Christmas shopping this year was a little hard. You and I agreed not to get each other anything, but when I went shopping for my sister at Goodwill, that was a promise I knew I couldn't keep.
I justified my actions by telling myself that it was barely four dollars, which is like, the cheapest Christmas gift ever. I also said that it wasn't a serious present, because I knew you would hate it. It was more like a present for myself, because your disgust would be highly entertaining. And anyway, you brought it on yourself for giving me the idea.
When Christmas rolled around, I stopped at your house on Christmas Eve night, after visiting with my family. Your step-dad was out of town for Drill, so it was just you and your mom that night.
I brought the box out from behind my back, and you looked at me, exasperated. Really?
Really, I said, grinning. I knew you already knew what it was. But you rolled your eyes and told me it was fine because you and your mom had something for me anyway. We exchanged boxes and you opened yours first.
You held up the sweater, saying Wow. It's uglier than I expected. You absolutely hated it, and I felt accomplished. I opened my box next to discover that your mom had made me a blanket with matching snow-flake pillow cases. They were adorable.
But all the excitement was far from over. Your mom and I insisted that you try the sweater on to see what it looked like. You fought us about it, but there was no way you could escape your fate.
Eventually, you finally pulled the sweater on over your t-shirt. It actually didn't look that bad, but you were itching to get out of it as soon as possible. Literally.
I watched as you folded it up and put it away in your closet, where it's been ever since.