• A guide for the gastador bisdak: What NOT to buy as gifts for Christmas

      It's the most wonderful time of the year! Don't you just love the sight of Christmas lights and larger figures in your bank account every time December kicks in? Christmas is just one sleigh ride away, and with all these new, gigantic malls here and there, I can bet you're giving into consumerism like never before!

      Now, because many of us have fallen short of creativity and dedication towards the art of giving to others, I have compiled a number of things you SHOULD NOT consider giving as presents for the yuletide festivities.Sure, they say it's the thought that counts, but c'mon, it's 2015! Nobody likes getting calendars and greeting cards anymore. Do not be misled, it is not a requirement for your gifts to be pricey, but decency, pride and a whole lot of common sense will tell you that your gifts have to have an impact and leave a mark.

      So without further ado, here are the most common gift ideas we should all put to death now:

      Photo from Pure-Light

      1.) Picture Frames and Photo Albums. Seriously? Frames and albums are probably a staple in gift giving. We live in the digital world now, and nobody uses frames anymore. Unless it has an exceptional photo of you and/or the recipient, your gift will be useless. Besides, photo containers are cheap and if the person you're giving it to really needed them, they'd buy it themselves. We have social media now. Nobody goes to the hassle of actually printing photos unless they really mean something. Get a life and go figure.

      Photo from Makeup

      2.) Plastic Ware. Don't you just hate it when some cheapskate buys a set of plastic containers and includes it in the 'exchanging of gifts' portion of your company's year-end party? Unless you're a caterer or a chef or a recent vegan-convert, your "tupperware," as we Pinoys call it, will be useless! Students and those of the working class eat out for lunch! Nobody baons that much anymore. Give up your fantasy of making someone happy with a transparent container because it is NOT going to happen!

      Photo from Peacock Alley

      3.) Towel/Towelette/Handkerchiefs. Not unless your friend smells awful or has an odor issue and your giving of towels is the most tactful way for you to say something has to change, then don't even think about getting that buy-one-take-one promo! Why would you want to give somebody something they'll use to wipe their bodies with? What for? Is that the best you can think of? A towel? Towels as gifts are cheap and tacky, and if your friend really reeks of terror and despair, you might as well get him a bar of soap or a deodorant. The truth will set you free. Schedule an intervention if you must.

      Photo from Andrew Fuller

      4.) Christmas Baskets. Oh dear, where do I even begin with this one? Unless you're an employer or you're part of a charity case, giving a close friend or a family member a Christmas basket complete with ham and spaghetti ingredients is just not going to cut it. Is it safe to say that your receiver has just enough funds to whip up a decent Noche Buena? Then why the hell do you still want to bridge the gap of him and his Christmas Eve feast? There is no gap to begin with! You are not Gordon Ramsey. Your friend does not need to know what you think he or she should have for dinner on the 24th.

      5.) Packed Shower Gels and Lotions. If you're a dermatologist who has friends who have unforgivable skin, then you are excused. Your clinic's products will do them just fine. You are God-sent and the gift of confidence will be bestowed upon the receiving end of your generosity. But if you're not, then you have no right to give another person bathroom necessities. Sure, pharmacies think its a good way to get rid of all the excess supplies of sticky cream and whatnot, but will you really give in to that? As someone with authority and self-respect, will you really just give someone something you can buy in a pharmacy? But what if it's branded, you say? What if it's imported and sought after (*cough* Victoria's Secret *cough*)? Then that's okay. After all, it's something you can't easily purchase just anywhere. But if you ever just choose to go to the grocery and get cheap bundles of that everyday-brand-for-the-masses as a present, then you might want to re-think your morality. Just saying.

      Photo from Etsy

      6.) Mugs. You know what? I don't even know why so many people buy each other mugs for Christmas. Everybody already has glasses! As a matter of fact, so many families have more mugs than the actual people living in their homes. Our mugs-to-housemate ratio is more than healthy! Why is this even a trend for some people?! Every time I get mugs for Christmas, I always tell myself, "Oh! I'm in the you're-not-really-special-so-I'm-not-gonna-put-much-effort-into-thinking-what-to-give-you list." Do you have the creativity of a pebble? Don't you have it in you to at least get something more grand or memorable to your recipient? Since you're going to give gifts only to those who matter to you, you might as well make sure you're giving them something that's nice and Instagram-worthy!

      There you have it. A list of things nobody alive would want as Christmas presents.Here are the runners-up for the worst gift ideas: toasters, blenders, fruit cakes and/or chiffon cakes, wall clocks, alarm clocks, staplers or staple removers, low-priced perfumes and colognes from clothing stores, socks, scented candles, figurines, gift certificates of unpopular establishments, and recipe books.

      Also, a note to employers and bosses out there reading this, we do not live in the 90's anymore. Middle class laborers don't even need the free slobs of distasteful ham you so generously provide. Give your workers choices, show them a list of options they can take, provide alternatives. Think of something else other than just ham (shout out to the company I work for for doing just that)! Employees also do not get thrilled over raffling shoe racks, dish organizers, drawers, pails and dippers, basins, electric fans, portable radios and blenders anymore. Let's be real, nobody wants to walk out of the party venue, carrying a cabinet or an ice cooler. If you want your hardworking people to actually show up on your party, raffle out out tablets and smartphones and department store gift cards, heck, you can even raffle out hard cold cash! Enough with the plastic ware and enough with the bulky appliances!

      Again, remember that the list does not apply to recipients who blatantly ask for any of those written above. If your sister insists that you get her a picture frame, then by all means, buy her a dozen. If your mom makes lambing by asking for new towels, then go the extra mile and have her name embroidered. If, by any chance, your brother actually asks for bottles of lotion, then give him what he wants! Bottom line is you make others happy by giving them something meaningful.But if, by your own judgment and will, you still think of purchasing a hanky or a shower set, then, congratulations! You are now officially a certified stingy gift-giver with no zest in life.

      Bjorn Tabanera
      Contributor - Lifestyle

      *Bjorn is a Trainer and occasional events host and freelance writer.
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      Comments 2 Comments
      1. keen's Avatar
        keen -
        what, we're picky now?

        good read.
      1. jasminerivs's Avatar
        jasminerivs -
        hahahha!! People are materialistic now a days.. hehe

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