Here’s what you don’t want in your stock­ing

Time for an update on the gift list from hell, and BIANCA CA­PA­ZO­RIO’S got your num­ber

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - LIFE -

WE’VE all had that moment when we’ve ripped the wrap­ping off a Christ­mas gift and the only re­sponse you can muster is “oh”. This year, Week­end Ar­gus has com­piled a list of the top 20 worst Christ­mas gifts, so you don’t turn those jolly “ho, ho, hos” into “ohs”. Any­thing Christ­mas-themed. The prob­lem with any­thing Christ­mas-themed is that 24 hours later, it’s au­to­mat­i­cally use­less. That in­cludes clothes. No home­made Santa jumpers. Ever! Not even for your grand­kids. They’d rather have an iPod. A foot spa. If you want the woman in your life to have a gift that will stay in its box, gather dust and take up space, then buy her a foot spa. She’ll use it a max­i­mum of five times be­fore she re­alises she would rather have had a voucher for a pedi­cure in­stead. A leaf blower. The male foot spa, re­ally. He’ll run around the gar­den blow­ing at ev­ery­thing, in­clud­ing the dog, for the first few days, but by New Year the nov­elty will have worn off. Bub­ble bath, bath salts, etc. Un­less you know some­one who re­ally likes this kind of stuff, stay away from it. It screams im­per­sonal. Also, some peo­ple pre­fer to shower, or don’t have baths, ren­der­ing your gift use­less. Silly gadgets. This in­cludes USBpow­ered cof­fee cup warm­ers. If it makes you say “oh wow, I didn’t know there was a thing for that”, you prob­a­bly shouldn’t buy it. Kitchen ap­pli­ances. Un­less the per­son is a real foodie, stay away from kitchen ap­pli­ances. Also, just be­cause your wife says she needs a new iron, it doesn’t mean she wants one for Christ­mas. Ex­er­cise equip­ment. Enough said. Pets. You know the drill. A pet is for­ever. Socks and han­kies. Han­kies are gross. Socks are avail­able all year round. Vu­vuze­las. You know why. Noisy toys for kids. Un­less you’re not par­tic­u­larly fond of the par­ents, in which case may I sug­gest you have a look at num­ber 10 on this list. Or­na­ments. In par­tic­u­lar, shiny ce­ram­ics with corny mes­sages. But just to be safe, stay away from these al­to­gether. Com­pletely in­ap­pro­pri­ate gifts. Think food bas­kets con­tain­ing bil­tong for the veg­e­tar­ian in your life, or choco­late-cov­ered nuts for the guy with the nut al­lergy. Def­i­nitely not cool. Crude braai aprons. Yes, there are still com­pa­nies that make those. En­gage­ment rings. There is a lot of pres­sure on peo­ple to say yes to mar­riage pro­pos­als when they’re made in front of a large crowd of fam­ily mem­bers. And when said fam­ily mem­bers are all stuff­ing their faces with turkey, it kind of de­tracts from the love and hap­pi­ness. Christ­mas gifts for your pet. It’s silly. Also in­cluded, Christ­mas elf out­fits and rein­deer horns for them to wear on the day. Elec­tric tooth­brushes. Noth­ing says “I love you” more than a gift that says “I wish you’d brush your teeth more”. Nose hair trim­mers fall into this cat­e­gory too. Cal­en­dars. They’re re­ally rather dull. Be­sides, you can get them from most phar­ma­cies for free. There is a de­vice called a potty fisher. Ba­si­cally it al­lows you to sit on the loo and fish for plas­tic fish in a bowl at your feet. Do not buy this. Ever! Self-help books. Even if you think they desperately need the help. They should ac­tu­ally be called “self-bought books”.

NO-NO: If you’re think­ing of giv­ing a vu­vuzela as a Yule­tide present, don’t.

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