Happy Christmas…and a Merry 4th of July

I have been a little busy lately (NOT with personal projects, unfortunately) and I just picked my head up to noticed that Christmas is a WEEK AWAY! What’s next, 4th of July? My 40th Birthday? WHOAAAA…pump the brakes Father Time!

I’m finally excited about the holidays. In the past my holidays were spent working slavishly in retail making me HATE the sound of sleigh bells and the sight of cheer… Retail did have one lasting positive impact on me–I DO NOT GO HOLIDAY SHOPPING! I simply refuse to enter a crowded store in search of last-minute gifts, nor do I brave the hoards of lunatics rushing out in the wee-morning-hours of Black Friday for a flat-screen. Nope. The darkness of people I have seen from the other side of the counter during the holidays is enough to scare me away for life. It’s terrifying. All I have to say is, folks…this isn’t a pop-up holiday! Christmas is the same day every year. Get your shit together in October, you maniacs.

Here are some easy Christmas gifts that you can purchase from home…and if you’re one of those people who likes the crowd crush–let me take this moment to give you the middle finger and say Thank You for making the lives of those around you miserable. I hope you die alone, under heaps of credit card debt. DICK!

AMAZON.COM… I suggest this because you don’t have to leave your home and you can get all of your gift shopping done at a cheap price, in one sitting, in your underwear with greasy hair and coffee breath–awesome, you’re so hot. NOTE…I utilized this website when I was seriously strapped for cash because the books are cheap–and you can buy used. Now that I have some cash-flow I like to make my book purchases at independent book stores. It is always important to support small business when you can. And writers.

GIFT CARDS: Gift cards are available ONLINE from nearly every retailer. Again, you can shop in your underwear OR you can run in and purchase a few, quick, quick. NO crowds, no comparing colors and sizes…snore… Honestly, I love gift cards. But one side note on this selection. If you’re buying a gift card for a stylish second-cousin or your brother’s girlfriend… Don’t be a jerk and get a $50 gift card to Chanel or Hermes. It doesn’t make you seem Über fasionable…there isn’t anything in those stores worth buying for under $500. Let’s not kid ourselves. Either pick a reasonable store like Zara (you can shop online now in the U.S.) or increase your budget. OR (and ONLY do this if the recipient is from some farm town in the Mid-West where there isn’t internet or indoor plumbing) buy them something designer from a discount chain… on second thought, this is a waste of everyone’s time. Gift card, online, Zara, done…

BOOZE… Obviously this one has its restrictions… Are they a recovering addict? Are they of age? Are they annoying drunks? How many bottles do you buy? The one question that you shouldn’t worry about is if they are self-proclaimed sommeliers… Don’t stress out over how much to spend on a bottle of wine for a serious wine drinker. I’ve heard plenty of wine enthusiasts complain that they rarely get wine as gifts because people fear their selection will be frowned upon. NOT TRUE. Inexpensive doesn’t mean inadequate when it comes to wine. OBVIOUSLY, you’re not going to get a gallon jug of Carlo Rossi Chianti…unless you’re going for kitsch factor…but you can spend under $20 and find a gem–just talk to the shop-keeper. A knowledgable wine merchant will have suggestions within any price range. Again, try to patronize an independent wine shop–not only to support small businesses but the selection is usually limited…reducing time spent shopping (woohoo.) ALSO try to shop local! Dry Dock in Brooklyn’s Red Hook neighborhood has a wonderful selection from local Brooklyn distilleries. Pick up a cool old-timey looking bottle of bourbon  from Kings County Distillery for your brother (I plan to.)

If you’re not willing to travel to Brooklyn, let alone ALL THE WAY TO RED HOOK… There is another fantastic place…Bottle Rocket. They ship to 25 out of the 50 states. If you visit the shop on 19th Street in Manhattan you’ll notice the kiosks of wine organized by price or CUISINE! They even have a Take-Out kiosk (This feature is available on their website, too) pairing wines with Chinese, Indian, Mexican–even Pizza! They offer gift-wrapping and even gift certificates (back to suggestion number 1–can’t go wrong with a gift card.)

Gift Cards, Online Shopping, and Booze… Happy Holidays. Keep it Classy.

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