Holiday Gift Advice, Please

A friend is having a little holiday get-together. She does it every year (but I've never gone before.)

The invite this year adds, "Let's start a new tradition - a holiday grab bag. Bring a small gift - $10 LIMIT - the funnier the better. You have to bring a gift to get a gift."

The FUNNIER the better? $10 Limit? This is going to be tough.

I probably won't shop online, just because shipping will mess up that $10 limit, so I'm thinking I'll probably start at a toy store or something... but you're all creative. Any ideas?


  1. Oh, darn: the $10 limit is tough. I was going to recommend a statue of Jesus playing basketball with children, but it's $20, or else a tacky wedding cake topper (loving dolphins! black children dressed as hobos!), but they are exhorbitantly priced because all wedding things are.

    Maybe you could find something that tacky at a thrift store?

  2. Just to get ideas you could start looking around at Archie McPhee...they have an online store and they are one of my most favorite places for all things cheap and funny. Tiki gear? They got it! Action figures of Jesus/Beethoven/Crazy Cat Lady? Yup, they got it! Viking hats? YUP! (They even have an "Under $10" section!!)

  3. Here's an idea that should come naturally to a criminal lawyer: Just ignore the $10 limit! There's no punishment specified.

    As long as it's funny and everyone laughs, no one cares that you cheated on the price. Someone gets a really funny gift, and you get to be the cool person who gave a really funny gift. Everybody wins.

    Seriously, the $10 limit is just a polite cover so people don't feel pressured to spend a lot out of fear of appearing cheap. If you find a great gift for a little more that that, don't worry about the limit.

  4. Booze. Wine, beer or something else. May have to be a smaller bottle but can never go wrong with booze- unless you have non drinkers. Then I would go with a picture frame.

  5. If you want funny, go to Target and get the bottles of soda that taste like various foods.

    Another idea is those envelopes that have the return address that say stuff like "masturbators anonymous", etc. These are great- unless the person sends one with your name on it.

  6. How about a copy of last week's New Yorker? You know, the one that:

    1) Identified David Lat as the author of Underneath Their Robes (the consequences of which are still unknown)

    2) Had a feature article on Iranian dissident bloggers and how they are jailed and tortured.

    I thought it was a RIOT


  7. My favorite thing for those type of things is the CD with William Shatner singing. It's called Transformed Man. It's so bad it's FUNNY!. Shatner sings Mr. Tamborine Man. Shatner sings Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.

    Shatner . . . oh I don't remembert because by this point I'm laughing so hard I'm crying.

  8. If it's a largely female audience, then

    "How to Make Your Man Behave in 21 Days or Less Using the Secrets of Professional Dog Trainers"

    Oh screw it, I'm making a post

  9. There is a small electronic game called 20 Q. It is just like the old game 20 questions. It asks 20 yes or no questions and then it guesses what you are thinking of.

    It is fun to watch smart people get depressed when a $10 toy reads their mind.

    They have it at toys r us...

  10. There is a book called 'how to win friends and influence people' that is almost always at the cheap rack at B&N or Boarders. always a good gift.

  11. I once found a clock that looked like a flyswatter, with the fly as the second hand. It was about ten bucks, and humorous to see hanging on the wall. Good luck.

  12. I'm actually a pretty strict rule follower. Which is why I get so frustrated when the police and the DAs don't have to play by the rules.

    A little over budget, but I like these ideas too:

    And, I think that all of the invitees are drinkers, which means some kind of liquor or drinking accessory might be a good route too.

    I'll keep you posted.