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The White Elephant

I’ve often wondered where the “White Elephant” party came from and now I think I’ve finally figured it out. Every year I go to a party where they have a White Elephant gift exchange. Normally it is a cheap gift or even better a gag gift. A crappy gag gift that you received from an aunt or a grandparent that is so hideous that you don’t want to keep it but you don’t know what to do with it either. Now the white elephant party comes along and you have a use for that hideous gift.

So the party starts and everyone gathers around and one at a time the gifts are opened. It goes like this… gag gift, gag gift, gag gift, gag gift, ROLEX, gag gift… Everyone is laughing and having a great time until they see the Rolex, then they are A) Upset because they didn’t get the Rolex and B) Perplexed wondering who didn’t get the memo that these gifts were supposed to be cheap C) Livid because they didn’t get the Rolex and it isn’t their turn next so they don’t have the opportunity to steal.

I think the person that didn’t get the memo was a white person and since that person was also considered a huge DUMBO for bringing the expensive nice gift they were referred to as the white elephant. Had this initial person been brown or black then the White Elephant party would probably be referred to as the Black Elephant or the Brown Elephant.

One year I happened to be the recipient of the really nice gift. It is a Pena that is still hanging on the wall in my apartment today. I think however, that if you get the Rolex one year then that forever cancel’s you out from ever receiving the “Rolex” gift again because I have been to about 50 of these parties since I received the Pena and at all of them I either get a cornicopia or sponge bob square pants talking piggy bank.

So there you have it. The meaning behind the White Elephant party as told by Eddie Renz.

Have yourself a Merry little Christmas…

By Evan Stark

Eddie Renz is an avid fan of Egyptology, Wilbur Smith and bacon. Not a fan of humility but often finds himself humbled when he is around people who understand numbers like the Fibonacci sequence and Pi.

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