One of our family Christmas traditions when we were young was that the siblings exchanged their gifts to each other on Christmas Eve. One Christmas when I was in college, so I was probably 19 or 20, and Bill was four or five, he gave me a very interesting gift.
When it was Bill’s turn to give out his presents he gave me a thin package about 12 inches long. I unwrapped it and found a clear, flat piece of plastic. One side was a standard 12-inch ruler and the other edge was curved on one side and flat on the other.
I looked at it with curiosity, not immediately exactly sure what it was.
Bill beamed at me, “Do you like it?”
“Oh yeah,” I answered, hiding my confusion, “this is really great! I can’t wait to use it.”
His smile got even brighter, “What is it?”
I, and all the rest of the family burst into laughter. Fortunately, I had just set the item down on the wrapping paper and realized that it was a combination ruler/magnifier, something designed for older people to read small text.
I explained to Bill how it worked and we examined a few books and other objects with it. He found it fascinating and played with it a great deal that evening. Of course, when he got his presents from Santa the next morning it was back in my possession.
I actually found this gift to be pretty useful. As I recall, I kept it with my school supplies and used it to read equations in my textbooks.