Christmas Mispackings

Or "Greasy, Accidental Gifts for the Homeless"

Got some great Christmas loot this holiday. Unfortunately, my family continues to mock my tiny, tiny carry-on luggage by giving me large, awkward, pointy presents. And I am too stubborn to find anything of substance with which to carry said gifts.

This is why I left for the airport carrying many large and various items in a thick paper Old Navy bag with handles. I thought it would work. I hoped it would hold. I prayed it would survive the trip.

Ed’s Note: Say it with me: “foreshadowing.”

When loading the bag into the trunk of our rental car, I ripped off the first handle. I now had to fold over the other side and balance the bag against the handle of my tilted, wheeled carry-on. But still, in one piece. Whew.

The bag survived the flight, and the taxi ride to the Hill in DC, but in a doomed (but not unique) attempt to be helpful, my friend Angelo ripped off the second handle while lifting it from the trunk of the cab. He stood there with the pathetic string handle in his mitt, and a look of disbelief of his face; after a few seconds, he exploded in laughter, while I shook my head in disgust and rolled the top of the bag up like a paper take-out order from McDonald’s.

But the bag was otherwise intact; my gifts had made the voyage from Hamilton to Washington, D.C. safely.

After Angelo got some work done, we left on foot to meet his wife to drop off our bags,

Ed’s Note: Oh sweet tantric, Morrissette-type-ironic tragedy!

and the bag slipped off my carry-on, hit the sidewalk, and exploded. Everywhere. Pinata style. And we have nowhere to put anything.

We jammed a few small things into one of Ang’s bags, then the horrific discovery: the bottle of Diana’s Barbeque sauce, given to me by my cousins, had shattered, coating everything in spicy red greasy goodness. Awesome.

After a full minute of laughing so hard we were crying and could barely breathe, we did some triage work, with the resulting major casualties:

  • 1 bottle Diana’s BBQ Sauce
  • 1 bag of Curtis’ Rub ‘n’ Tug Rib Rub (it’s for food, pervert)
  • 1 cigarette-powered car seat warmer
  • 1 digital electrical outlet timer
  • Several small wine accessories

We had no choice but to scoop these items into the nearest trash bin, and continue on our way. Luckily I received two scarves, which served as handiwipes; any advice on how to clean BBQ sauce from wool would be appreciated.

My apologies to my family for the loss of these thoughtful gifts. Next year I will try to remember to pack an additional carry-on into my carry-on.

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