Dec 22, 2006

T'is the Season for . . . Regifting

I just received my first regift candidate - a blue glass urn thingie 8" long and 3" in diameter covered in wire netting. It's supposed to hang from something (not the ceiling, because it's too small) and light up, but with what? The base is convex, so it can't hold a candle straight, and the bottom is too small for a tealight. The votive in this photo sort of resembles the gift, but I didn't receive the pewter holder (thank God!)

Last night's NBC newscast said that regifting is done more frequently in the northeast and midwest. Well, I'm from the mid-Atlantic and I regift all the time. I suspect my friends regift as well, and that this gift is a regift. Will it become a re-regift when I regift it?
I received another gift from this same person last year that was simply too horrible to pass on. Frankly I dreaded opening this year's package and faking a genuine smile of surprise and delight. The origin of this word is traced to a 1995 Jerry Seinfeld show titled The Labelmaker. The dialogue between George and Jerry came from the Word Spy website:

Here's the script snippet where regift was used in that Seinfeld episode (regifter was used earlier in the show; note, as well, yet another neologism: degift):

George: The wedding is off. Now you can go to the Super Bowl.

Jerry: I can't call Tim Whatley and ask for the tickets back.

George: You just gave them to him two days ago, he's gotta give you a grace period.

Jerry: Are you even vaguely familiar with the concept of giving? There's no grace period.

George: Well, didn't he regift the label maker?

Jerry: Possibly.

George: Well, if he can regift, why can't you degift?

Jerry: You may have a point.

George: I have a point, I have a point


eric3000 said...

I had no idea Seinfeld coined the term regifting!

Are you secretly hoping the person who gives you these stupid gifts is reading your blog?

Ms. Place said...

I wish!