Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Peasants

There should be a rule against buying Christmas (or birthday) presents from: any supermarket, Superdrug, Woolworth's (RIP – though serve it right for selling crap for so long – even cheap crap is still crap), Boots, Argos, W H Smith. Come on – get some imagination! This isn't the 1970s – you're meant to have good taste now, you haven't even got an excuse because you live in some craphole in the middle of nowhere (i.e. not London) – get online!

On the other hand, around this time of year, we have ads telling us to buy iPods, laptops (!), dental hygiene products (?) as presents. Amazon emailed me the other week – a 'bargain buy' for 'my' Christmas stocking. The quote marks are mine: I'm not sure if I'm meant to buy my own Christmas stocking present or buy it for someone else – either way, a food mixer for £129 or a digital camera for £99 probably wouldn't fit and certainly isn't a bargain. My own boyhood Christmas stockings consisted of walnuts, tangerines and chocolate. I mean, shit, we're not made of money – isn't this (partly) why we're in a recession in the first place? But also, an electronic item seems to lack warmth, personality and soul, you know. I say (and this is my other hand saying it), raid the charity shops, CBS (car boot sales) and antique/junk shops for that unique and special present that says you've hunted and thought about. Branded clothes, perfume and electrical goods do not count.

On the other hand (I handily have three), for me personally, if you're stuck, I'm pretty happy with art books, post-rock CDs or obscure foreign movie DVD box-sets (but not just any – please check with me first).

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