December 22, 2016

"I don’t want anything this Christmas. Not one thing. And I have never felt more festive...."

"Call me cheap. But you’re still not getting anything this Christmas."

67 comments:

traditionalguy said...

Ebeneezer Scrooge, redux.

Lyin'PB_Ombudsman said...

It seems like this sorta post would be counterproductive re pushing folks to use the Amazon portal.

Maybe it's some sort of reverse psy thing-y. Like Scott Adams telling his boss who always said no, in the olden days, that there was such or another request but really it was just not possible, so the boss can ignore it. Then, supposedly, the boss always completed whatever the request was.

Maybe Meadehouse has genuinely decided that pushing dough generation w/ the portal is tacky.

I dunno.

rehajm said...

I got you exactly what you wanted!

Bay Area Guy said...

It depends if you still have kids at home (I have teenagers) or grandkids nearby. If so, well, ya gotta get into the Christmas spirit.

If it was just the missus and I in older age, Yes, a glass of wine, and a walk with the dog in the Marina in SF, would work just fine.

Michael K said...

People who don't thank the giver, especially for gifts for their children, are off the list.

Michael K said...

I already got my Christmas present but California make me wait 10 days to pick it up.

traditionalguy said...

Christmas gifts are great Grandchildren traps. You can play them for lots of Grandparent attention and throw in belief traditions about the incarnation of baby Jesus.

Sarah from VA said...

I feel like it should be this way with all adults. You're an adult! If you want something and you can afford it, buy it! If you can't afford it, wouldn't you feel a little weird about somebody else buying it for you? My mom's love language is gifting -- she still feels disappointed every year when my dad doesn't get her anything for Christmas, or her birthday or anniversary -- and when I was growing up I told myself that I would have a husband who gave me presents, dang it! But now that I actually have a husband, I do NOT want him to buy me gifts. We share the same bank account and I'm better at shopping than he is. We have it worked out where he just gives me time -- either he watches the kids and I get some time alone, or he arranges a babysitter so we can have time together -- and it is a much better arrangement.

My siblings all have kids, and so we've mutually agreed to stop sending gifts to each other, but my husbands siblings don't, and so every year I quietly despair about what to give them. Can't we just NOT? (And forget about giving to parents -- his are downsizing and don't need or want any more stuff, and mine are borderline hoarders that I don't want to enable. I love you, parents and in-laws! But I have no desire to show it with a gift!)

But for kids, yeah, they love stuff and occasionally even need something. I limit it to one toy gift per child at Christmas -- and I spend all month managing expectations accordingly -- but it is fun to give something new and special for a kid. Even if you end up throwing it away in a bout of angry cleaning two years later. :)

madAsHell said...

I bought my a wife a Trump chia pet......because she voted vagina.

Rick said...

Sarah from VA said...
I feel like it should be this way with all adults. You're an adult! If you want something and you can afford it, buy it! If you can't afford it, wouldn't you feel a little weird about somebody else buying it for you?


I stopped writing my comment because I saw this. Everything in it including the parts I didn't copy is exactly right, except I don't know how you limit it to one toy gift. I'd be on board but my wife feels differently.

Rick said...

Michael K said...
I already got my Christmas present but California make me wait 10 days to pick it up.


We should be able to guess this. Mail order bride held in refugee camp during background check? Imported silkworms for your skinsuit in quarantine?

rhhardin said...

Any kid with a Lionel train set can use additional stuff each year.

rhhardin said...

I suppose kids don't get rifles anymore.

Unknown said...

I think Micheal K ordered some sweet Cuban Cigars coming through Salt Lake City. Thus, California has slapped a "Beware of Conservatives" custom inspection.

If he'd just had them smuggled through Mexico, he could have had them the next day.

--Vance

rhhardin said...

Grandkids get drum sets.

EMD said...

The whole concept of giving is not about money, nor is it about who receives the gift.

Anglelyne said...

We had splendiferous Christmases in my family when I was growing up - but we weren't big on gift-giving at all. Presents under the tree (and not expensive ones, either) were for the delight of children. (And believe me, I got as much joy and excitement out of a Christmas with a few presents of little material value, as any kid who got piles of pricey toys ever did.) Sometimes, if it was known that one or the other of the grandparents (or any other family member, really) was saving up for some big-ticket item, or would really enjoy some luxury that they never would or could buy for themselves, the adult children would all pitch in to get it for them. Plenty of good food, flowing wine, and good company all through the holidays. Running around frantically trying to find gifts for all and sundry just to have some gift for them was not encouraged or admired.

That's still the way we roll in my house. There's nothing "Scrooge" about it at all. It's a matter of priorities and spending money on what everybody really enjoys and values.

Michael K said...

"We should be able to guess this."

Very much like this one.

I gave my son all my 9mm when I gave him my Beretta. Have to buy more.

bagoh20 said...

I like the policy, but someone has to go first, and you just can't trust people. You do a nice thing like not get them a gift, and then they go and screw you over by getting you something nice. People like that need to be taught a lesson with a nice new car in front of the house on Christmas morning. That'll teach 'em.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Sarah said: I feel like it should be this way with all adults. You're an adult! If you want something and you can afford it, buy it! If you can't afford it, wouldn't you feel a little weird about somebody else buying it for you?

As a definite adult, I'm of two, or several minds on this.

First it is really touching to have someone take the time to think about what might make you happy. To be aware of what you like, what you already have, what you may need and take the time to go and find what they think may be the perfect gift. It means that they are thinking about who you ARE. It may not be perfect, but as the old adage says...It is the thought that counts. Your spouse or SO spent the time and effort. That counts for a lot. My best gift last year was a pound box of See's candy with just my two favorite pieces. It meant a lot to me that my husband paid attention and had the box made specially for me.

On the other hand. When you reach a certain point in life and you can afford to buy yourself things or have been on the planet long enough... you really have accumulated pretty much everything you need. You already OWN it and to buy something else is either a repeat or afterthought. Then you end up spending money on dumb things, cheap crap, useless stuff. Gah!!!! more socks!!!! Great! more spatulas from Spatula City :-0 A gift card which means I don't GAF and couldn't take the time.

On the other other hand. When you reach that point in life where you have so much...perhaps a funny joke gift. I like the Trump Chia head for certain people who can take a joke. Perhaps you would be better off just going out to a nice dinner, a movie,a show, a vacation.

Buying just for the sake of buying is ridiculous.

Bay Area Guy said...

It's sunny, cool and brisk in the City by the Bay. Geographically, SF is a gorgeous City (if you don't hang out too long by the Tenderloin or Haight-Ashbury) Hills, Cable Cars, sweeping views of the water.

Game plan: gather the kids and missus, take a Cable Car up Nob Hill to the Fairmont Hotel . The Christmas decorations are splendid, and the views spectacular. No, we're not staying there -- the kids don't appreciate it.

Then, a nice stroll down past Chinatown, to Columbus Ave to an Italian restaurant in North Beach. If you go early, all is good. Mmm - baked ziti. Then, some Gelato at that little place off Union St, around the corner from famous Saints Peter & Paul Church.

Then, to beat the awful traffic, you walk down Columbus to Market Street, and take the Bart train home.

If the politics weren't so completely moronic here, it'd be a magical place.

Curious George said...

My grandson is getting a big red fire engine peddle car.

Michael K said...

"My grandson is getting a big red fire engine peddle car."

I got one when I was about 4. I loved it but I got tired of peddling it and left it down the block and went home. When I went back, it was gone. My first experience with crime. I can still remember exactly where I left it.

JAORE said...

I suppose kids don't get rifles anymore.

I strongly suspect THIS kid will this year.

rhhardin said...

A good DVD from Hollywood would be nice.

Sully was okay but had no plot other than what they made up to have a plotlet. The technical aviation details were realistic, a surprise.

Jason Bourne has gone all psychological, to bring in women less interested in manly explosions, chases and firefights.

wildswan said...

One year I got a huge cardboard box and filled it with colorful tinselly paper to give to a three year old. Part way down and at the bottom I scattered stickers. It worked perfectly (they really are more interested in the wrapping) and afterward she put it together and took it apart several times and then set up house in it. Well-off adults and college students are hard. I'm thinking small drone or a pack of radio-controlled cars. Heritage seeds for the pure.

One Christmas in the midst of the Sixties I had no one to give to and the hippies around me did not want to celebrate in any way - we had Chinese food. This is one reason I stopped wanting to be a lefty - it just seemed so dreary. Why couldn't there be fun and beauty as well as righteousness in the new better world I believed we were building?

traditionalguy said...

The well of Romantic gifts for wives can dry up after diamonds, etc, perfumes and furs are up dated.

Imagine Christmas shopping for a new gift for Melania Trump that she doesn't already have.

One good idea is a Spa's Gift certificate of services such as deep tissue massage, facials and nails etc.

Michael K said...

"I strongly suspect THIS kid will this year."

The bigger the kid, the bigger the present.

Rick said...

Michael K said...
I loved it but I got tired of peddling it and left it down the block and went home. When I went back, it was gone.


So you peddled it for nothing.

traditionalguy said...

One Christmas I gave my older son the 22 we had often shot together, and soon thereafter I gave him the 1874 Winchester lever action, and the straight pull Swiss Army rifle, and the 1895 303 Enfield and the 1898 Mauser. Interestingly, only the Remington 22 was semiautomatic. He was always a natural shot like Sgt York was in the 82nd in France.

Two years later, he served as a Sgt in the 82nd Airborne in the first Iraq War. Instead of old stuff, he then used a million dollar Laser targeting device as a Forward Recon man. He was a natural.

David said...

My wife and I have 8 children between us and eight grandchildren. Counting partners and spouses that's 24 in the direct family line gift list, plus ourselves.

We are giving some small gifts, but stopped buying gifts a few weeks ago. Those not already purchased for will go without. It was an arbitrary cutoff but that's the way it is.

Instead we are donating $100 per family member to Mercy Corps for relief of Syrian refugees from Aleppo.

We don't always do the charity in lieu of gifts thing but it seems right this year.

MadisonMan said...

I don't want anything this Christmas except for you to read this tedious work about how I'm not wanting or giving anything for Christmas.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

The well of Romantic gifts for wives can dry up after diamonds, etc, perfumes and furs are up dated.

I dunno, I was pretty thrilled with my box of special order See's candy. I felt pretty romantic about the pasta maker attachment for my Kitchen Aid mixer. Romance depends on what type of things you hold dear.

Actually, I'm a pretty practical person....I already told my husband do not ever buy me cut flowers....all they are going to do is die. Buy me a fruit tree or a japanese maple for the yard. Perfume...meh. Jewelry, already have it, a lot, and don't wear much now that I'm retired.

My husband, so sweetly and thoughtfully, bought me a session at a spa for a deep tissue massage. I thanked him profusely and lied about how wonderful it was.....actually, I felt like I'd been beaten up by a ball peen hammer. It took me a couple of days to just be able to move without pain. I hope he never gets me one again or I can change it out for some other procedure that doesn't make you feel like a punching bag.

I would like a Lady Smith 36 but...we are in California and it is such a PIA to go that way.

Michael K said...

"The well of Romantic gifts for wives can dry up after diamonds, etc, perfumes and furs are up dated."

I got my wife a gold charm bracelet on eBay last year. She loved it. I took it to a jeweler and had him polish it in the jewelry polisher and it looked brand new. It already had a bunch of charms that pretty well matched our lives. This year she gets two more charms.

madAsHell said...

When I went back, it was gone. My first experience with crime. I can still remember exactly where I left it.

I managed to keep mine. The folks finally sold it when the grandkids out-grew the car. My Dad sold it for $200 to a window display designer. Now every time I see fire truck peddle car in a Christmas window display, I look for the identifying dings, and dents of my fire truck peddle car.


Tank said...

rhhardin said...

I suppose kids don't get rifles anymore.


Do shotguns count?

Old Tank Kid

Meade said...

Too bad my brothers and I didn't take better care of the red McCormick Farmall 400 pedal tractor with wagon Grandpa gave us for Christmas in 1959. By 1964 it was pretty much beat up beyond all repair. Tragedy of the commons.

jimbino said...

Economically speaking, the four dumbest things Amerikans do regularly are:

Buy unsolicited presents for others.
Tip for service in restaurants and bars, or otherwise.
Voluntarily carry insurance for anything.
Participate in lotteries or raffles.

Why? Because the expected return on all is much less than 100% of the dollars spent.

Meade said...

"I like the policy, but someone has to go first, and you just can't trust people. You do a nice thing like not get them a gift, and then they go and screw you over by getting you something nice."

This is why I've made it my policy to regift everything anyone ever gives me. It reduces clutter which in itself is a wonderful gift.

Curious George said...

"Meade said...
Too bad my brothers and I didn't take better care of the red McCormick Farmall 400 pedal tractor with wagon Grandpa gave us for Christmas in 1959. By 1964 it was pretty much beat up beyond all repair. Tragedy of the commons"

I looked at a few 50's and 60's classics. AMF. Murray. Too much money (I could buy a real one for less) but those are really collectibles. Give them to a 2-1/2 year old and they would be destroyed. I got him a nice future classic from Pottery Barn Kids. He'll love it. And hope he drives my son insane with the bell!

traditionalguy said...

Somewhere long ago and far away a teacher exposited that, "... It is better to give than to receive." They wrote it down. and since then many witness to having had that same experience. And the guy's name is still found all over the place in December.

Anglelyne said...

wildswan: One year I got a huge cardboard box and filled it with colorful tinselly paper to give to a three year old. Part way down and at the bottom I scattered stickers. It worked perfectly (they really are more interested in the wrapping) and afterward she put it together and took it apart several times and then set up house in it.

What a great idea. I think we had more fun with the packing boxes and odds and ends pinched from dad's workbench than we ever had with store-bought toys.

Well-off adults and college students are hard. I'm thinking small drone or a pack of radio-controlled cars. Heritage seeds for the pure.

I was going to say that there isn't anything I want for Christmas, but, now that you mention it, a drone would be fun. (But I think what I really need is firearms training, though. Then some firearms.)

traditionalguy said...

In the circa 1933 Christmas the poor kids got an orange, if they were lucky. The Rich kids got a Red Ryder Air Rifle.

The terrible FDR was the only hope they had left. And DJT has revived FDR's Happy Days showtime. Never discount that.

harrogate said...

I always sort of thought one marker of growing up is that giving gifts gets more fun, but receiving them becomes something you can take or leave. I truly love picking out gifts for people stil. Sarah from VA makes a great point tho: when you share a bank account it's sort of weird to buy presents for your significant other. Things like creating time are definitely the way to go there

Paul Snively said...

I'm firmly in the "I don't need anything" camp as well, but my wife told me she got me very "interesting" stocking-stuffers after we took a Disneyland/California Adventure vacation and called that our Christmas/Hannukah present to each other. We're in the midst of preparing to move across the country, don't need to have more stuff cluttering up the place/that we have to pack and move, and the one thing I said I wanted was to say goodbye to the Tower of Terror before it closes. So I already got what I wanted for Christmas anyway.

So now I have to figure out what to put in a Hannukah stocking. Fast.

steve uhr said...

Merry Christmas and happy holidays to the people who make this blog interesting and to the other coomentators as well.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Obligatory: YT: I'm Gettin' Nuttin' For Christmas

Michael said...

My wife received a Beretta Bobcat 22 LR pistol. Plus safety and shooting instructions. I will give my kid's cash with the stipulation that some of it must be given away before the end of Christmas day to people they find who appear deserving. This creates the need to drive around a bit and be witness to those who have so much less and to whom a little to my kids is a lot to others. I have done this myself in past years.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree,
How faithful are your branches.

But the roots, man. They are down and dirty!
They get twisty with any ol' root they touch.
Not particular about inter-species twistin' either.

I am not Laslo.

Freeman Hunt said...

I wouldn't mind at all if someone told me they weren't getting me anything.

rhhardin said...

Triple 9 may take the cake for a plot that makes no sense, different characters being indistinguishable and the settings being dark, which means black screen action.

Fortunately you can read the plot afterwards on Wikipedia, where it makes no more sense.

A nice touch would have been an "alternate ending" feature which also makes no sense.

Freeman Hunt said...

I have a relative who openly hates every gift he's given. I've always thought it was funny. Last year I bought him a very nice pair of wool socks, and he actually liked them. This year I bought him a box of persimmons. We'll see.

harrogate said...

Michael, that's very cool.

ALP said...

My family moved to homemade gifts years ago. Easy to do when there are no kids - the youngest is 26 years old.

This year's main gift: home made crispy onions. I am not kidding - this year processing about 10 lbs of onions into a fabulous thing to add to soups, salads etc. When the family is mainly vegetarian, making food with flavors that really pop is tough. Crispy onions to the rescue.

I am more about gifts for birthdays - allows me to focus on one person at a time. Having to buy gifts for a number of people at the SAME time everybody else is doing it sucks.

Our family is moving to "Opposite Christmas" held in June or July - apparently much easier to arrange when you've got a tenured professor in the family.

Meade said...

"This year I bought him a box of persimmons. We'll see. "

I predict he'll be truly delighted with the persimmons and will invite everyone to enjoy eating them with him. Great idea.

David said...

Freeman Hunt said...
I wouldn't mind at all if someone told me they weren't getting me anything.


Freeman, I am not giving you a gift this year. But it is nice to hear your voice in the comments.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

I'm estranged from both parents and a brother, and my sister and I decided years ago that we wouldn't gift each other or each others' kids (we both have five now) as it's just too much to juggle. That's easy. I make fancy spiced pecans to bag up for pretty much everyone else. They're not terribly sweet, keep a long time and jazz up virtuous January salads.

For a long time I bought too much for my kids, to the point where we kept having to urge them to continue opening ("here's another one!! Look!"). This year, we kept the gifts modest and are doing the travel route instead. The week after Christmas my husband and I are going to California for a couple of days (our gift to each other), and the first week of January the whole family is going to New York City. Any cash the kids receive from other relatives (I buy their gift cards if they are willing) they can use for souvenirs when we go.

Because we still want to open presents, I think in the future we'll use the formula for the kids "something to wear and something to read; something you want and something you need" plus throw a few small gifts in their stockings along with candy and call it a day. Then, budget allowing, we can do the adults-only trip and the whole-family trip and that's the main gift.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

ALP~I would love that as a gift. Very creative and fabulous!

HoodlumDoodlum said...

That is a great idea, ALP. My mother has done flavored booze for the last few years (bourbon or vodka steeped with flavorings for several weeks, portioned off into little bottles with home-printed sticky labels) and I think they're very well received.

iowan2 said...

rhhardin said...
I suppose kids don't get rifles anymore.

When I read the article,(as far as I could stomach it) and saw that the author claimed he couldn't remember a single gift, I felt so sad for his privileged childhood.
I remember lots. A little transistor radio WITH an ear plug!!! I could listen to the radio when I went to bed!, several pocket knives, one sheath knife, an Air gun, a rifle, several wrist watches, I could go on, bet I could come up with 18.

Being lower middle class, really was a happier life.

n.n said...

Wow, not even a thought. That is beyond Grinch.

paminwi said...

We give our adult "kids" magazine subscriptions of their choosing. It's a gift that keeps giving all year long. Then either an Amazon Prime membership or CostCo membership. Their choice. Add in a few prepaid movie tickets. They both live in NYC and movie tickets are expensive compared to here. They are very happy with those items.

paminwi said...
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paminwi said...
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Saint Croix said...

I don’t want anything this Christmas. Not one thing. And I have never felt more festive.

He wants to keep his money! That's a big want. "Boy I like my money and I want to keep it and I don't want to spend it on other people."

What he means to say, I think, is that he doesn't want anything this Christmas from other people. I think the people in his immediate family should be like this: "No sex for you, then, since you don't want anything. And no food, either. And no conversation or good times, since you're all good by yourself, you independent-being-who-doesn't-need-anything." I'm an independent being, as far as independent beings go. And I like being able to go into a restaurant and give money to people and they will fix food for me and bring it to me. That's awesome. But God help me if those people decide they are pissed off. "I'm not bring you shit, you rich fucker! Fuck you and your little green pieces of paper!"

I don't know what they hell I would do if all the agreements and trust of capitalism falls apart, and we no longer have this system in place. I'd be driving around looking for cows I can kill. And then I'd have to kill the damn thing. And then I'd have to build a fire and try to figure out where the damn tasty parts of the cow are.

Saint Croix said...

Call me cheap. But you’re still not getting anything this Christmas.

Contemplate your own fears! Why are you holding on to your money? Are you afraid of starvation? Being homeless? If you're so independent and self-sufficient ("I don't want anything! I have achieved a perfect state of needless existence!") why are you holding on to your money?

I mock your fear, greedy man!

One of the points of Scrooge was how unhappy he was. Rich guy, made all kinds of money, and he was bitter and mean and unhappy. You want to celebrate Scrooge? What movie did you see? He was lonely and miserable!

Charity is cheap. If you've lost the spirit of Christmas, invite a homeless guy to the Outback. If you're bored giving presents to other rich people, find some poor friends. Christianity is not rocket science.

The Gold Digger said...

It is the thought that counts

Not when the thought leads you to a cast-iron cat and a framed photo of the in-laws who told your husband not to marry you and threatened to boycott the wedding because you were a gold-digging whore who wouldn't get a job.