Read this first! A 30-second summary of me and this blog!

Hey everyone,

My name is Neil Pasricha and here’s me in 30 seconds!

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#352 Successfully regifting a present to someone who actually wants it

What do cellophane-wrapped mugs of mini candy canes, Season 3 of Mr. Belvedere on DVD, and framed photos of someone else’s dog have in common?

They’re just what we never wanted.

But that’s okay, that’s okay — because someone else might! Yes, now it’s time for some Regifting Magic, people. It’s time to regift like you’ve never regifted before. You’re a regifting machine if you follow these three steps to freedom:

1. Smile sweetly. Never look a gift horse in the mouth. Instead, look them in the eyes while saying thank you over and over. You may also find it helpful to practice these lines (for these items): “I’ve been meaning to try that place!” (gift card to Taco Bell), “How did you know I liked puke green!” (puke green sweater), and “It’s perfect, it’s perfect — honestly, how have I even been wearing shoes all these years!?” (shoehorn)

2. Add it to your gifts-to-give pile. When you get home make sure to write a thank-you card promptly and then toss the gift in the closet with your motorized self-twirling spaghetti fork, Streetlamps of the World page-a-day calendar, and novelty light-up ceramic angel. Let your inventory bulk up a bit so you’ve got good regift variety and be sure to hide the stash from future regiftees.

3. Annnnnnd… regift! This is the toughest step because you only truly succeed in regifting when you’re about 80-90% sure the regiftee will love the present. After all, there’s nothing wrong with gift cards to Taco Bell and light-up ceramic angels. It’s just that one goes to your backwards-cap skateboarding rascal of a little cousin and the other goes to your Grandma who loves tacos.

AWESOME!

Photos from: here and here

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#354 When the neighbor shovels your tiny little patch of the sidewalk

Sidewalks bring us together.

Fences split yards, lawns divide homes, and invisible property lines are scribbled on dusty blueprints in city archives. But somehow those little strips of concrete tie us all together and connect the dots between our lives.

It’s a beautiful moment when a friendly neighbor shovels the snow off of your walk after a winter snowstorm. Swaddled in snow-packed mitts, sweaty scarves, and salty boots, they’re just lending a helping hand of kindness and some friendly season’s greetings.

AWESOME!

Photo from: here

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#355 Construction cranes with Christmas lights on them

They’re not selling anything.

Nope, Christmas lights on construction cranes just smile down on the city and cover us all in a warm and festive light. Flickering in the sky, flashing way up high, they hug us all together in a friendly yellow glow.

On top of that, it’s sort of fun thinking about how they got there too. Doesn’t it seem kind of dangerous? It’s like someone risked their lives just putting up lights for the people.

Thanks Spiderman!

AWESOME!

Photo from: here

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#356 Wearing your boyfriend’s sweatshirt and it smells like them

Ripped sleeves, tattered collars, and faded prints tossed in crumpled piles on the bedroom floor hold meaningful memories of tender touches. Twisting on the couch for a movie, stirring over the stove at dinner, or napping together in the park … all come together to fan the flames of your heart.

Tossing on your boyfriend’s baggy sweatshirt feels like you’re giving them a hug.

Close your eyes and smell the love.

AWESOME!

Photo from: here

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#357 When that baby screaming on your flight finally stops

Look, I love babies.

Sure, we laugh, high five, sing songs, and play cars. We talk, read books, dream dreams, and stare at stars.

But one thing we agree to disagree on is proper behavior on overnight transatlantic flights. Me, I like sleeping. Them, they like screaming for hours on the lap beside me.

Generally when this happens all I can do is focus all my energy on sending silent signals to their brain and hoping my message finally gets through.

Stop crying stop crying stop crying stop crying stop crying.

AWESOME!

Photo from: here and here

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#359 The wind

I’m listening to the wind, to the wind at my soul.

Where it comes from, where it goes, well … who really knows.

All I know is that the wind is a great part of life for a few big reasons:

1. Helps plants make love. Roots twist and tie bushes and trees into forest floors preventing them from spreading their seeds too far. Thankfully the wind blows by to carry maple keys and pollen into new spaces and new places. Next time you glance at fields of pretty flowers besides the highway or see a spread of tall trees over the horizon… well, just remember who helped make it all happen.

2. Breezy comfort. When I lived in Boston our creaky apartment turned into a steamy sauna in the summer. It felt like an oven with lots of summer sun and no A/C. Well, my roommate Joey and I had no choice but to lie on sweaty couches eating popsicles in our underwear while praying for cool breezes to float through to give us a few moments of bliss. Yes, when you score a cool breeze on a hot day, when you land a warm gust on a chilly one, always remember to give thanks.

3. Come sail away. Sailors and windsurfers love the breezy push of wind over the glittery ocean water, kids love flying kites in the park, and everyone loves windmills spinning to grind out energy jolts and keep our Dutch fields picturesque.

Yes, when the wind whips through your body, when it whips through your soul, sometimes you feel that supernatural sense of being at one with nature, at one with the world, and at one on the planet. Wind is a constant that gives comfort because it’s invisible but always there. Wind has blown sand across deserts and ripples across oceans for millions of years… so when those free and easy breezes whisper across your face just remember to close your eyes… and just remember to enjoy a tiny little moment of

AWESOME!

Photos from: here, here, and here

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#361 The first snowfall of the winter

Crystal flakes form in space before floating down from cloudy skies.

Soon blankets of white coat sidewalks like icing and frosty corners freeze in shady yards by the shed. Scarves twist tightly around necks, noses sniffle and turn red, and everyone walks the streets with wide eyes and snowy lashes. Boots slip and slide on the sidewalk, mittens swipe seats in the park, and branches glow under a silent new moonlit world.

Sometimes the first snowfall gets your bones excited about everything the season brings — family moments, quiet times, holiday shopping, and grandma’s cooking. It’s a symbol of venturing out into a new world and bunkering into an old one.

When the snow flies down for the first time everything slows down around you and nostalgia bombs burst in your brain … of slip-sliding to school on sidewalks, slushy snowball fights in the park, and sticky mittens rolling snowmen on the front lawn…

AWESOME!

Photos from: here and here

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