Dashing Through the StoreOpinion
SAN ANGELO, Texas - Those readers who happen to belong to the female gender can just skip this column since it doesn’t pertain to women in the least. This column is strictly offered for the guys, because guys typically wait until the last minute to do their Christmas shopping, under the assumption that life as we know it could possibly come to a screeching halt before December 25, and they’ll be off the hook for buying gifts. Statistically, this rarely happens, but guys are usually a lot more optimistic about things like Armageddon than women are.
You women, if you’re still reading this, are probably smiling smugly to yourselves, knowing you’ve had all your Christmas shopping done for months. You spent hours wandering through malls and shopping centers, handling potential gift items, comparing prices, perusing notes about colors and styles and sizes, and selecting tasteful, thoughtful presents for everyone on your Christmas lists. You’re done. You’ve taken all the panic and excitement out of the holiday, not to mention making those of us who don’t happen to be women look like a bunch of slackers.
Well, let me just point out, on behalf of guys everywhere, that you ladies are going to feel pretty silly on Christmas Eve if the sky starts raining meteors and asteroids, and the End Of The World As We Know It comes, and all that shopping turns out to be for naught. There’s something to be said for procrastination, and I plan to put it in this column, if I get around to thinking it up.
While you women were frittering away your time, shopping, buying, wrapping, and being all thoughtful, the guys were engaging in important, productive, energetic activities that actually made a difference in the greater scheme of things, such as hunting, fishing, watching football on television, and scratching. Women rarely hold up their end in these vital endeavors, so guys have to carry the whole load. You’re welcome.
So this column is for you fellows who have been so busy performing periodic toenail maintenance and trimming your ear hair that you haven’t had time to shop for the Big Day, and now you’re scrambling to come up with gifts that adequately convey how very much you care about the loved ones in your lives. A set of jumper cables from the local auto parts store or a tasteful collection of your used drill bits can often fall short, even if suitably wrapped and beribboned. And you can forget that shoe tree you plan to build your wife from the scrap lumber behind the garage. Nothing says ‘I forgot about you’ like a tasteless, handmade gift slapped together at the last minute.
Fortunately, you need not despair, at least not quite yet. There’s still time to order gifts before December 25. Of course, there isn’t time to actually receive anything between now and Christmas, but you can’t have everything. I realize this doesn’t help, but I also realize it’s not my fault you’re a procrastinating idler.
Maybe next year you’ll start a little earlier. If you’re lucky, Amazon.com may still offer their inflatable toast, for people who want toast, but don’t have a toaster—or bread. Amazon’s inflatable toast, I have to admit, is some really nice looking toast. It’s what I’d call perfect toast, except for that fact that it’s made of vinyl, and therefore probably doesn’t taste too good. On the up side, it will last pretty much forever, as long as you don’t puncture it.
Amazon also offers the Pizza Pouch, which is a triangle-shaped pocket made of clear plastic you can stick a slice of pizza in. It has a cord so you can hang it around your neck. Who wouldn’t want one of those? OK, pretty much everybody.
Lastly, as far as Amazon is concerned, is the Squirrel Buster Squirrel Caller, which makes a lot of squirrel sounds, such as ‘alarm bark, distress scream, and gray squirrel chatter.’ I don’t know if any of those will call a squirrel, but when you’re buying gifts for someone else, it’s supposed to be the thought that counts. This gift says, ‘I thought I had more time to buy gifts.’
My personal recommendation, though, is the Catterbox, from The Temptation Lab, which is a cat collar with a device on it that actually translates cat meows into human speech! Which humans can understand! If they’re human! I know this is a real device because I saw a video of it on Facebook, and whenever a cat wearing the collar would meow, the translation was shown in a caption right on the screen. The perfect gift for the cat lover on your list, provided they’re human.
Bear in mind that each of these gift ideas come with my personal guarantee. If, for any reason, any of these gifts falls short of expectations, just return it to its original packaging and mail it to Donald Trump. I personally guarantee he won’t like it any better than you did.
But look on the bright side. Christmas is still a few days away. Armageddon is not entirely out of the question . . .
Kendal Hemphill is an outdoor humor columnist and public speaker who does his best shopping at the last minute. That’s the only time he shops. Write to him at [email protected].