One of the best things about waiting to the last minute to finish your Christmas shopping is discovering all those things you normally wouldn’t buy even on SkyMall. I’m not just talking about the leopard print Snuggie (still available, by the way, at RiteAid). I mean gifts that “early-bird” shoppers miss out on because they’re too busy getting everybody what they really want.
So, with less than a week before Christmas, here is my insider’s scoop on no-backorder items:
Dora the Explorer: The Lou Dobbs interview: This is actually pretty hard to watch. The former CNN anchor drills the Nick Jr. star for about an hour, until Backpack finally coughs up her birth certificate. Sigh of relief, Dora was born in the USA. But, oh, no, her real is Mary Lou. “I was a huge Mary Lou Retton fan,” her mom confesses to Dobbs. “So, it didn’t rhyme with explorer—what name does? Dora doesn’t even rhyme, not really, not unless you—“ the interview cuts off there but Lou ends the report with a very sweet heart to heart with the Grumpy Old Troll.
Bob the Builder’s got a Heck of a Lot of Debt: It’s really never too early to learn about the subprime mortgage crisis and Bob does a pretty good job explaining his toxic assets. What else is a claymation star going to do in his off time but invest in Miami real estate? The gang is supportive, though. When asked: Can they get out of the mess? Can they…fix it? It’s Scoop who utters a soft but resounding, “Yes…We Can.” Interestingly, Wendy does not seem as happy. Maybe I’m wrong, but she appeared to be packing a little clay duffle bag in one of the shots.
Teach for America Barbie: Limited Recession Edition:Who knew that even Barbie had student loans? Instead of a princess palace and sports car, this Barbie comes with a one bedroom flat and bus pass. All proceeds benefit the Mattel Corporation.
Thomas Choo Choo, Lead Paint edition: These were recalled a few years ago but I was lucky enough to find a few on Ebay. I was assured that as long as you do not let your child play with the toy, it is perfectly safe. Same goes for the wooden doll set by Melissa & Doug with a “formaldehyde complaint” sticker. (I wish I was making up this last one.)
Imagination Movers, The Calendar: Ok, I admit it. I think these guys are kind of cute. They meet my criteria (1) They are over 18. (2) They are not Muppets.
The Secret Life of Cougars: Just so you know, this is not as tantalizing as you might think. It’s written by a zoologist, not Courtney Cox.
Words that Rhyme with Tasshole: things to tell your children when you swear at the car in front of you. I was skeptical of this at first, but it’s got some good advice. There is also a section for Dads who yell things at the TV during football season.
A few folks have asked me if it’s ok to re-gift a Harry & David fruit basket and I say absolutely. After twelve months in your garage, what you have there is something completely original.
If you’re looking for something for the technically minded, nothing says I love you like a new wireless router.
But, perhaps the most amazing deal is the Amazon Kindle. They are offering a special rate of $5.99. Shipping and handling is a bit more, coming in at $250.00.
With that, all I have to say is, remember it's the thought that counts. This, of course, is problematic considering you've waited until the last minute to think of something.
Post Script: This post is part of an infrequent series called What the Parenting Magazines Won't Tell You. I hope I never offend anyone with these, but most important, I hope that even if you don't find it funny, you'll still feel a part of the conversation for the more serious posts. Different opinions--and different takes on humor--are important to me and this blog.