Last Minute Christmas Gifts from the Convenience Store
So you've done it again, somehow you've forgotten what day Christmas falls on and are scrambling around the house looking for gifts. No, we don't know how you forgot with the retail Christmas season starting sometime in mid September. Not to mention the copious new stories on "strong retail sales" and Black Friday frenzy induced tramplings. Of course if you looked out the window and saw the obnoxious inflatable ornaments on everyone's lawn and the multicolored lights wrapped around everyone's trees, that could have been a clue too. But this isn't the first year, right? It is an age old Christmas tradition with you. Your procrastination gets your adrenaline pumping and everyone knows you're the family idiot anyway. So really, admit that you want this to happen.
Of course, maybe it's time to stop being the family idiot who gives free back rub coupons to everyone for every holiday. Plus, just to let you know that is a little creepy. At the hour of your revelation however, you are only three hours away from an awkward Christmas dinner and all the stores are closed - or are they? I know you remember that quote from The Boondock Saints, "We're sort of like 7-11. We're not always doing business, but we're always open." Yes Murphy MacManus was talking about the availability of vigilante homicide, but that's besides the point - convenience stores are always open, even on Christmas day..
The great thing about convenience stores, besides being open, is that they have everything you could possibly want for holiday gift giving. So put down the crayons for the back rub coupons, hop in the car, and find your cheerful giving spirit at the corner store. For those of you planning on buying a gift card to your local stop and go, I think you're missing the point (which is no surprise); shopping here is to shop with a flare of creativity. Plus, most likely these places don't have gift cards. I mean really, who would ever purposely shop at one of these places?
So drown out the trappings of Christmas commercialism and opt for a gift which is truly a need and not a want echoing true utilitarian form. Admit it, we all need toilet paper and food - it is the circle of life. Ahh, but to stroke that creative Christmas spirit, you must go beyond the giving of a mere thing and tell a story with your gift. Give something from the heart and inspire the fires that burn in all of us.
This page © Copyright 2011, Daniel Human
The Gift of Travel
Just because your gifts come from the most prosaic of places, doesn't mean you can't give a gift that doesn't spark the passion for something prodigious like travel. Start with basic car supplies like windshield washer, motor oil, and transmission fluid. Give them ideas where to go by throwing in a few road maps or an atlas. Just so they have the energy to go on this exciting trip, grab a couple high-octane caffeine filled energy drinks and an extra large travel mug for coffee. Of course, with the price of gas you may want to give your traveler a few lottery tickets too.
Gifts for the Adventurer
For the adventurously rugged compile gifts that inspire their love of the great outdoors. Grab one of those bundles of expensive firewood wrapped in plastic by the door that nobody buys. And what outdoor outing is complete without a six-pack of beer? It's okay, you don't need to buy the good stuff; anything tastes great around a campfire. Make their outdoor experience complete with a few bags of beef jerky and pair it up with a pack of cheap cigars.
Gifts for Lovers
Do you feel like expressing your true hearts desire this holiday? Show you not-so-lucky intended your affection by assembling gifts that absolutely reek of romance. Start with a bottle of the finest Boone's Farm Wine, pairing it up with small coffee cups (nobody said you had to use them there). Next set the mood. by adding some flavored candles or incense and don't forget a sexy lighter. Finally show your intentions, by throwing in a couple multi-packs of condoms. Go for variety here, show your lack if inhibition by exploring the wonderful world of pocket latex protectors.
It's All About the Presentation
Now you may be asking yourself how to package your treasures given your lack of wrapping paper and gaudy gift bags. Yes, while everyone else scoured the stores looking for the perfect paper to be carefully cut, fold and tape (and then thrown away) you were playing Super Mario Cart. The option here is to make a statement against the environmental wastefulness of packaging and go green this year. So you know those reusable shopping bags that encourage people to be conservation minded by not filling landfills with the throwaway shopping bags? In my travels, I've noticed many convenience stores have these, of course in New York it is because of legislation and not of eco-consciousness. What better idea is there then to use these bags as gift bags? Like a virus it is the gift that keeps on giving. And what better wrapping paper is there than a Christmas Day newspaper? It is recycling and repurposing at its best.
Despair not this yuletide season! As long as there are convenience stores with disgruntled employees forced to work this holiday there is hope for you and other procrastinators around the country.