Anti-Gift Guide: Ten Last-Minute Gifts to Avoid

If you're reading any gift guide so late in the Christmas game, sorry to tell you -- your goose is already cooked. Significant others can sniff out ill thought up and last minute presents faster than the unfamiliar scent of Chanel No. 5 or Musk on your collar. What you need to be concerned with at this point is damage control. You fucked up, fine. Don't exacerbate the situation by making poor gift purchases when time is tight.

This post isn't about what to get that certain someone in your life, it's about what certain something not to get. For ideas check out always popular bacon gifts or hipster gifts. The only thing worse than not picking a thoughtful, meaningful present is trying to fake like you did. And these next ten gifts say, in no uncertain terms, I'm inconsiderate and a phony at the same time.

10. Pre-packed Gift Set from Macy's or Other Department Store

Nothing says I'm really not that into you better than those ready made,

already wrapped and usually pretty cheap gift packs from department

stores. Whether they contain hand or face cream and soap, costume

jewelry, or a perfume set, stay away. The cookie cutter wrapping is a

dead giveaway, and the idea that you can stroll into a store find

something in five minutes, drop only $15 to $30 on a present and leave

is too simple and rationale to be acceptable during the holidays.

9. Classes

If you're a woman, never, we repeat, never, sign your man up for any

kind of class: culinary, surfing, knitting, languages, or anything else.

Lack of time might delude you into thinking you're helping him improve

himself, but he'll take it like you're saying he's not good enough as

currently constituted, which, let's be honest, is what you are saying.

8. Slutty Lingerie

If you're a man, buying lingerie for your woman is usually a good idea.

But hastily purchased lingerie, usually in red and black, and with

the subtlety of crotchless panties says, "I'm a thoughtless prick," more than

anything else. Also, never say, "it looked good on the sales woman,"

when trying to justify the purchase.

7. Mix CD

This isn't the 1980s when it took time and effort to compile your

favorite songs and record them on a mixed tape for your lover. Today, it

only takes a couple of mouse clicks and an iTunes  account (or

Limewire, for those of you who are especially cheap) to burn a CD. Even

if you doll up the CD itself or the plastic cases, it's still a

transparent gift that says all the wrong things about what you're

willing to do for you old lady or man.

6. Any Gift You Could Have Only Bought in the Last Week

Unless you planned something way ahead of time, don't date your gift. No

matter how great it is, if she or he finds out it was bought on the way

to their house on Christmas Eve, they'll think you consider them a

minor nuisance like picking up a bottle of wine, loaf of bread, or half

gallon of milk from Farm Stores.

5. Framed Pictures

This only works for children, who don't have the financial wherewithal

to get actual gifts. When you snatch a photo, dump it in cheap

Walgreen's picture frame, throw some wrapping on it, and think you're

set, you've actually just bought a one-way ticket to Singlesville.

You're better off keeping the frame since it'll likely be one of your

last reminders of a relationship which will soon be over.


4. Gifts You Enjoy More Than Recipient

Video games, Heat tickets, and a box set of porn for her, and ballet

tickets, a day at the spa, and airplane tickets to visit her in-laws for

him, are gifts that the getter will see right through. The presents are

really for you, and trying to pass them off as gifts for others is

transparent and wrong.

3. Naming a Star

You can have a star named after someone from the International Star

Registry for a mere $54. But you might as well name a constellation

after Uranus, because you're a big time ass if you think pointing in the

sky and saying that speck represents somebody is a cool gift. Maybe if you were one of the

first 100,000 to do it, but now it's just old. And how do you really

know those Star Registry people are not double, or triple selling the same

stars. Nothing is quite as embarrassing as telling somebody there is a

star named after you only to find out it was already theirs.

2. Anything You've Made Yourself

C'mon. Who are you trying to kid? You can't even carve your name into a

picnic table, much less whittle a gazebo in a short amount of time.

Nothing is worse than a home made gift that looks rushed or hastily

bought together. If you make something yourself, you better damn well be

sure it took a long time, and be able to prove it.

1. Homemade Certificates

Free massages for life, a home cooked meal, sleep-in certificates

printed out on your home computer and given to you significant others

are the shallowest most thoughtless gifts you can ever give. Writing

three lines and hitting print on your computer do not constitute a gift.

And, trust us, we know from experience, this gift will always be a

source of contention as the recipient will make fun of it for all of

your time together, or, and this is even worse, they will keep it and

refer to it every night just before you go to bed and say, "I have a

certificate which entitles me to free massages for life." Can't cheat

Christmas, so don't even try.

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Sebastian del Mármol