Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What NOT to buy

Photo: Flickr, via Kelvin55

As Christmastime, this blessed holiday that hardly anyone the world over knows about, approaches I feel inundated with gift GIVING guides. How wonderful! When I have to give a gift, as a sign of love, friendship, and good will to someone about whom I know absolutely nothing, it's helpful to have a generic guide. But what if the store I go to doesn't have the things ON the list? What happens if I have to go rogue and make my own choice?

Shouldn't there be a handy list of things NOT to buy people?

There is. And this is it. While many of the items I'm about to list might be very important sometimes, to some people, they are not appropriate Christmas gifts. (Christmas, for those who've never heard of it, is when Jesus comes back from the dead to give all the good girls and boys presents.)

Bad gift guide:

1- Water softener. It doesn't matter how big the bag is, it's not a Christmas gift!
2- Light bulbs...unless they're incandescent, because those are going to have a monster appreciation value in a few years when we all have to "go green."
3- Chairs. These are gifts we buy for ourselves. This is relatively self-explanatory.
4- Nude photos of others. If you have some sort of pre-arrangement in place, then I'm not here to step on anyone's toes (or anything else for that matter) but failing a locked in agreement, it's better to not give these. It kind of goes back to the Victorian days.
5- An empty wallet. And I feel strongly about this. If you *must* give the gift of a wallet, then the minimum contribution inside is $20...and not in scratch-off lottery tickets. CASH. Twenty in CASH.
6- Blocks of cheese or assorted meats. Sure we all love meat and cheese, we're not (all) dead inside; however Christmas is a special time and gift cheese doesn't come in block form. It's exceedingly moldy, and gift meat is...well, that's for a different type of blog altogether. Just save yourself the drama and avoid cheese and meat.

7- Your collection of vintage friendship bracelets. Now of course, here I'm just looking out for you and the investment in your future. I admire your willingness to give SO freely of yourself and your possessions, but under no circumstance is it appropriate to give away something that may have Sotheby's value someday. You'll thank me later.

That's seven. I'm all done. 

You can probably figure out from here what to get or not get for the stranger on your list. So happy holiday (Christmas holiday and no other, like Hanukkah which starts today and has EIGHT days of giving, so keep this handy if you're Jewish!)...and maybe I'll be all riled up about something on Friday. There's really no way to know.

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