I arrived home from work today to spy two oversized envelopes leaning between the screen and front doors of the house. Since my mail is put through a slot in the door, anything that cannot be shoved through the narrow opening winds up there. I hadn’t ordered anything, so could not imagine what the packages contained, but will admit to a little trickle of excitement that perhaps someone sent me a little something just because I am swell. No such luck.
With the two 8” x 10” padded envelopes tucked under my elbow, I maneuvered myself and my personal belongings into the house, bent down to gather the mail that lay on the floor in the foyer and called my hellos to Jess. As I dumped everything onto the kitchen table I looked at the first package and saw that it was addressed to Harrison. Well, his birthday is coming up, so perhaps it was a gift for that. Then I took at look at the second (and, I now realized, identical) envelope and saw that it was addressed to George. Return address: Amazon. Contents: Likely gift cards. Very personal (note sarcasm) gift cards. And then, if you want the truth, I got pissed.
I knew immediately who the mailings were from. (Don’t ask me to share…I will not.) And, I also immediately knew that they were not a birthday gift, but a Hannukah gift, one for each of my children…one of whom has not been addressed as George in nearly TWO years. It infuriated me.
I can understand the occasional slip up with pronouns. It happens. I can understand periodically starting to say George (this usually occurs when said child has done something which results in any adult’s need to address her, shall we stay, strongly). It, too, happens. But sending a gift which, one would hope, is supposed to carry some degree of thoughtfulness (it is a gift, after all) and using the wrong fucking name? I simply cannot understand that.
In fact, I will go one step further. I would go so far as to call it cruel, thoughtless and insulting. I would like to (and even tried to) believe it was an innocent mistake, but given the fact that the same “mistake” was made last year at this time, I am less willing to cut slack than I might otherwise be. One could argue that if you are so generous (there’s that sarcasm again) as to send a gift, you should also be generous of spirit and get the kid’s name (and, actually, gender) right.
A part of me wants to dump the package in the trash and let Jess be none the wiser, but that would be unfair to her. Another part of me wants to send a kindly worded email to the sender gently pointing out their “mistake”. A third part of me? Well, that part wants to rip the sender’s head off.
I doubt that the person who was so callous in their “generosity” will even see this, but calling them out on my blog makes me feel just a little bit better. If they do happen to see this: An obligatory gift is neither necessary nor appreciated. A modicum of interest in Jess would be far more meaningful.