I really, really, really hate Christmas shopping. I used to like it a lot better before “The Man” insisted I start worrying about Christmas at the end of October. It’s like the corpse of Halloween is still warm before society remarries Christmas. It’s horrible. Anyways, despite me hating Christmas shopping, I like to think that I am a pretty good present buyer, some people do not have this gift and are terrible Christmas gift givers. As a general rule of thumb if you can’t figure out what the person wants, then just get them booze. Everyone loves booze….except maybe small children and recovering alcoholics. Last year I got a bottle of vodka and a box of chocolates from my boyfriends step brother and his girlfriend and it was goddamn delightful! So what I’m going to share with you guys here is some gifts that you should never, ever buy for someone and if you find out that a gift you bought for me is on this list then you need to return that shit and buy me booze. Or a Roomba. I really want to make my cat ride around on one while he wears a little cape. And if he doesn’t ride around on it then next year you guys can get me a new cat that DOES WHAT I TELL IT TO DO.
1. Digital Picture Frame
These things are seriously lame as hell. They scream “I know nothing about you but assume you like useless technical garbage” You know what an actual good present is? A photo frame. Even better would be a photo frame with a photo of you and the person who gave it to you. Or a photo of your friend naked if you’re into it, or maybe just a stranger naked.
Once in highschool I went to a girls house and she had a framed photo of the lead singer of The GooGoo Dolls on her dresser. I thought at first it was a picture of them together because she met him but it was just a magazine clipping put in a frame. It obviously creeped me right out because there is a fine line between being a super fan (posters on the wall) and being a psycho fan (framed photo on your dresser) where am I going with this rambling story? I would rather receive a framed photo of a random celebrity than a digital picture frame. They’re one of those things that seems cool at the time but quickly become more trouble than they’re worth. Much like a Palm Pilot or a hot girl with daddy issues.
So the deal is you either plug this bastard into the wall or it runs off batteries or something and it has a slide show of all the photos you have on the memory stick that’s stuck in the frame. I don’t know, I never really bothered with the mechanics of it. If the slideshow screensaver option on my computer has taught me anything it’s that an un monitored slide show of random photos can never be good. You will believe me the second a picture of you in a bra or someone barfing in a dumpster pops up on that frame while you’re having lunch with your parents. Plus it seems like a huge waste of energy, so I’m going to claim that’s why I hate it so much because being green is totally in right now. DIGITAL PICTURE FRAMES CAUSE GLOBAL WARMING
2. Any sort of singing Christmas toy
FFFUUU I hate these things beyond all reason. They always have these broke ass low budget toys around Valentines day as well and you can’t go down an aisle in Wal Mart without some jerk kid pushing all the buttons and then you have to listen to a stuffed Gorilla sing Wild Thing for 2 full minutes.
Christmas ones are way worse because people legit think this is a good present to give someone. I don’t understand the concept of giving Christmas ornaments or Christmas themed things on Christmas because the event is literally over the day you open your presents. It’s like Oh cool you got me an animatronic Snowman that plays a shitty digital MIDI file version of Jingle Bells over the deafening sound of its mechanical joints rubbing together, I’ll be sure to put this on my coffee table for another 12 hours before throwing it in the bottom of a Rubbermaid tub where it will sit in my crawlspace until next year.
It’s like some bizarre plot from “the man” making us celebrate Christmas earlier and earlier, it’s like a neverending cycle of buying Christmas presents to celebrate Christmas even though Christmas is over but you can use it for next year which is only 12 months away so you better stock up on Christmas stuff! CHRISTMAS!!!!11 This is some conspiracy bullshit! Someone call Jack Ruby!
I know what you’re thinking: “hey, that’s a sweet present, what the hell is your problem?” Well yes, you are right it is a sweet present but only if you asked for it. I should rephrase that and say if you are a grown adult and you didn’t ask for one. Kids would like to get this without asking for it because they don’t yet feel out of shape 60% of the day.
Getting this present unsolicited is the worst thing that could ever happen to you. Picture it: you’re opening presents one handed because your other hand is busy shoving sugar cookies in your mouth and you crack open the Wii Fit box. You freeze and stop chewing, bits of cookie falling over the box. You look up and lock eyes with person who bought it for you. They wear a smug smile thinking they got you the best present all year. You stare at them suddenly very aware that they think you’re enormous.
This isn’t a scenario that happened to me because I’m a “legit” gamer (nerd) so I own a PS3 and prefer to spend my time screaming at Kratos then doing yoga on a plastic board. But I do know people who own this and it seems sort of fun, but again would be a total slap in the face if you didn’t ask for it. This is also going to go in the category of “seems fun at first” because I’m sure a lot of people use this thing like 4 times and then never again, much like most board games and gym memberships.
4. A stranger bitch version of what you actually wanted
I remember when I was like 10 I got an action figure that was super lame. It was some D-List XMen and I was like “what am I supposed to do with this jerk?” I got it from my Grandma, so I couldn’t be mad because even though I was a jerky 10 year old kid I knew that she had tried her best and how the hell is she supposed to know that there is an XMen Hierarchy (Wolverine is the king, Jubilee and Banshee are the court jesters) so I just told her thank you and gave her a hug because even though I didn’t love that horrible toy, I still loved my Grandma.
Anyways that was my first brush with the dreaded Christmas present that you get almost every year: a slightly worse version of what you really wanted.Sometimes there is an extreme case of an insane Asian bootleg like that amazing President Sonic Potter backpack up there, but usually they’re just slightly off. I used to work in a CD and Dvd store and Grandmas and clueless parents would come in all the time and come to the till with a bunk version of what I know their kid actually wanted, like they meant to buy Planet Earth but came up to the till with a rip off version called Earth: our planet, or they went to buy Cars but instead came up with The Cars: an animated adventure that was puked out by some Taiwanese company, you know what I’m talking about.
I would always panic and be like NONO THIS ISN’T WHAT THEY WANTED!! And almost always the parent would be like OH GOD THANK YOU FOR TELLING ME! But sometimes they wouldn’t believe me and I was so glad I wasn’t there on Christmas morning when their kid opened up his copy of Transmorphers or Harvey Potts and the cavern of mysteries.
This phenomenon can also translate into clothing, we’ve all seen kids walking around with those rip off Adidas jackets with two stripes. I feel for those children. Not enough to do anything but elbow the person next to me and say “hey check out the goon in the rip off Adidas” I hope Santa doesn’t repay my attitude by giving me coal, or it’s off brand Swedish equivalent: Koal