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It’s the thought that counts…usually

A car, a party, a dress. These are normal sweet sixteen gifts. What I got may be illegal.

One of my close neighbors always visits after my birthday parties, and always comes prepared with a gift.

Receiving gifts I like. It’s her choice in gifts that I have a problem with.

Until I turned ten, she would only give me Power Rangers paraphernalia. Once the double digits came, I developed a stockpile of useless home décor.

Explain what use a 12-year-old has with a ceramic clown. Exactly.

On my sweet sixteen, my neighbor attached a note to my gift: “Hope you like it. I’m sure you’ll need it.”

It was a book. Lost Girls to be precise. Finally, an actual gift!

I normally read the back or inside cover before opening a book, but this time I went all carpe

diem and opened to the centerfold.

I learned three things that moment.

1.      Lost Girls is a graphic novel.

2.      Lost Girls has very vivid, very detailed images

3.      I didn’t like the gift.

One word popped out from the book jacket, which I mistakenly read too late.

Erotica. Lost Girls is erotica.


I still sent her the obligatory thank-you card.

As for the book? It’s stashed in the dark recesses of my garage.

Lesson: It’s the thought that counts. No matter where that thought comes from, it counts. Also, always read book jacket summaries. Always.