This holiday season, one thing is as certain as eggnog is gross: You will be disappointed by some of your presents. Nobody understands this dilemma better than John Oliver, who promises, "At some point this month, you will unwrap a present that induces the sort of jaw-dropping disappointment that one normally associates with the term 'lettuce wrap.'" That's why, in an exclusive web segment, Oliver offered tips for re-gifting. It's a very important but underrated art form. When done right, re-gifting could save you a lot of anguish and money this holiday season.
Last Week Tonight might be on hiatus until February (try not to think about it; the time will pass), but Oliver isn't going to leave us to fend for ourselves during what many consider to be the most stressful time of the year. He's here to help with a very serious reality:
During the holidays, you are going to receive at least one profoundly underwhelming gift. That's just a fact.
Some examples? A scented candle, "which is just a candle that's extra desperate for attention." An Edible Arrangement, "which says, 'I don't know you very well, but if you're anything like me, you have to eat or else you'll die.'" Or a stuffed animal, "essentially just a creepy ornament you have to reposition before you can comfortably have sex."
That's why he's here with a "handy holiday guide to the art of re-gifting." If you follow his rules, you'll be able to get rid of all your terrible presents and cover all your gifting bases, and your friends and family will be none the wiser.
Rule #1: Never Re-Gift To Someone Who Knows The Original Gifter
It's incredibly uncomfortable to get busted ditching something that was clearly meant for you, whether it was an ugly sweater or— worst case scenario — an engagement ring.
So yeah, maybe don't re-gift among your inner or even peripheral circle. Pawn off your unwanted items on people whom you don't have any mutual connections with.
Rule #2: The Best Place For Re-Gifting Is An Office Secret Santa Party
Because regifting there is like peeing in the ocean. Sure, it's not right, but it's an ultimately harmless solution to an urgent problem.
Rule #3: Personalize The Gift
How? Write a message to the recipient to throw them off your plan.
Something intimate and vague, like "Saw this and couldn't resist" or "This is so you!"
But of course, not if the gift is something offensive, like a self-help book or a box of wine.
Rule #4: Disguise Your Gift
To further throw the recipient off the re-gift scent and "maximize your plausible deniability," re-wrap your gift, lest you want it to be obvious you're pawning off an appliance you didn't want. Or if you're not going to rewrap it, put it in a gift bag.
Gift bags are the sweatpants of gift wrapping. Sure, it's lazy, but it's undeniably better than not putting on anything at all.
Rule #5: Stick To A Single Re-Gift Per Person
Last but not least, the most important rule is:
Do not attempt to redistribute all of your gifts amongst your friends and family like a festive Ponzi scheme.
Watch the segment below.
Images: Last Week Tonight/YouTube