The Gifted Blog

February 23, 2011

A Tale of Three Knives

I've told you about the Valentine's gifts I gave, but I didn't write about the ones I received.

The story starts with this sad photo of our knife. This knife was a wedding gift, one of the best knives I've ever used. Unfortunately, while hacking open a couple of acorn squash, it chipped. We were highly disturbed.

Our friends urged us, "That's terrible! You should return it!" I pulled out the original box and took a look at the product warranty:
Damage to a product caused by accident or improper use will not be covered under warranty. Certain foods are too hard to be cut with a knife and should be avoided such as: frozen items, bones, shellfish shells, hard squashes, hard cheeses, nut shells, blocks of chocolate, etc.

Oops. Our bad.

The funny thing is, the knife is so good that we continued to use it anyway. Call us crazy, call us cheap, but it was one of those things we meant to replace and never got around to.

Cut to Valentine's Day eve. I came home from work with the aroma of something fresh from the oven and a knife-shaped package to open on the dining table. It was surprisingly light. Inside I found...

Yes - a fake knife made from a bubble mailer, packing tape, and piece of wood. G smiled. "I figured if it was going to look like a knife anyway I should at least surprise you."

He handed me the real knife.

And the aroma? After years of hearing G compare every red velvet cake we've eaten to his mom's recipe, he got it from her and made it for me! N helped, which explained his unusually bright red mouth.

Thanks, honey. It was a good Valentine's!

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  1. That is so cute! I love that cake!

  2. @Turtle - Yes, it was a pretty cute set of Valentine's gifts. We don't always know whether or how to celebrate V-Day, so I think this was a pretty good year!

  3. Are you superstitious about giving/receiving knives as gifts? My mother told me that if you receive a knife as a gift you must 'pay' the gifter in return by enclosing a penny with their thank you note. Do you know of any other superstitions or folklore about giving and receiving gifts? - Hillary S

  4. @Hillary - Wow, great question. I'm not, but after hearing your mom's story I'm intrigued to hear other gift-giving folklore!

    Come to think of it, there are some Japanese folktales about gift-giving. In one, a poor old man goes to town to sell his straw hats, but can't sell any. It's particularly sad because it is just before New Year's and he and his wife won't have any way to celebrate. On his way home, trudging through the snow, he gives the hats to seven stone statues (who represent guardians of children). He only has 6 hats and ties his own kerchief on the head of the 7th statue. The next day, he and his wife are surprised to find a beautiful rice cake for New Year's at their door, with footsteps leading to and from the grateful statues.

    If you get a chance to ask your mom, I'd love to know the origin of the knife/penny tradition!

  5. This story is so adorable. I love you guys. Save the date: I'm coming to visit you three (and bringing my man!) on Monday August 15th! (or the day after.) xx

  6. @Lexie - YEAH!! Can't wait to see you!!

  7. oh hi lexie! you have a man! wow. i like it.

  8. That red velvet cake looks amazing. I've never made one, but it sure makes a statement. I'd love to hear more gift giving folkloric tales and/or superstitions. It would make a good series, don't you think?

  9. @Hanna K. - Hi, I was just thinking about you! Thanks for the comment.
    : )

    @annekata - It was great to finally taste the family recipe I've been hearing about for so long! Yes, it would be fun to hear more reader stories about gift-giving. Hearing that knife one makes me think there must be so many more I don't know about!


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