Friday, December 21, 2012

Last Minute Christmas Present Ideas

I'm sure many of you are last-minute Christmas shoppers, much like my own brother who is known for going shopping for all of us on the afternoon of Christmas Eve and somehow miraculously comes back with genuinely awesome gifts (enough of the time anyway), and since a couple of you Tweeted me @vixoen requesting suggestions, I thought I'd help anyone who is still looking for presents whether in town or online for siblings or a girl/boyfriend.

Generic presents that you should absolutely avoid unless you need something RIGHT FUCKING NOW to give your great aunt or second cousin you know absolutely nothing about, in which case it's fine because what the hell else can you do
Bath salts, bubble bath, lotion, or pretty much anything from Bath & Body Works
Scented candle

My go-to awesome places to go shopping
Liquor store - at this time of year liquor stores of full of nice gift boxes of liquor, like Maker's Mark bourbon with two highball glasses. - fun quirky tshirts and desk stuff, good for someone to have at their desks to play with - fun, quirky t-shirts. I personally own the Scrabble "Triple Nerd Score" and "What the Frak" t-shirts.
Half-Price Books, or any used bookstore - find a book that is perfect for the specific person you're shopping for. That does not necessarily mean they will like YOUR favorite books. Although if they've never read Harry Potter, I'd say the first book is a safe bet. Go hardback.

Gift ideas for most (some of which are more appropriate for a girl/boyfriend than your sister)
Craft beers - go to a liquor store and get several either local or Belgian beers, such as Duvel or Chimay. I also personally recommend Rogue.
Mix CD - cliche, yes, but still kind of awesome, especially if you know your music and can introduce them to some new stuff they'll like and would never otherwise hear on their own
Magazine subscription - New Yorker, Maxim, Wired, How it Works, Bust
Baked goods - see explanation below
Year subscription to Netflix or Hulu Plus. Especially if you're sick of giving out your password and finding all sorts of weird shit pop up in your queue.

Gifts for someone you are or hope to be sleeping with

A giant box of condoms
A giant box of novelty condoms
Vibrator or anything from an adult toy store
Perfume - can be very hit or miss, so get a small bottle or rollerball version. The ones I wear all the time are Hanae Mori (my favorite of ten years), Vanille Abricot by Comptoir Sud Pacifique, and the classic J'adore by Christian Dior. All three get me compliments by dates and friends alike.
Coupons for crazy kinky sex - yes, you SHOULD include things you normally find "icky" or "immoral." THOSE ARE THE FUNNEST THINGS TO DO

If you're broke
In my not-so-humble opinion, the key to finding an awesome gift for someone is to come up with something specific to them. The thought really does count more than the amount spent. The example I often give is when BF, my live-in boyfriend of years ago who helped me start OEN, bought me a $500 day at a fancy spa for my birthday. It was nice and everything, but NOT my thing. If he were willing to spend such an absurd amount of money on me, I would have preferred at the time that he put it toward buying me a laptop. Meanwhile, one of my dearest friends Barbie bought me a pair of Wonder Woman underwear which couldn't have cost more than $15. IT WAS AWESOME. One pair of super cute and Vix-appropriate cartoon superhero underwear was ten times better than a day at a spa, in my opinion. KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE.

Or BAKE something. Your brother loves chocolate? Bake him some pimped out chocolate chip cookies that will ruin all other chocolate chip cookies for him for life, such as chocolate chocolate chip cookies or what I call Triple Threat, peanut butter chocolate chip oatmeal cookies. My coworkers used to beg me to make these constantly.

Better yet, MAKE something. Since my barely-self-employed ass is broke during my slow season aka now, I'm making acrylic paintings for my parents and brother. All of them have gone on some amazing trips in the last year, so I asked each of them to pick out their favorite photo, and I'm painting it on a big canvas. Way cooler than enlarging a photo.

If you're not artsy, that's fine, what are your talents? If you have a great voice, sing them their favorite song. Cliche perhaps, but who gives a fuck? Even better, WRITE them a song, and then sing it. Or sing one of my jacked up Christmas songs here on the blog and make everyone laugh by being a huge ham while you sing it. Can't sing? Write a funny or moving story about something the two of you shared.

So what if you can't make or do anything or spend any money. My dad got me into "Star Trek" when I was young, and at Thanksgiving I was shocked to find he's never seen "Battlestar Galactica." Since he doesn't do the torrent thing, I downloaded all the episodes of BSG so I can burn them to a DVD for him to watch on his own since he doesn't have Netflix, Hulu Plus, or Amazon Prime. Same with my cousin who loves "Scrubs," and my mother who loves "New Girl." I would do "Mythbusters" for my brother, but they're already on Netflix.

If you're lazy
Gift cards are your friend. You can buy them anywhere these days, including the grocery store. I recommend Best Buy, Target, Home Depot (for new home-owner, for example), even offer gift cards now.

If' you're really lazy
Put a bunch of cash in a card. If you're going to be this lazy, you have to put in a lot more money than you would if you had gone to the trouble to buy a gift card. Bonus points if you dress it up by doing origami with a fifty dollar bill or if you give them a bajillion singles and make a joke in the card about how you know where they'll be spending their evening and you thought you'd spare them the trouble of getting change.

I hope this was helpful. If you have some gift suggestions for fellow readers that I didn't think of, then please, by all means, post them in the comments. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good fuck!
xoxo Vix

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