day for me."

Erisian_Neko

16. What are you trying to say, mom?

"My mom's bought me a stationary bike and two scales. I feel like she's trying to tell me something"

PenguinSparkles007

15. This is why they don't visit

"I once had an entire sarcastic christmas where all my family members unanimously decided to get me gag gifts without telling each other. It wasn't a planned thing they just all got me insulting presents without realizing it. I ended up with EU de toilet cologne, a poo emoji stuffed animal (im 23) a shirt with a far right political cartoon insulting Bernie Sanders and a maga hat (im the only family liberal) and a candy cellphone in an iPhone box

Grandma: why don't you come visit?"

victorbarst

14. A gift only a mother in law would give

"My grandmother (dad's mother) once got my mom tablecloths for Christmas. My mom was not impressed"

fairyfinn

13. At least you can make a ton of mashed potatoes...?

Giphy

"My mom got my wife a 10 pound bag of potatoes.

When my wife asked literally 'what the heck', my mom said 'I worked the church food bank last weekend and I knew you were poor so I got you something to help out.'

Yeah.

Mom was something else."

SquidPoCrow

12. Speaks for itself

"a t-shirt saying 'I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right'"

MarcusofMenace

11. That backfired

"Cousin gave me a Spice Girls album hoping I wouldn't like it and would give it to her. 'You're a boy, you probably don't even know what Spice Girls is. If you don't like it, you should just give it to me.'

I listened to it so many times in spite if her that eventually all I really really really wanted was a zig-a zig-ahhhh."

thefartographer

10. That wasn't very subtle...

"My aunt gave me a box of 'Thank You' note cards.

On the gift tag, she wrote: 'You should try using these sometime.'"

Back2Bach

9. 'Santa' should mind his business!

Giphy

"When I was in middle school, going through my tomboy phase, 'santa' gave me a book called How to Raise a Lady, and when I opened it my mom just looked at me and said 'Maybe Santa is trying to give a hint.'"

azelakoort

8. So who got the iPod?

"When I was younger I managed to somehow lose my retainer at a Denny's. We searched everywhere, including the dumpster for over 30 minutes... my parents were furious. Fast forward a month, and the new iPod is released, and I really want it. I tell my parents that is the only thing I want for Christmas.

Come Christmas time, we are opening gifts and I see one that matches the shape of the iPod box... and sure enough, after unwrapping it - it's the new iPod! I hop up and immediately hug both my parents and I'm jumping around in joy! I sit back down and begin to open the box, and inside this iPod box is a new retainer. No iPod"

Cheesegratersuicide

7. Don't take your anger out on children

"All growing up my aunt always got me really nice clothing. I always got sweaters or sweatpants from American Eagle or Hollister which were very popular in my tween years. Then, she got mad at my mom for something and I started getting very juvenile presents including a children's robe with Hello Kitty on it that didn't fit, a plastic bracelet loom when I was 17, and a cork board in the shape of a flower."

Erimax24

6. At least you could donate them

"Pack of underwear from my mother in law 4 sizes too big. Smiled, thanked her, though that was the end. Told my husband I was going to donate them as they were too big. He told his mother and her reaction was, well she will eventually grow into them."

CylonsInAPoliceBox

5. I bet they never forgot their anniversary again

"One year everyone forgot my grandparents' anniversary (it's sometime in October). That Christmas every family got a professional picture of my grandparents with their anniversary on a plaque on the frame."

nikcoal

4. Those are the worst gifts under any circumstances

"A bible and a pretty hair band.

I'm a lesbian. At the time I was very butch."

shinyhappycat

3. Thanks a bunch, dad.

"They've definitely come from my father, both times.
1st time, I had a bad looking beard, so he gave me a pack of razors and some shaving cream.
2nd time, I asked for a pretty large gift -- a laptop. Apparently he didn't like that. He gave me a watch. A watch that he was previously given as a gift but didn't want. A watch that didn't work."

alexdiogenes

2. I think you can sue your boss for this...

"I had a real bully of a boss that delighted in making me miserable, but I was broke and desperate for a job so I didn't have a lot of options. The bullying kept escalating so I stupidly went to HR (because this was before I realized HR is there to protect the company not the employee). I told them what she'd been doing and gave them as much evidence as I had and told them that she was creating a hostile environment and I was genuinely concerned for my mental health.

Nothing came of the HR meeting and apparently that comment got back to my boss. Christmas rolls around and at the company party the bosses would always give their employees some little something. My co-workers got gift certificates to get a massage. I got a little tin bank that says 'I'm saving up for some therapy.'"

AbortRetryImplode

1. I'm guessing this is why they're an ex now

Giphy

"My ex bought a plush raccoon, and then drew tire marks on it to commemorate the time I hit a raccoon while driving. I felt bad about hitting it and cried. Ended up crying again Christmas morning."

Sheldwyn

Image by Anemone123 from Pixabay

Life is hard. It's a miracle to make it through with some semblance of sanity. We are all plagued by grief and trauma. More and more people of all backgrounds are opening up about personal trauma and its origins. Finally! For far too long we've been too silent on this topic. And with so many people unable to afford mental health care, the outcomes can be damaging.

All of our childhoods have ups and downs and memories that can play out like nightmares. We carry that, or it follows us and the first step in recovery is talking about it. So who feels strong enough to speak?

Redditor u/nthn_thms wanted to see who was willing to share about things they'd probably rather forget, by asking:

What's the most traumatizing thing you experienced as a child?
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Image by klimkin from Pixabay

Being single can be fun. In fact, in this time of COVID, being single can save lives. But the heart is a fickle creature.

And being alone can really suck in times of turmoil. None of us are perfect and it feels like that's all anyone is looking for... perfect.

Now that doesn't mean that all of us are making it difficult to partner up. Sure, some people are too picky and mean-spirited, but some of the rest of us are crazy and too much to handle. So one has to be sure.

The truth is, being single is confusing, no matter how much we try to match. So let's try to understand...

Redditor u/Mcxyn wanted to discuss some truths about love and our own issues, by asking:

Why are you single?
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Tiard Schulz/Unsplash

Whether you're an at home parent, a college student just leaving the nest, or a Food Network junkie, there are a few basic tips that everyone should know.

Chef's gave us some of their top tips for amateurs and beginner at home cooks that will really make a difference. They are trained professionals with years of experience in the kitchen, so they definitely know what we're all missing.

If you're looking to improve some of your cooking skills and techniques, but you're still learning how to boil water correctly, this list is for you.

Redditor BigBadWolf44 wanted in on the secrets and asked:

"Chefs of Reddit, what's one rule of cooking amateurs need to know?"

Let's learn from the masters!


What a common mistake!

"A lot of the time when people add salt to a dish because they think it tastes flat, what it really needs is an acid like lemon juice or vinegar."

- Vexvertigo

"Instructions unclear I drugged my dinner party guests and now they're high on acid."

- itsyoboi_human

"Yes! Or tomatoes. They're pretty acidic too and go with so many things. Our dinners are so much better once the garden tomatoes are ripe. Or if a dish is too acidic, oil/butter or a little sugar can help add balance to it."

- darkhorse85

"Like tomato and eggs. Every Chinese mom makes those slightly differently and I haven't had a tomato egg dish I didn't like yet."

- random314

"There's a book called 'Salt Fat Acid Heat' that comes highly recommended to amateur cooks."

- Osolemia

"Reading even just the first chapter about salt made a lot of food I cooked immediately better, because I finally understood salt wasn't just that thing that sat on the dinner table that you applied after the meal was cooked."

- VaultBoy42

"Salt is important for sweets. A batch of cookies without that little hint of salt doesn't taste quite right."

- Osolemia

Unfortunately, this tip might not be accessible to everyone. Many people who contracted COVID can no longer use their sense of smell the way they used to.

"Have a friend that lost his smell from COVID, and now he only recognizes if food is salty, sweet, sour or bitter."

- AlphaLaufert99

"Just wait until he gets his sense of smell back and a ton of foods smell like ammonia or literal garbage now. Yeah, that's fun... It's been 7 months for f*cks sake just let me enjoy peanut butter again!!!!!!!!!"

- MirzaAbdullahKhan

You can't take back what you've already put in.

"You can always add, but you cannot take away."

- El_Duende666

"I find people's problems usually are they're too scared to add rather than they add too much."

- FreeReflection25

"I see you also grew up white in the mid-west."

- Snatch_Pastry

Safety first!

"Not really a cooking tip, but a law of the kitchen: A falling knife has no handle."

- wooddog

"I'm always so proud of my reflexes for not kicking in when I fumble a knife."

"If I drop anything else, my stupid hands are all over themselves trying to catch it (and often failing). But with a knife the hardwired automatic reaction is jump back immediately. Fingers out of the way, feet out of the way, everything out of the way. Good lookin out, cerebellum!"

- sonyka

"Speaking of KICKING in. On first full time cooking job I had a knife spin and fall off the counter. My (stupid) reflex was to put my foot under it like a damn hacky sack to keep it from hitting the ground. Went through the shoe, somehow between my toes, into the sole somehow without cutting me. Lessons learned: (1) let it fall; (2) never set a knife down close to the edge or with the handle sticking out; (3) hacky sack is not nearly as cool as it could be."

- AdjNounNumbers

"Similarly, NEVER put out a grease or oil fire with water. Smother with a lid or dump baking soda in there (do not use flour, as it can combust in the air making things worse)."

- Metallic_Substance

How else will you know it tastes good?

"Taste the food."

- OAKRAIDER64

"Also don't be afraid to poke and prod at it. I feel like people think the process is sacred and you can't shape/flip/feel/touch things while you cook them. The more you are hands on, the more control you have."

"No, this does not include situations where you are trying to sear something. Ever try flipping a chicken thigh early? That's how you rip a chunk out of it and leave it glued to the pan until it's burnt."

- Kryzm

Here's one just for laughs.

"When you grab a pair of tongs, click them a few times to make sure they are tongs."

- Kolshdaddy

"People really overlook this one. You've gotta tong the tongs a minimum of 3 times to make sure they tong, or else it can ruin the whole dish."

- BigTimeBobbyB

If you're looking to get into cooking or to improve you technique, pay attention to these few tips.

Salt generously, add an acid to brighten things up, and don't forget to taste your food!

If all else fails, you can always order take out.

Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.

Victoria_Borodinova/Pixaba

As part of the learning process, children often do embarrassing things before they learn a little more about the world and all the different implications therein. While the inappropriate moment is usually minor and ends in laugher some instances are truly mortifying.

One such instance involved a little sister who was around 6 at the time. It was the 90s and at the height of the youth-focused PSAs (think the frying egg representing your brain). One type was a safety PSA about stranger danger. The speaker would remind the children that if a stranger tried to take you anywhere to yell “Stop, you're not my mommy/daddy" to raise the alarm.

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