Author Topic: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)  (Read 6714 times)

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NyaChan

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2013, 11:44:33 PM »
I think it can be an awesome gift for some people, but for some people it could be the equivalent to giving someone a pet for a gift without knowing that the recipient is okay with it.  Preparing live lobster can be a burden, not a gift for some, and especially so when there is no prior notice. 

ygerna

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #16 on: June 05, 2013, 11:58:11 PM »
Once, my parents decided to surprise my grandparents by having an order of live lobsters arrive on the same day they (my parents) did. The thinking was that it would make a nice dinner when the family gathered that night. There was a mix-up (of course!) and the lobsters arrived a day before my parents! My mom got a confused phone call and it's become a great story.

jedikaiti

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #17 on: June 06, 2013, 12:23:58 AM »
Hubby is a chef, and he and I got the BIGGEST laugh reading that article. No the dilemma, so much, as the writing style. That was BRILLIANT.

DH has assured me, however, that if anyone is ever so generously rude as to spring live lobsters on us, he has no problem dispatching them in the most delicious manner.
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kareng57

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #18 on: June 06, 2013, 12:38:01 AM »
Hubby is a chef, and he and I got the BIGGEST laugh reading that article. No the dilemma, so much, as the writing style. That was BRILLIANT.

DH has assured me, however, that if anyone is ever so generously rude as to spring live lobsters on us, he has no problem dispatching them in the most delicious manner.


Late Dh was certainly not a chef, but he grew up taking vacations on the North Atlantic coast, where live lobster was pretty plentiful for his camping family.  So he had no qualms about cooking them "properly" (meaning live, although apparently most fishmongers would kill them ahead of time for any customers who insisted).

I was kind of squeamish but it was generally a non-issue anyway, since live lobster is awfully expensive here.  However, there are exceptions - about 25 years ago a local supermarket chain would sell lobster, once a year, at a very good price.  So, Dh bought a couple of them.  He was preparing them in the kitchen sink, under the watchful eye of our 1 1/2 year old toddler, who was very intrigued.  Toddler was convinced that one of them was "waving" at him, so Dh gave it to him and told him "go show Mommy!".  He did just that, walking into the room where I was feeding 4 month old DS #2, wearing a big grin and carrying a crustacean with leg bands.......

I screamed.  Honestly, I'm not high-strung at all, but there are exceptions...I'd had DS #2 on the change-table and I was shaking like an earthquake trying to hold onto him and cursing Dh to kingdom-come.

Dh paid for a babysitter and took me to a very nice restaurant the next night.

DottyG

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #19 on: June 06, 2013, 02:18:51 AM »
For those who are nervous about it:

Quote
In fact, research indicates the lobster has no central nervous system or cerebral cortex to register stimuli, thus the creature mostly likely can feel no pain


crella

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #20 on: June 06, 2013, 03:03:09 AM »
We had a period in the late 80s when live gifts were in. Japanese summer (and winter) gift giving has trends....one year we'll get enough butter and cheese for a small boarding house, the next year we get 20 little hams, 100 cans of juice....the live gift year we had live shrimp *sproing*ing out of the styrofoam container (they're packed in sawdust), crabs that my son wanted to take to the sea and let go, and an octopus that made a break for it and schlop-schlepped across the counter. Enough people must have complained, we never had another live gift again.

I can't stand throwing lobster into the pot, I put them in the freezer (Fire or ice?) then into the pot. I don't know...people who freeze to death seem to drift off to sleep, so I thought that might be better :)

Venus193

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2013, 07:08:44 AM »
www.lobstergram.com - I've both sent and received live lobsters.  And yes, in both cases they were appreciated.  It's a "know your audience" thing, though - my parents sent us some on our first anniversary, knowing that we love to cook and that (at the time) we didn't have the budget for something like that normally.  And I sent them some on their 25th anniversary, but in that case my sister was visiting them and was able to arrange things so they didn't have other dinner plans (and so she could leave and go see a movie so they could have a romantic evening cooking).

No problem with this here, obviously  :)

I completely agree; it's "know your audience."

Anyone is welcome to send me lobsters!

Itza

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery
« Reply #22 on: June 06, 2013, 08:12:22 AM »
Has anyone ever heard of Dave Berry?

Jillian Keenan, the writer of this article, fits the style of Dave Berry's writing to the "T".


She also refers to her husband as David in the article. She could be married to him  :)




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Jones

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #23 on: June 06, 2013, 08:18:27 AM »
I do hope no one sends me a lobster, or crab, or shrimp or nearly anything from the ocean, alive OR dead. I realize that a lot of people love seafood but the thought of it really grosses me out. I think it's due to a shellfish allergy (that I may have, very recently, outgrown--no reaction at last cross contamination), that my childhood brain associated all creatures of similar build with the reaction.

So, y'all can have my share. ;D

lowspark

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery
« Reply #24 on: June 06, 2013, 08:51:07 AM »
I am kind of doubtful the story was 100% genuine.  It reminded me quite a bit of the scene in Annie Hall.

This is exactly what I thought. Yeah, I appreciate the humor, but I guess I just didn't think it was that funny. The idea of panicking and calling friends, etc. before they even opened the box just strikes me as silly.

One thing the essay never touchs on is who sent the lobsters. Because the re-lationship between the sender and the receiver could make a world of difference in how the receiver sees the gift.

As far as cooking live lobsters, I would have no problem throwing them into the boiling pot and I do happen to have a fairly large stock pot, but how many people do? It's not exactly the most common thing to have a huge stock pot in your kitchen.

Harriet Jones

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery
« Reply #25 on: June 06, 2013, 09:05:54 AM »
Has anyone ever heard of Dave Berry?

Jillian Keenan, the writer of this article, fits the style of Dave Berry's writing to the "T".


She also refers to her husband as David in the article. She could be married to him  :)

According to wikipedia, Dave Barry's current wife's name is Michelle  ;)

demarco

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #26 on: June 06, 2013, 11:31:21 AM »
My brother sent DH  and me live lobsters for Christmas a couple of years ago.  We eat lobster. We like lobster. We'd never cooked lobster and had never planned to.

The shipping company left them on our door mat unannounced.  (It is a really good thing we hadn't gone away for a few days or the local raccoons would have had a banquet.) I could hear them rustling inside the box and it did freak me out, even though I knew what they were.  I put the box in the back yard until DH came home so we could face the situation together.  We had a big pot so the cooking part went pretty well.  They were good.  They made a nice Christmas Eve dinner but we both fervently hoped my brother wouldn't send us any again. 

Sure enough, next year there was another box of lobsters on the door mat.  I discovered that one of them wasn't moving.  The instructions that came with them said you could still eat them if they're DOA.  I was skeptical.   This time, DH wasn't coming home for several hours so I put both of them in the vegetable crisper. When I opened the 'fridge later I almost jumped out of my skin when I heard the rustling coming from the crisper because I had forgotten they were in there. DH came home and proclaimed that the seemingly lifeless lobster smelled OK so we cooked them both, ate them, and survived, again, hoping never to see another lobster at our door. 

Both times, I sent my brother an appropriate thank note and restrained myself from adding, "pa-leeeeeeze don't do it again!" ( Is there a polite way of saying this?)

I guess the upshot of this story is that even for people who like lobster a gift like this can be a little creepy and somewhat of a burden.  It is definitely a know your recipient kind of thing.




artk2002

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #27 on: June 06, 2013, 11:58:26 AM »
Both times, I sent my brother an appropriate thank note and restrained myself from adding, "pa-leeeeeeze don't do it again!" ( Is there a polite way of saying this?)

Yes. "While we appreciate the gift, live lobsters really aren't our style." By thanking him and not telling him that you don't want any more, you implicitly told him that the gift was fine and that you did want more.

As you can tell, I'm not of the mindset that a recipient can say nothing about a gift. If the recipient doesn't like or can't use a gift, then I see it as a courtesy to tell the giver that, so that they don't waste their time getting a bad gift. To me, a gift is only good if both the giver and recipient are happy with it. As a giver, I'd much rather hear that someone didn't like the gift; I'd be mortified if I found out, years later, that I had been giving gifts that really weren't appreciated.
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Pen^2

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #28 on: June 06, 2013, 12:53:44 PM »
I guess the upshot of this story is that even for people who like lobster a gift like this can be a little creepy and somewhat of a burden.  It is definitely a know your recipient kind of thing.

With any gift, if it is going to require effort on behalf of the receiver to use or prepare, then you really do need to know the person well. I feel that most people wouldn't be thrilled with a surprise gift of live lobsters.

I had a vaguely similar experience once. DH and I, while on our honeymoon, asked a friend to look after our indoors cat. He likes pets and was very happy, and we left very simple instructions that anyone could follow. Unfortunately, our cat is very good at hide-and-seek, and when he couldn't find her hiding in the gap between the top of the curtains and the window, he thought she had escaped and become lost. After looking for her frantically (and being unable to contact us since we were in a foreign country without phone coverage), he started to accept that maybe the cat was gone, and began thinking of what he could do to make it up to us. His solution? Buy us a new pet.

He was about to purchase a dog when DH happened to check his Facebook (we were on holiday, so it was very fortunate that one of the two times he checked Facebook was this). A mutual friend mentioned that our cat-sitter was at the pet shop buying us a surprise puppy.

DH is allergic to dogs. And I don't think it needs to be said that you should never buy someone a pet (or anything else needing similar responsibilities and commitment) without okaying it with them first. We very narrowly managed to stop anything being bought, and the cat was found later that evening. It was a very stressful few hours, but fortunately nothing more.

I think gifts like these are like marriage proposals: you might not tell them explicitly what's coming beforehand, but if it's anything involving time and effort, then you should know them well enough and have had conversations confirming things for you beforehand.

stitchygreyanonymouse

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Re: Rude gift(?) - unexpected live lobster delivery (follow up post 12)
« Reply #29 on: June 06, 2013, 01:10:52 PM »
I agree with Pen^2. Lobsters aside, you should know your recipient for anything that requires effort on their part.

Two instances come to mind for me:
In college, I complained about the lack of good hummus available, so my friend decided to ship me some from home. He did the whole box with dry-ice thing, but didn't take into account that boxes weren't just delivered to my doorstep, and just because it is delivered doesn’t mean it was to me, since the mail center could also sign for it at my college. He also decided it should be a surprise, so didn't tell me until after he had assumed I’d picked it up (based on the shipment delivery confirmation). Because of the college’s schedule and my own, I couldn't get my box from the mail center until almost 24 hours after it was delivered—far beyond when the hummus would have been safe to eat (judging by the room-temperature interior, since the dry ice was gone).

Another time, a friend shipped some wine to me. Now, I’m not one to turn down good wine, but had he mentioned that he was shipping it to me before the fact, I could have instructed him to ship it to my work. Instead, I was incredibly lucky to run into the mail carrier when I went home on lunch so that I could sign for the wine (because you need a signature for alcohol, I guess). That was after having to spend over 15 min on the phone trying to find out whether I could change the shipping address (no) after getting a failed delivery tag on my door. Had I not happened to run into the delivery person, it would have been returned to sender. There's no way I was going to take time off work to sit home waiting for a couple of bottles of surprise wine.

Had either of these shipments been something *live*, I would have been very upset with the lack of foresight on my friends’ part.