122407santa.jpgTelevision producer Matthew Weiner recently shared his holiday gift horror stories with the Times, relating a sad/funny discovery made by his brother while exchanging a Day-Glo orange sweater given to him by their parents; it turned out they spent $1.00 on the item. Which still doesn’t sound as bad as the gift Weiner got: “a crimson suede Nascar jacket covered with sewn-on patches with emblems of Skoal chewing tobacco and Drakkar Noir cologne. On the back was a huge Budweiser insignia.”

On Christmas Eve the Times opened up a thread for online readers to share some of the worst gifts they’ve received. A man from Massachusetts got “a tire from my then fiancé. I gave her an engagement ring as my gift. We never married. Not because of the tire per se, but you'd have to say it was a bad omen. I hated that tire.” Michael from Brooklyn got “rehab - from my parents.” Some of the other standouts:

  • “A dozen No. 2 pencils and a cup.”
  • “I received a Bob Marley shirt two years back. I HATED, and still HATE it to this day. Just thinking about it irks me. I wondered what I could have done this person to give me such a shirt.”
  • “My sister and brother-in-law gave my husband and I eatable body paints at a family gathering.She said it was because I was an artist.”
  • “A garage door opener from my new fiancé on our first Christmas together. I gave him The Joy of Sex.”
  • “A toilet seat! No lie..It had pink country style designs on it, but still!!”
  • “A bag of pennies.”
  • “Every present my mother has ever given me.”

What’s the most disappointing present you pretended to be grateful for this Christmas?