In the midst of the holiday season we tend to get caught up in the commercialism of it all. We feed into the materialism of gift-giving. The bombardment of advertisements and appeal of sales instill even more pressure to find those perfect presents for our loved ones. As the years go by we heighten the importance of exchanging expensive material items in the interest of expressing love and appreciation.
I buy into it, typically, because I feel compelled. The notion of gift exchange seems almost ethically enforced. It’s as though we’re required to purchase jewelry for our lovers, semiautomatic weapons for our brothers, top-shelf booze for our friends, and Moesha complete series boxed-sets for our sistahs. Of course, this can all run up a hefty bill.
The holidays don’t need to burn a hole in your pocket. So how can we save bread during the holiday season, you ask? I have a slew of money-saving techniques to help you make it through Christmas without spending every last dollar of your pot money. Read through my guide, take a suggestion or two, and you’ll be sure to have a fun, cost-effective holiday.
1. Write a poem. Take all that love you hold for someone and force it into artistic writing. It’s from the heart. It shows you care. Best of all, your broke ass doesn’t have to spend a cent. I’ve been writing poems for my mom year after year, and she almost still values it.
2. Make your own card. Here’s what I’ve always done for my father: I take a blank sheet of printer paper. I fold it – hamburger style, baby. Then I put my creative skills to use by cartooning and creating my own witty card. My advice is to incorporate inside jokes or things very personal to the friend or family member who you’re making the card for. Perhaps your dad has a drinking problem? Draw a man getting carted away in a paddy wagon with an empty liquor bottle in hand. That’s cute, close-to-home, and entirely free!
3. Design your own jewelry. Get crafty! Why drop thousands on something elegant and beautiful when you can just throw some stuff together? Try a necklace made of fingernails, or a bracelet twined from your excess under-thigh hair. Regardless of the final product, you’ve crafted with endearment.
4. Hit up Dollar Tree. Breaking news about The Dollar Tree, guys: Everything’s a dollar! It doesn’t get much better. Plus the store offers a wide assortment of good shit. You have options like: Tupperware, fly swatters, reading glasses, sun hats, Rice-A-Roni, pest-control products, cap guns, wastebaskets, and even toilet brushes! Strut through the aisles with a $5 bill in hand and go wild.
5. Tell people you’re overwhelmingly selfish. When you’re obsessively concerned with yourself and your own interests it’s nearly impossible to give a damn about others. If your loved ones genuinely care for you they’ll be understanding.
6. Write a song. Put those thoughts of fondness into a club banger. All you need is a trunk-rattling beat, cheap recording software, and the ability to flow and spit bars on the mic. Actually you’ll need a microphone as well. Once you have all that you’re ready to drop a heartwarming track for the streets. Your partner will eventually forget about that lake sunrise and butt scented candle, and those gaudy Cartier earrings. They won’t, however, forget the speaker-booming twerk anthem made specifically for them (produced by DJ Mustard.)
7. Just don’t buy shit for anyone. Hey, they never cared anyway! Where were your “friends” during that traumatic breakup when you needed them the most? When you lost your driver’s license, where were the calls and texts then? You were nothing but a taxi service to those self-seeking degenerates. All of the so-called family and friends only come around when you can benefit them in some way. I say screw the bastards! Buy yourself a small yacht and get high on pain palls. Reflect on the past. Realize that everyone’s in it for themselves. They only gave you gifts so you would subsequently treasure their existence as much as they treasure it themselves, anyway.
8. Assault a mall santa and tell all the children in line that life’s misery far outweigh its happiness and contentment.
Disclaimer: Do NOT do anything I just said, unless it’s with love and sincerity. Dollar Tree is a solid option, though, that place is poppin’.