For our Holiday parties at PADT, we generally have over 50 employees, so a traditional secret Santa gift exchange takes too long. At some point, we downloaded a right-left gift exchange story from the internet, and it was a big hit. When we ran out of stories on the internet, we started writing our own, usually in some sort of over-the-top style.
How Does The Gift Exchange Work?
Everyone gets the gift they brought and forms a big circle in the middle of the room. Someone with a strong voice (or a microphone) reads the story, and every time the word LEFT is read, everyone passes the package they have to the left. Every time the word RIGHT is read, everyone passes the package they have to their right. You should pause a bit at each LEFT/RIGHT to give people a chance to pass. Once the story is over, you end up with the gift you are holding.
You Can Find Previous Gift Exchange Stories Here:
These stories are for everyone’s use, free, and with no strings attached. So please copy and paste the text into your word processor and enjoy. And if it all goes well, please share a picture with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This year we have a cautionary fairy tale. Here is how it works.
The Wooden Horse
In a village sitting on the LEFT bank of the river Dreamwald, there is a good and generous family, the LEFTmulds. The father is the last barrel wRIGHT LEFT in the duchy of Cornwil-o-Day-Queffon. He has a wife, two gorgeous twin daughters, and a young son named… Albert. Albert was willful and spoiled. He thought he was always RIGHT, and he always wanted what he wanted RIGHT now.
One day, about RIGHT when the cows needed to come in from pasture, Albert stormed into his father’s workshop, walked RIGHT up to his father, and said, “You have LEFT me no choice but to go on strike. I demand you make me a wooden horse toy RIGHT now.”
“Albert,” his father said, “You LEFT the door open. Please close it.”
Albert replied: “I don’t care if I LEFT the door open, you promised me a horse, and I want it now.“
His father said, “I told you when you clean the RIGHT side of the barn, and there is no mud LEFT on the floor, and there is no hay LEFT outside, I will give you your horse.”
“I hate you! I wish you had LEFT me with the stork! I’m leaving RIGHT now.”
And with that, he stormed out. All his father said was, “You still LEFT the door open, my son. Something is not… correct with you.”
Albert ran from the village. RIGHT past the mill, RIGHT past the well, and RIGHT out the gate into the dark and ominous Dreamwald forest. He soon slowed, for the run had LEFT him out of breath. But he kept walking and walking. Presently he noticed an old woman in black standing RIGHT in the middle of the path.
He walked RIGHT up to her and said, “Excuse me old woman, but you are in my way. I would ask that you step aside RIGHT now.”
The old woman peered from beneath her hood and said, “I’m waiting for you Albert. You LEFT a wish at the wishing stone last night. I’m here to make it RIGHT.”
“You have my wooden horse?” Albert asked, having LEFT off the idea of getting past this woman.
“I do, but you must promise to give me whatever I want. Promise RIGHT now. “
He was LEFT with no choice and said, “I promise.”
There was a boom and a crash. RIGHT next to Albert, there was a gorgeous wooden horse. It LEFT him breathless, and for the first time in his life, something LEFT him speechless as well. It was more than he had hoped for.
“Is it all RIGHT?” asked the old crow.
“Oh yes,” he replied. “It is defiantly all RIGHT.
And then she began to cackle. The noise LEFT his ears ringing. It was so loud. And then POOF, Albert was no longer in the woods. He was inside a hut, tied RIGHT to a spit, LEFT spinning over an open fire.
The old woman continued to cackle as she pinched his LEFT arm and licked her lips.
He screamed, “Oh no! This is not RIGHT! In fairy tales, the little child outsmarts the old witch. You have not LEFT me a chance even to try!”
“You looked so tasty, I didn’t think it was RIGHT to play that silly old game. I decided to just put you RIGHT on the spit and roast you RIGHT away.”
Albert began to sob as the heat of the flames became more and more uncomfortable. He was LEFT with a feeling of utter despair.
Then, to his LEFT, he heard the sound of sleigh bells and the stomping of many animals. One of the hut doors, the one on the LEFT, opened up, and a man in a big red suit stepped inside and pointed at the old lady.
He said, “Esmerelda! You have LEFT me no choice. Yes, this boy is naughty, but you are worse. You have no RIGHT to cook him, no matter how selfish and lazy he is!”
He lifted a staff in his RIGHT hand and brought it down with a thud on the ground. A blinding flash of light filled the hut, and then snow began to fall RIGHT from the ceiling. Big, wet flakes fell RIGHT onto the witch and quickly covered her, freezing her RIGHT where she stood. The snow also fell RIGHT on the fire, till there were no flames LEFT.
Albert freed his RIGHT hand, then his RIGHT ankle, and then untied his… other arm and leg.
“Thank you, Santa! I thought I was LEFT for dead!”
As the usually jolly old man walked to the other door in the hut, the RIGHT door, he turned and said. “Don’t thank me, little boy. Thank your good parents and sisters. When you LEFT them, you LEFT them heartbroken, and they asked for my help. So I came RIGHT away and did what I could. Let this be a lesson to you. You need to learn wrong from RIGHT!”
And with that, he LEFT the hut, jumped into his sleigh, flew away, and LEFT Albert with nothing but his thoughts. And that is how an evil witch was put to RIGHTs, and a selfish little boy learned that with the true spirit of Christmas, he might live happily ever after.