Crazy gifts: When Barack Obama got crocodile insurance as a gift

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Posted On March 05, 2014 / Posted In Believe it or not / Tagged unbelievable gifts, crazy gifts

You know how I always write about what to gift? Well, not today. Today, I'm going to entertain you with some crazy gift ideas you might want to avoid giving anyone,let alone  the head of a country.

Here's a conversation that happened somewhere, at some point in time leading to some crazy gifts.

A: Hey, you know Obama’s visiting us.
B: Obama? You mean the US president?
A: Yes. We should give him something…a nice gift.
B: But what? I’m sure he has everything a man could wish for.
A: I know. Let’s give him crocodile insurance!

Crocodile insurance:This is such a weird gift to give.  Australia’s Northern Territory Chief Minister, Paul Henderson, apparently gifted Obama a $50,000 insurance policy to be used if he was ever attacked by a crocodile. Obama was being polite when he called it “the most unique gift I’ve received as president.” The only people I can think of who would find such a gift useful are the adventurous folks from The National Geographic and Animal Planet.

A donkey: I have nothing personal against donkeys. They’re just not great gift material are they? Puppies yes, kittens sure. Maybe even a panda or two. But donkeys? The town of Turbaco, Colombia wanted to give Obama a special gift: a young donkey named Demo which the President politely declined.

Portrait rugs: Yes, such a thing exists as former American President, Bill Clinton found out. Sure, they may be a work of art but think of this — how would you feel if you saw your face being trampled upon day in and day out? Not good I suspect. Unless you decide to hang it up on the wall. 

On a side note, you’re probably wondering what Obama does with all the gifts he receives, good or otherwise. Well, he can only keep those gifts that cost below $350. Any gift that costs more than that either goes to the National Archives or is donated to charity (now do you see why crocodile insurance is such a terrible gift? It can’t even be donated).  If the president wants to keep any of the gifts, he has to buy it at market value.

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Sarita Rajiv is a writer, gifting specialist and founder of The Orange Gift Bag. She’s on a mission to uncover the ‘best gifts after love’. When she isn’t dreaming up unique gift ideas, she writes for The Copenhagen Post and The National Geographic Traveller India among others.

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