No ducking clue what to give your friends?

Christmas is the season that divides the world into two categories:
1. people that know what to get their friends, and
2. people who spend the morning staring at rubber ducks.

I am now both. Here’s what I have gleaned from my internet voyage:

Yes, ducks are a little baffling to give anyone over the age of 5.

But they’re also perfect for some Very Specific Friends almost every group  has.

1. The poop emoji friend. Everyone has a bud who likes to talk about their… output. Or they’re constantly ducking out of things because their tract is at it again. Give those open books some poop ducks.

2. The pointedly anti-establishment friend. Rubber duckies tend to have a shape and size. A convention, if you will. Give your fun-loving, free-spirit, Zooey-Deschanel friend some odd ducks. The one who fancies himself a sleek intellectual would probably prefer the Kid O Floating duck.

3. The friend who gives you medical advice without any qualifications to do so. Expand on all their fake knowledge with an anatomical duck.

4. The friend who you think might have voted for Trump. Everyone has one. Let them know you may one day forgive them with a Make Bathtime Great Again duck.

5. The friend who’s religious. Throw ’em a bone. Let them celebrate the True Reason For The Season with a religious duck. I like the Moses duck.

6. Your least klutzy friend. Some people don’t live in fear of stairs, heels, uneven sidewalks, or dropped banana peels. Those people are living their best lives. Get them a Swarovski Punk Duck.


How To Make Shrunken Head Christmas Ornaments

I found a note in my sketchbook that says “Shrunken heads are the size of Christmas ornaments.

It’s my handwriting. I must’ve put it there.

What was I thinking?


Was it just a note about relative size — or an idea for an amazing blog post? “DIY shrunken heads for a grim tree“?

Yes. Let’s make that post.


To be honest with you, I’m not sure how actual shrunken heads are made. I imagine it goes as follows:

  • Slay your enemy.
  • Skin his skull.
  • Put the resulting skin… in front of a shrink ray?
  • Fill it with Poly-Fil®.
  • Spritz it with Febreze® whenever it gets funky.

But murdering people is pretty gauche, so let’s make some artistic ones instead.

U-G-L-Y, You Don’t Have No Alibi!

As the days get short and the weather gets nippy, one article of normcore clothing slays all others and steals their power.

The Highlander.

The Ugly Christmas Sweater.

No longer relegated to grandmothers and elementary-schoolmarms, the sweater has been co-opted by hipsters. They openly mock the older generation’s veneration of this seasonal atrocity.

When the trend began, the sweater had to be thrifted. Fighting other desperate twentysomethings at Goodwill in December was a rite of passage. One needed a heinous example of the Genuine Article.

Now ugly Christmas items are generated by designers, on computers, and screen printed onto tees. Prefabricated ones in different themes are everywhere. You can get ugly Christmas sweaters with robots, dinosaurs, Birthday Jesus, or NFL teams. You can even get one that says “Shitter’s Full.” (It’s from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.)

I’ve spent the last week at work focusing my attention on crafting a Penn State themed one. I took tiny v’s and assembled them, v by v, into designs that looked like snowmen, reindeer, snowflakes, trees, etc. Here’s the resulting hideous baby. I rather love it.

I bought one for my grandmother, and she told me with watery eyes that it was beautiful.

Here are some more things Nana would cry over.


Reindeer earrings, $28; Christmas fascinator, $45; Wine bottle holder, $27; Cat shirt, $12-20; Leggings, $15; Holiday Nikes, $250-300ish; and my Penn State Holiday Crew, $20-24.

I think mostly she would cry over the price of the Nikes. They’ve been discontinued, but still.

As Flight of the Conchords pointed out, Why are we still paying so much for sneakers, when you got them made by little slave kids? What are your overheads?

Shopping at the Goodwill is definitely cheaper.

Christmas Suggestion For Difficult People: Boozy Bounty

Stuck this Christmas on what to get the drunk who has everything? 

Your solution is here: Fancy drinking stuff.

It works for everyone! During the holidays, even people who don’t typically drink may turn to the sauce to survive family gatherings.

These gifts may go a long way.


1. Let’s start easy: this Gluggle Jug ($46.50) can pour any liquid you’d like. I imagine most people actually use it for water. It makes a fabulous “glug glug” noise when poured as air and water slosh through it.

2. Whoa. Change gears. Let’s go handmade, recycled, and fancy with this $230 triangular wine rack. I like the fact that the bottom holds glasses.

3. Want rustic without actually paying money? Is your intended recipient, perhaps, a redneck? Then this aptly-titled Redneck Wine Glass may be just right. It’s made in the USA (rednecks love that) and is touted as a “great gift for guys.” I’d like to take a moment to publicly call out guys. One can get a chick food, wine, something sparkly, etc. What does one get a guy? DAMMIT, WHAT DOES ONE GET A GUY? Y’all are difficult to shop for. People are turning to Redneck Wine Glasses. You deserve it, you cryptic douchebags. ($11.80 each). 

(As you can see, I am using this blog space to take out some of my marital frustration.)

4. Personal opinion: one might have to be drunk to think the Zodiac makes any sense whatsoever. If, however, you have a loved one who believes in all this hoo-ha, you can get them a $24.50 stopper in their month of choice. I actually think these are really beautiful. The only downside is that there’s no Ophiuchus.

5. Prank: get your giftee tipsy before opening this gift, then insist there’s nothing wrong off about the bottle‘s shape at all. See how long you can hold a straight face. $10.

6. I know there are two slumped glass items in here, but I’m really into that right now. This cheese plate ($29) is one of a variety of alcohol styles available online. This says, “Yeah, I drink. But let’s focus on getting our calories from cheese right now.”

As a sort of depressing closing note, despite the “little problem” joke, alcoholism is serious business. If someone’s “little problem” is actually a “big problem,” please get them help instead of giving them hilarious gifts. We don’t need any more incidents like this. Hypothermia is a gift no one wants to receive.