The misanthrope’s advent calendar – day 16

by Pseud O'Nym

One thing that annoys me about christmas – and there are many – are ‘Bingo presents’. So called because they are presents received but not opened or tampered with, that belie no sense whatsoever of ever having been a present. In this way, the recipient can then re-wrap it the next year so that they can wrap it up and pass it on. Perhaps you know as something else, but whatever there called, they suffer the exact same fate. I mean, we’ve all done it, some more than others; it’s like shoplifting, but without a criminal record.

This money saving tactic is usually reserved for friends and relatives you rarely see and neatly solves the problem of what to get them, if they visit unannounced, or both. This goes hand in hand with the ideal way to open any present, which is to be looking down when you open the present so as to conceal your initial reaction to it, and then to raise your head with a beaming smile and exclaim ‘Oh, it’s just what I wanted!’

For me, the ultimate in a bingo present are Guylain chocolates, because everyone likes a box of chocolates at Christmas and they suggest a level of expenditure that both isn’t cheap or extravagant. It’s a present that everyone can feel good about. I mean, I doubt if anyone has been into a shop and actually bought a box of Guylain chocolates since 2012. Quite possibly just like Saturn, there’s a ring of Guylain chocolates just doing the rounds, being passed on year after year, until their sell-by-date has expired (although it didn’t stop my partner’s mother once getting an edible present that was long past its sell-by-date).

Of course, the inherent problem with bingo presents – and the reason that I call them bingo presents – is the risk of you giving someone a bingo present that they gave you a few years earlier! To no-ones surprise, this week we discovered that Donald Trump Jar has suffered this fate at the hands of his father! From ‘birther’ to ‘re-gifter’!

Is there start to this presidents talents?