27532_124190460938022_8549_n(If you'd like to understand the high-tech toilet pictured left, you'll have to skip ahead to the end of the post.)

Whenever I do a giveaway, I always choose the winner by using the random number generator. Which is fair, but no fun. So sometimes when the entries are particularly amusing, I like to do something I call a "comment competition". This means that after I award the main prize randomly, I pit the funniest comments against each other for a secondary prize.

The giveaway in question is a $300 Beso Shopping Spree. To enter, everyone had to tell me their BEST OR WORST GIFT EVER. 

First things first. The winner (selected randomly) of the shopping spree is…


I'm sure there is more than one JEN so to differentiate, this is the JEN who got a "Dating for Dummies" book from her then boyfriend, now husband. 

Congratulations! You can now tell him that gift giving is way more successful when he is not involved.

Now I'm going to give the people who wrote the ten best comments for "WORST GIFT" an opportunity to win an "AWESOME GIFT" so they don't get screwed over twice. Everyone gets to vote for their favorite and the winner will be announced this Friday, Dec 9th.

Snapfish-canvas-PrintWhat's the awesome gift?

The winner of the WORST GIFT EVER will get to transform one of their personal photos into a beautiful, high quality 11X14 canvas photo print ($44) from MyPix2Canvas.com (pictured right).

Beats a "Dating for Dummies" book, right?



A GARBAGE CAN from my husband. Granted, we needed a new one and this was the stainless steel fancy model but I was still taken aback. I figured there would be something more inside. There was. Garbage bags.


An aphrodisiac gift basket (chocolate, massage oil, oysters etc) and a breast milk pump from my mother-in-law. We were not even trying to get pregnant and I am allergic to shellfish! She either really wanted a grandchild or she secretly wants to kill me.


The WORST birthday gift I ever got was a "Make Your Own Jerky Kit" from a friend. I've been a freaking vegetarian for over 10 years.


Hubby went to work early. I woke up to find a USED paper plate on the counter with HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WE ARE OUT OF TOILET PAPER scrawled on it. For real.


My dad has a Corvette restoration business. For as long as I could remember, he promised me and my twin sister a Corvette for our 16th birthday. When the day finally arrived, we ripped open our presents and sure enough, inside each box was a General Motors key on a Corvette keychain. When we arrived at the shop, he started laughing. Those keys did belong to a Corvette, but the car was in pieces. I spent the better part of the next year…nights, weekends and the summer, working in my Dad's shop putting that car together. 


Worst gift ever was a Christmas gift. We were at the house of a "odd" relative and I received a gift basket of two mis-matched stemmed glasses, a coupon to olive garden (not a gift certificate but a coupon), and a bag of dried split peas. Ask my husband for verification – it was addressed to the both of us.


For my sweet sixteen, my extremely responsible parents got me a fireproof document safe, instead of the car I was expecting. Talk about a let down.


My husband bought me a bumper. Really, a bumper for my car "in case I ever needed a spare bumper". It sat in the center of our living room for 6 months until I traded in the car and threw in the bumper.


By far the worst birthday gift I ever received was from a student when I taught 6th grade – it was a glass figurine of a bear ice-skating. The bad part? He was missing a leg. 


The worst b-day present? News my parents were getting a divorce followed by cake and ice cream on my sweet sixteen. When they called me to come downstairs, I thought they were going to give me a Volkswagen Cabriolet. 

FYI, if I was allowed to enter this competition, I would trounce you all. The worst gift I ever recieved was a mechanical toilet seat called the "Clean Butt" from my father. Apparently, he had tried the magical "Clean Butt" at a friend's house and loved it so much that he decided to invest in the company. Cue each of our family members receiving an "electronic bidet spa" for the holidays.

The worst part was that my father left it with my doorman as a surprise. In an unwrapped box. The packaging had a huge photo of the high-tech toilet seat with the words "Clean Butt" written across it and the slogan "The ultimate cleansing machine for the posterior".

Think that's bad enough?

My doorman handed it to me as I entered the building with my brand new boyfriend.

His name was Mike.

It's amazing he's still here.