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Have you ever had someone do something sweet and thoughtful–but not even close to what you wanted?

On FB, I posted something about not being able to find a writing topic that could hold my interest. That was mostly because I was in the midst of grading 165 research reports before the end of the marking period so that I could have grades uploaded in time. Stress aggravates my ADD, which I get from my father. His comment (yes, I’m FB friends with my dad under my author profile) was to read a magazine I wouldn’t normally read. That got me thinking about how I don’t read magazines anymore. I used to read them all the time as a teen. My parents were wonderful about getting subscriptions to any magazine we wanted. I used to read National Geographic every month. That was the magazine we all liked. After that, there was some confusion about who liked what, and the confusion came from the place where random acts of generosity resided.

When I was about 12, Sassy magazine came out. My friend had it, and I wanted it. I think I grew out of it by 14, but it kept coming. I never asked for an extension on the subscription, but the thing just kept coming and coming.

My dad had a similar experience with Playboy (which I, like everybody else, liked for the articles). He commented repeatedly about how my mom would keep buying him subscriptions even though he didn’t want the magazine. It was during that discussion that I marveled at how my Sassy magazines kept coming. He looked at me strangely and said, “You keep leaving those postcards to extend the subscription on the table, so when I do the bills, I send them in.” After a bit of a laugh, we agreed that he could ignore whatever fell out of the magazine. I got those darn things until I was 19, at which point I think it went out of business. Not sure. I stopped reading them long before.

As for my father, he talked to my mom about not getting Playboy anymore, and she listened. I come from a generous family, the kind who buy things for you because they think you want them, not because you actually do. Magazines aren’t the only thing that’s happened with. I love them and wouldn’t change them for the world, but now I have  boxes full of Carnival glass and no idea what to do with it.

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