WHAT IS THE PURPOSE of giving holiday gifts--truly?
Some may postulate that the gift one receives directly reflects the feelings held by the person doing the giving. However! If this is indeed the case, then why, may I ask, did my own sister give me tube socks for Christmas last year? Other than the time when I was nine years old and shoved her face-first into 10 inches of wet cement, I've always felt my sister and I have enjoyed an emotionally distant, yet loving relationship. And still, I get tube socks.

Please. Don't make the callous, hurtful mistake my very own flesh and blood made. While my sister may be happily oblivious to the mental anguish she inflicted upon my fragile psyche with those stupid, fucking tube socks--you are smarter than she is. Way smarter. And the reason why you're smarter is because you KNOW that your gifts should not only signify the love you have for that person, but should also reflect on a deep, even cellular level, who that person is.

For example, let's say that the person on your gift-giving list is... ohhhh... I don't know. A television lover. Are you going to buy that person a new television? Hell, NO! And it's because a new television is a gross misrepresentation of the actual person (and besides, you don't love them that much!). A television is merely the messenger by which the television lover gets what they really need--the actual television shows. So to give someone a new television is like giving a pizza-lover a Domino's delivery boy (which is only okay if he happens to be sexy).

See, what the television-lover really wants, needs and lusts after is... television merchandise. And not those stupid Frasier coffee mugs, or ER mouse pads either! If you really love your television-lover, then you'll buy him/her the memories he/she could never afford as a child. The Punky Brewster Tea Set. Pee-Wee Herman's Billy Baloney ventriloquist doll. Or maybe even the following neato items...

Nothing says, "Aww, man! That's fuckin' AWESOME!" like action figures from the early '80s cartoon, The Transformers. These "robots in disguise" may come from another planet, but they fit in just fine, as they can "transform" into cars and trucks to jam up our already clogged freeways! Billy Galaxy's on Burnside has a wide variety of these terrific 'bots, including Megatron, Hot Rod, Bumblebee, and (my personal fave) Optimus Prime. Down with the Decepticons!

Available at: Billy Galaxy, 912 W Burnside
Price: $13 to (wow!) $297

If you're anything like me, you love sitting on that big, fat juicy-fruit and watching you some Days of Our Lives. In fact, sometimes I'll spend so much time watching video-taped re-runs of Days, that I'll develop open seeping wounds on my delicate, flattened bottom. But help is on the way, thanks to Days of our Lives Dish Towels! Handsomely embossed with the Days' hourglass logo, these fringed terry cloth cotton hand towels practically scream, "Would Caroline Brady let her sink fill up with crusty, egg-covered dishes? Get up, loser! There's chores to be done!"

Available at: www.soapoperastore.com
Price: $2.95

Now the Six Million Dollar Man action figure is great, because not only does he sport a sexy all-denim jumpsuit, but he can also lift an engine block, and he has a really weird "bionic eye." In fact, there's a hole in the back of his head where you can peek through the bionic eye, and see people without their clothes on! (Okay, not really, but wouldn't it be great?)

For the more pragmatic Bionic Man-lover in your life, perhaps you should buy them the Six Million Dollar Man Poncho. Made out of bright yellow 100% vinyl, this heavy-duty poncho wipes clean with a damp cloth, has a great picture of Steve Austin in action, and says, "Hey, I may not have bionic powers, but at least I'm not getting rained on, asshole!"

Six Million Dollar Man Action Figure: Billy Galaxy, 912 W Burnside
Price: $35

Six Million Dollar Man Poncho: Dr. Tongue's 3-D House of Collectible Toys, 1408 E Burnside
Price: $25

Remember when getting super drunk or beating your wife was hilarious? Well, revisit those rib-tickling days of yesteryear with The Best of the Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts. Honored guests like Jackie Gleason, Lucille Ball, and Johnny Carson are endlessly insulted on a deep, personal level by celebrity pals such as Don Rickles, Ruth Buzzi, Jonathan Winters, and the king of drunken comedy, Foster Brooks. It's the perfect gift for those who like to tell "My wife is so stupid" jokes, or insult the size of their boss' penis.

Available at: www.buyitontheweb.com
Price: $9.95 (for a limited time only)