Gift Ideas For the Last Minute Shopper

… The Cousin You Haven’t Seen in 15 Years

A Gawker Guide to Last-Minute Christmas GiftsYou’re not really sure why, you guess everyone’s just been busy, but you haven’t seen this cousin since you were kids and now you’re both basically grown up and don’t know each other at all, but they’re coming to your house for Christmas this year and it’s going to be soooo awkward. Yeah you’re the same age and all, but that’s it! You’ll be forced to hang out together and yet very likely will have nothing to talk about. Worse still, your mom has instructed you to buy them a Christmas present, because, y’know, you’ll know what they like better than she will. You want to get them a gift that says you’re cool but not trying too hard. You don’t want to get them something that makes you seem weird and dorky. Really, it has nothing to do with them and everything to do with you. My recommendation? Get them that new Daily Show history of Earth book. Or something like that. Arrested Development on DVD. Y’know, something young and smart and “snarky,” because that’s pretty baseline appealing to people you and your cousin’s age, right? The only way it would backfire would be if they’re some weird Fox News-watching, humorless asshole. In which case, who cares. That’s probably why you haven’t seen them in fifteen years anyway.

… The Friend You Didn’t Think You Were Exchanging Gifts With

A Gawker Guide to Last-Minute Christmas GiftsOh god, shit. Your friend totally just asked you “So when do you want to exchange gifts?” and you were like “Um… Sunday?” because you figured that at least bought you a day or two to desperately think of something. Dammit, why did your friend have to go and buy you something? You thought you two had an understanding! You’re too broke or too busy to be running around buying presents for all of your friends. This is really inconsiderate of your friend, to just assume you’re going to get a present for them. FUCK. You don’t even like this friend that much! You kinda just call them up when no one else is around and you don’t feel like sitting around the house. Does that make you a jerk? Yeah, probably, but no more of a jerk than this friend who thinks everyone’s out there buying them presents all the time. You know, fuck it. Just get them like a hat/gloves/scarf set at Old Navy. Whatever. Try to wrap it nicely. You’re sure whatever they got you can’t be that good anyway. (Though, just in case, be sure to open theirs first. So if it’s good, give them the hat and gloves and say “Also, I’m taking you to dinner!” Nice save, right?)

… The Awkward Receptionist You Got for Office Secret Santa

A Gawker Guide to Last-Minute Christmas GiftsYou and your project teammate tried to rig it so you’d get each other and just buy each other drinks, but it was a little harder to do than you’d thought, so now you’re stuck with Donna, the weird receptionist who has a framed picture of a horse on her desk. Is it her horse? Is it just a horse she admires? You can’t tell and you’ve never asked. So something horse related maybe? But what’s under $20 that’s horse related? A Seabiscuit DVD? Is the sequel to that, the Diane Lane one, is that out on DVD yet? How much do DVDs even cost these days? Um… Oh, you saw her reading Girl With the Dragon Tattoo a couple months ago, maybe she needs the next book in the series? No, she seems like someone who would read an entire book series pretty quickly. Dammit, why do you sign up for these stupid Secret Santas anyway, they’re always way more of a headache than they’re worth. If you could just get up the courage to ask your project teammate out on a proper date, you wouldn’t have had to do this whole ridiculous Secret Santa charade. But no, you’re too chickenshit, so now you’re standing in the Hallmark store, trying to find a horse figurine for Donna. And you’re not going to find one under $20 and you’ll just end up getting her a Dunkin’ Donuts gift card and for the next two weeks she’ll trundle by your cubicle every morning and say “Thanks for the coffee!” and your project teammate will get engaged over New Year’s, you didn’t even know they were dating someone, how could you not have known that??, and you really need a new job.

… The Girl Who’s About Your Age That Your Dad Just Married

A Gawker Guide to Last-Minute Christmas GiftsSo… you have to get this Kiki person presents now? Like, that’s expected of you? That seems unfair. You already have to get stuff for mom, more stuff now that she’s alone and living in that condo down by the water, and you’re also supposed to get stuff for Kiki the travel agent? Nice, dad, really nice. Well, let’s see. You don’t want to rock the boat at Christmas, so while it would be kind of fun to get her something passive aggressive like a spray tan gift certificate or something from Forever 21, you’re not gonna do that. Maybe a scarf? People like scarves, right? Well, your mom likes scarves. Kiki is definitely not your mom. Kiki is… Kiki is always carrying around that stupid little dog! Get the dog an outfit! That way you’re not really even getting a present for Kiki, you’re getting one for Prada the dog, but it’ll still look like you put some thought into it and your dad will put his arm on your shoulder and say “You did good, kiddo, you did good. Thanks for trying. I know it’s hard, but it means a lot to both of us.” And Kiki will give you a big hug and then she’ll give you the awesome present she got you, how did she know you wanted this?, and you’ll feel bad for all the mean things you said about her to mom.

… The Significant Other You’re Going to Break Up With After New Year’s

A Gawker Guide to Last-Minute Christmas GiftsI mean, you can’t do it beforehand because you already have the hotel downtown booked for New Year’s Eve and everything. And clearly you have to get them something for Christmas. But, really, is it worth it to get something that expensive? This thing’s gonna be over in a little more than two weeks anyway. A sweater? People like sweaters, but they don’t say too much, y’know? Obviously not concert tickets, because, well duh. Something technological? A cellphone? A digital camera? Those all sound awfully expensive. This is gonna be hard. But you’ve kinda been having feelings for your project teammate at work for a while and you’re pretty sure they’re into you, so doesn’t that mean you have to break up with your significant other? It does, right? It’s not like they’re going to propose at the hotel room on New Year’s Eve or anything. And it’s not like you’ll say yes or anything and then the next Monday at work you’ll reluctantly tell your project teammate and they’ll look disappointed and you’ll feel a strange pull in your gut and weird Donna will walk by and say something about coffee and you’ll think “I really need a new job.” It’s not like that’s going to happen! You’re going to break up. For sure. And you need a present. So, West Wing DVDs it is.

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