Originally created 12/23/01

That's a wrap



A couple of snips, a few folds and some pieces of tape to keep it all together - what's so hard about wrapping a present?

For some men, it's a fate worse than death.

In a recent column, syndicated humorist Dave Barry bemoaned his inability to wrap a present and detailed his attempts to cover up his mistakes with tape and magic marker. Men, he concluded, are simply not built to wrap presents.

Brandon Haddock, a staff writer for The Augusta Chronicle, said he would rather unplug a toilet than wrap a present.

"I'd rather do anything than wrap a present," he said.

Mr. Haddock was the guinea pig for The Chronicle's step-by-step gift-wrap guide. Before learning the steps, he attempted to wrap a gift for his wife, April, on his own. The result was serviceable, if a bit funny looking. His mistakes included leaving a pair of pants on the hanger when he put them in the box and wrapping the box right-side-up, so that the seam of the wrapping paper, which should be on the bottom of the box, was on the top. He also folded the flaps of paper on the ends in the wrong order, so they pointed up instead of down.

A hack-and-slash job on the ends of the wrapping paper, to trim off excess, was done after the box was already half-wrapped, and the ragged edges were a problem solved with lots of tape.

"There's no such thing as too much tape," he said.

The wrapping lesson improved his skills. He used some of what he learned to wrap six more presents at home.

"I got done much faster than I would have before," he said. "It's not my most hated chore anymore."

Reach Alisa DeMao at (706) 823-3223 or ademao@augustachronicle.com