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6 Days Ago   #1
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Question for native english speaker

Hi guys!

I've a small question for you people who are english native speaker (are as good as one!). How do you call it when for an event with gifts, let say Christmas, each people secretly pick the name of another person and has to buy the gift for this person ? The litteral translation from french would be "gifts pick" but I don't think this has the same meaning in english...

Thanks!

6 Days Ago - 1 Like   #2
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Traditionally, events like this are called "Secret Santa" during the Christmas season. There are probably other names used but this one is the most common name for this type of gift exchange in my part of the country. This is obviously a slang term and a direct translation to another language might sound strange. Sometimes, names are drawn out of a hat. I have been to other events where participants are asked to provide either a female or male gift, with no name attached.
6 Days Ago - 8 Likes   #3
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Yep, "Secret Santa" is what we call it here in the UK too

Personally, I think a better name for it would be "Everyone Gets What Nobody Wants" - but perhaps I just need to enter into the spirit of things a little more
6 Days Ago - 1 Like   #4
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Thank you guys! This is exactly what I was looking for!

QuoteOriginally posted by reeftool Quote
This is obviously a slang term and a direct translation to another language might sound strange.
Yeah, sometime popular expressions doesn't even make sense in different countries sharing the same language. Even formal expressions often have no meaning when directly translated. Or, even worse, have a meaning but a subtely different one. This reminds me the first time I received an email ending by "Yours truly", which could be interpreted in french by something like "Forever yours"! It's kind of confusing to see this at the end of a quotation from a sales rep you only met for a few minutes! I thought for a few seconds that she had a crush on me and not just simply being polite!

6 Days Ago - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
Yep, "Secret Santa" is what we call it here in the UK too

Personally, I think a better name for it would be "Everyone Gets What Nobody Wants" - but perhaps I just need to enter into the spirit of things a little more
I have been to several parties where that tradition was explicitly stated. It was called a “white elephant exchange “ (a White elephant being a slang term for some odd item you own that has no use at all...). Those can be fun parties!
6 Days Ago - 2 Likes   #6
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Some years ago our department where I worked had a Christmas party and names were drawn out of a hat. Specific rules were applied: No more that Cdn $5 to be spent. Some really creative things came out of this, and they were appropriate. My all time favourite -- I was a smoker at the time, and everyone knew I was a camera nut -- was an empty cigarette package with a Bic lighter glued to the side (built in flash!) and a beer glass glued to the front.
6 Days Ago   #7
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I've heard "Secret Santa" used from Ontario out to BC. These involved knowing who the recipient was in advance of buying the gift.

QuoteOriginally posted by RoxnDox Quote
I have been to several parties where that tradition was explicitly stated. It was called a “white elephant exchange “ (a White elephant being a slang term for some odd item you own that has no use at all...). Those can be fun parties!
I've been to one of these, but not by that name (I like it!). Everyone brought an item they didn't want, something new though. "Re-gifting" something you yourself had been given in the past was encouraged. Anyone stuck on what to bring could buy a gift under $10 or so, usually chocolate turned up. People took turns going up and selecting one of the wrapped items. It was a long standing party at this place, and a few of the items had made appearances for several years running.
6 Days Ago   #8
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Here in Australia, it's known as a Kris Kringle.

5 Days Ago   #9
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I was born and raised in the south and we were too poor to buy presents. J/K, we called it Secret Santa.
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I'll chime in and confirm that it's called "Secret Santa" here too.
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"Regalos Secretos" meaning Secret Gifting here
5 Days Ago   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by BrianR Quote
I've heard "Secret Santa" used from Ontario out to BC. These involved knowing who the recipient was in advance of buying the gift.



I've been to one of these, but not by that name (I like it!). Everyone brought an item they didn't want, something new though. "Re-gifting" something you yourself had been given in the past was encouraged. Anyone stuck on what to bring could buy a gift under $10 or so, usually chocolate turned up. People took turns going up and selecting one of the wrapped items. It was a long standing party at this place, and a few of the items had made appearances for several years running.
Just make sure that when "re-gifting", the person who originally gave you the gift doesn't get it back. It might cause problems.
The occasions when I have participated in "Secret Santa" gifting, it involved very inexpensive gifts and was all in fun. One gift in particular I remember was a large piece of chocolate made to look like a pile of dog poo. The card inside said "from someone who gives a ****" It was quite a conversation piece in the break room at work.
5 Days Ago - 3 Likes   #13
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The Platt Family Variation

I am one of five siblings now geographically spread. Our families get together about once a year around Christmas.
When you add kids and grandkids there's far too many people to buy decent gifts for all.
About twenty years ago my sister suggested the adults do "Chinese Christmas". It's not PC but something akin to "Chinese Fire Drill".
We have been doing this every year since.

Each participant brings an unmarked wrapped gift of some set approximate value.
All draw numbers. #1 chooses a wrapped gift. Once chosen any wrapped gift must be opened.
#2 can choose a wrapped gift or can steal #1's gift, who then chooses another wrapped gift.
Here's where it gets interesting. #3 can choose a wrapped gift or steal from #1 or #2,
who can then choose another wrapped gift or steal a gift if it's one that was not just stolen from them.

And on it goes through all number holders, until someone opens the last wrapped gift.
Afterwards trades are encouraged.

Choosing your own wrapped gift initially is forbidden but you are allowed - nay encouraged - to steal it back once you are stolen from - the fun is in the stealing!
It doesn't work for small groups, but with enough people - and enough alcohol - it can literally go on for hours.

Chris
4 Days Ago   #14
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http://people.smu.edu/rjepsen/chinesechristmas.html

We don't sit in a circle. We have considered limiting the number of times an item may be stolen.
If we did I suppose participants acting in collusion with others would become even more common.

Chris
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