By Juan Barquin
By Ciara LaVelle
By George Martinez
By Kat Bein
By Ciara LaVelle
By Travis Cohen
By Carlos Suarez De Jesus
By Monica McGivern
She was your former first lady and still is the mother of your kids. She haunts you, showing up in a bubble over your head like Gazoo in The Flintstones, telling you what's right and what's wrong. What is she, your mother? Sometimes she feels like your mother, which is why you divorced her in the first place. But there's no getting rid of her. After all, she does relieve you of parenting duties from Monday-Friday. That's no small shakes. Thank her with a set of Barbara Bush Inaugural Pearls, an exact replica of the former first lady's and now first mother's three-strand, hand-knotted pearl necklace, created just for Babs by Kenneth Jay Lane.
$125, George Bush Presidential Library Museum Store,
There's nothing worse than proselytizing, whether you're Kathie Lee Gifford hawking schmattes on QVC or Donna Karan singing the praises of Deepak Chopra. And religion--well, we won't go there. But what do you do with someone who looks to someone like Hannibal Lecter for inspiration and guidance? Call the police, maybe, but if he hasn't yet committed any crime, that's not gonna help. A gift certificate good for a session or two of Ashtanga Yoga could do the trick. Look at Madonna. Once she started practicing Ashtanga, her whole disposition--and accent--changed. Ohm, it's worth a shot.
$120 per 90 minute session,
Massage By Design,
100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305-532-3112
Newly Engaged Couple
Let their rich relatives buy them the Waterford Crystal. After all, they've only been dating for two weeks and barely know each other. Who knows if the engagement will last longer than their relationship? And did we mention that they're only 18? Ah, kids in love! Isn't it sweet? Commemorate their candy-coated commitment by giving them these limited- edition, reissued, retro bride and groom Pez dispensers. Two rolls of candy included, of course. Even better, it'll match the bride-to-be's gumball machine-bought engagement ring.
This person would rather sit home and watch Blind Date than go on an actual date. When you ask why the person is so averse to dating he/she points to Blind Date as his/her M.O. In fact, she or he'd rather endure a root canal than deal with the insipid first date small talk. Do you blame them? The last date this person went on probably took place when the Olsen Twins were still toddlers. Even they're dating now. Scary, huh? It's not easy, we know, but perhaps a little lunch "meeting" with a potential suitor would do the person good. It's just lunch, they say, and this way, it won't cut into the person's evening television line-up.
It's Just Lunch, 305-381-8888
Some kids like to cut their dolls' hair, but usually the poor thing ends up looking like Chucky. This kid is different, however. When he does his doll's hair, people turn around to look. They want to know who did that doll's hair and when they can make an appointment. In fact, his mother's best friend was tempted to dis her coveted appointment with Oribe in favor of the trim-happy tyke. He's got a gift and it can't be denied. So encourage his talent by getting him the Hair and Nail Craft Studio, a professional-looking stylist's box complete with all the necessary accessories and tools to perfect that fabulous look. Take a number, Trend Tracker!
$30, Toy Town,
260 Crandon Blvd., Key Biscayne, 305-361-5225
To this person, AOL really stands for Always On Line. What a box of chocolates was to Forrest Gump, the AOL Buddy List is to this person. And if life is like a great big buddy list, then the ability to take this buddy list wherever, whenever is absolute utopia. The AOL Mobile Communicator is the beeper of the 21st century, allowing email and instant messaging from anywhere, no modem, no DSL needed. Bliss, isn't it? As if cell phones in cars aren't bad enough, imagine what it's like when a driver hears the words, "You've got mail." Yikes! Perhaps this gift is best for bored office workers whose employer has a penchant for reading employees' emails. Or those people who refuse to turn off their cell phones in the movie theater in case their babysitter should call with an emergency. Or your pesky sister who refuses to free up the phone line because she's online chatting with each of her 300 buddies.
$99.95 plus $29.95 per month for service http://devices.aol.com/mobile
Know someone who gives you the willies? Perhaps it's the guy in the cubicle next to yours, or, sadly, it may be your husband. And while this person never seems to shed his skin, why not give him something that does in the form of an albino iguana, python or an exotic albino Nile monitor? Reptiles, unlike the recipient of this gift, aren't as slimy as they look, really.
Snakes at Sunset,
9761 Sunset Dr., South Miami, 305-757-6253
You love her dearly, really, you do, but the idea of spending the rest of your life with anybody causes your body to enter into a state of rigor mortis. You've cited Oprah and Steadman, Goldie and Kurt and just about every other happily unmarried couple you could find, but still, your girl won't accept it. She can't understand why you don't want to take the plunge. So rather than diving into a lifetime of bondage, tell her this holiday season that you do love her and you are ready to take the plunge. Into the ocean, that is. Suggest that the two of you get certified to dive, sort of as a test, you could say, and then, if you get along while being deprived of oxygen below the depths of the ocean, maybe, just maybe you'll be able to allow yourself to be suffocated in a state of till-death-do-you- part matrimony. The course classroom training, pool training and then ocean dives at Pennekamp in Key Largo. Now if they only had such a class for marriage certification....
$145, South Beach Divers,
850 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, 305-531-6110,