Shortcutting… Choosing Presents

27 Jun

This week I have been involved in a group effort to buy someone a leaving present, and it has been far from plain sailing. Basically, it’s all getting rather heated, with no one able to agree on what would make a suitable present – great entertainment but slightly worrying when said leaving is getting sooner and sooner. Being the absolute wimp that I am, I’m far too scared to get involved in the debate myself, but I do have some opinions to share with an audience who (hopefully) won’t shoot me down ruthlessly.

My real area of expertise lies in birthday presents: I am very much a fan of the quirky, humorous little present that has a (tenuous) link with our friendship – in recent months I have given friends a set of test-tube shot glasses (complete with rack of course), a fire extinguisher water bottle (for extinguishing that thirst!), and a ring with a bottle-opener on it. Weirdly these are all related to drinking. I must stress that this is a coincidence and says nothing about them or me… My primary advice would be to make a little spider diagram of private jokes and things you have in common, and then try to think of things that are at least loosely related to one of these in some way. Also, don’t worry about the value or usefulness of the present too much – let’s face it: whatever you get them, they’ll put it at the bottom of a cupboard somewhere and it’ll never cross their mind again, so you may as well at least make them laugh a bit.

For leaving presents, I’d suggest something small and portable that will remind the person in some small way of home. A little cushion or piece of jewellery might be nice, although it might be worth thinking of the environment and getting something that’ll biodegrade quickly, so as not to fill up any landfill sites.

In both of these cases, I would say that the card is far more important than the present. I quite often hand-make my cards, and I always try to fill them with as many hilarious memories as possible (although these days one must be careful not to have too much overlap between card jokes and wall post jokes). I am not generally one for cheese and sentimentality, but I do think that cards are something that can be treasured (sickly word) for a long time, and re-read again and again to make you smile. Okay that was very cheesy, I do apologise!

Don’t forget to ask for the gift-wrap!

Keep shortcutting,


2 Responses to “Shortcutting… Choosing Presents”

  1. mamagirlsaysitall July 1, 2012 at 12:45 am #

    I am a self-professed terrible gift giver. I suck at it. I invaribly forget that I supposed to provide a gift until the very last minute, then I suffer terrible anxiety over trying to pick something that they’ll love which causes me to completley forget anything important, sentimental, or funny that we’ve ever experienced together. Yep, I suck at it! Next time I have to purchase a gift (which will likely be next week), I’ll revisit this page for some reminders. =)

    • shortcutting July 1, 2012 at 10:29 am #

      I hope I can help, it is a very stressful business. Remember, it’s the thought that counts… (A great excuse for all terrible presents.)

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