Is there anything other than “last-minute” shopping anymore? Every year, the holiday rush—the time by which, if you haven’t gotten your presents yet, ho ho, better get crackin’!—seems to begin earlier and carry an additional degree or two of scorn. How could you wait so long to take care of your loved ones? The harangue now starts before Thanksgiving.
We at The Daily Beast seek to provide a counterweight to all this sanctimony. If you managed to resist the pulls of Black Friday, Super Saturday, and Cyber Monday; if you’ve skipped the flash sales, the smartphone comparison-shopping, the newfound consumer obsession with “ Bogo”; if, in other words, you successfully avoided joining in on the 7.8 percent retail sales growth for the three-month period ending in November—then we salute you. And we’re here to help.
You don’t need to go out early to be a good gift-giver. You don’t need to go out at all. For the truly busy, defiant or lazy out there, we hereby present an Extremely Last Minute Holiday Gift Guide, featuring thoughtful prezzies for everyone on your list. All require minimal movement. All look like you gave them way more thought than you actually did. So sit back and relax. It’ll be our little secret.
This isn’t even a challenge. How about a handmade bicycle for your boyfriend, a pair of kicks with your mother’s name on them, a crocheted throw-pillow reminding your loved ones that, even around the holidays, “ Nothing Tastes as Good as Skinny Feels.” Five days before Christmas, basically the entire e-commerce universe is at your disposal. We recommend this gold retainer necklace for that middle-school crush you’ve been stalking on Facebook. It’s the perfect way to say, “Remember when I sat behind you in Mrs. Johnson’s seventh-grade biology class? No? Well, anyway, this reminded me of you.”
Hate your family? Why not gift them with candor this year—a Cast of Vices pharmaceutical charm bracelet for your pill-popping aunt; a lewd engraved flask for the budding alcoholic; a United Bamboo cat calendar for that Man Repeller on your list, who’s already turning into quite the pretty cat lady. Conversely, you could be nice (’tis the season!). Absolutely everyone would like a massage. Click, pay, print, done.
Still pretty easy, thanks to the miracle of Federal Express. If you’ve got some coin, a gift certificate to Porsche driving school might make a nice gift for the road hog in your life. Or for that special lady, how about a $1,595 J. Crew icicle dress? For a real splurge, there’s always a full Cindy Sherman Madame de Pompadour (nee Poisson) dinner service in one of four color options, for $8,500? And Rodarte is doing some lovely draping this season. Don’t forget to choose two-day delivery!
Here’s a thought: Maybe it really is the thought that counts. Unless you’re a chef or a homemaker, it’s probably been a while since you cooked a truly decadent spread for the person or people you love. Why not visit chef’s mecca Food52.com and plan out a nice meal. The kind folks at FreshDirect.com (or your local e-grocery) will deliver the ingredients by Christmas Eve, and you can get cooking. Monkey gingerbread in bed Christmas morning? Bay scallop chowder for lunch? While you’re at it, maybe book a visit from organic cleaning service Zen Home Cleaning to come tidy up whatever mess you make.
And if you are a chef or a homemaker, how about a fancy dinner out? OpenTable.com: three clicks and you’re done.
It’s the day before Christmas. We admire your grit. One word for you: bacon.
A number of yuppie butchers have started bacon-of-the-month clubs, and really, who wouldn’t want this as a present? The Pig Next Door has two options, “traditional” and the more upscale “heirloom.” What are you, crazy? Go with heirloom. And if bacon’s not your thing, how about SendLiquor.com’s scotch- or tequila-of-the-month clubs? Or an old-fashioned book? It’s like Christmas 12 times a year.
Christmas morning? Bravo, sir/ma’am. Take out your credit card, go to StubHub.com, and buy a block of seats to an upcoming concert or sporting event with the “Download Now” option, enough for everyone on your list. Pay, print. Merry Christmas!