The gift for someone who has everything

Whenever I think of someone who is hard to buy presents for, I think of the birthday present my grandpa received when I was young.

A friend of his gave him a turd in a box. I was horrified. Why would anyone want poop for their birthday? It was a fake, plastic turd, but still, it was a turd.

My grandpa loved jokes, and he probably enjoyed opening that present, but at the time, I had no concept of how that gift could ever be a good idea.

Now that I’m the principal gift-buyer in our household, that turd in a box doesn’t seem like such a bad idea. I mean, what do you get for someone who has everything? You could go the route of donating to a cause, but let’s face it, some recipients don’t understand charity, which is a shame.

Remember George Costanza from “Seinfeld” and his creation of the Festivus Human Fund in response to another character giving money in his name to charity? “He got me a piece of paper saying, ‘I’ve given your gift to someone else!’ “

If you have a “George” around or feel like you must give someone a present to open, I’ve gone through the trouble of identifying some gifts that I think are as bad or worse than a turd in a box. Please don’t take offense if you’ve given or received these gifts.

Anti-fart underwear. Yes, you read that correctly. These high-tech undies, manufactured by Japanese company Deoest, were designed for people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome. They’ve attracted a much wider following since their release.

At 3,200 yen a pair (roughly $38), you gain greater freedom to do whatever you want in public places. Using nanotechnology, ceramic fibers are woven into the fabric and help trap the stink.

Now, the problem with giving these as a gift is that it doesn’t say, “I know you love technology,” as much as it says, “Dear lord, stop stinking up the house/office/car, etc.” Merry Christmas!

The Dipr. This utensil is a spoon designed to fit in the notch between the cookie layers of an Oreo, to make it easy to dip in milk.

I’ve been waiting for this all my life: a tool to dunk Oreo cookies! Oh wait, I already have two of those. They’re called my HANDS. And they don’t cost $2.99 apiece.

But your hands get sticky and might get in the milk. Oh dear. Generations of kids will miss out on learning how to dunk Oreos from their parents. Nabisco’s classic advertising message of bonding between parents/grandparents and kids over how to properly dunk Oreos will be obsolete. They’ll just sit around dunking their Oreos the exact same way, being bored.

“Join the dunking revolution and collect all 5 colors today!” says

Wine bottle couture. You can’t take a naked wine bottle to your neighbor’s holiday party! Geez, didn’t you know that clothes for wine bottles are all the rage?

For only $7.99 you can buy a little suit, fur coat or tie for your bare-looking beverage. You’ve got to make sure your bottle is dressed for the party, where people just want to drink what’s inside. If you must, check out the outfits at

To go with it, why not buy a unicorn corkscrew from Target? As the box says, “At last — a unicorn corkscrew!” Yeah! Where has that been all my life? Somehow this flimsy, awkward-looking contraption will work its magical unicorn powers on my wine bottle that’s dressed to the nines!

Weird coin banks. If someone gave me a weird bank, I’d want the money they spent on the bank, not the bank itself. One of the worst has to be the “Fanny Bank,” where you put the coins in a plumber’s crack and you’re rewarded with a rude farting sound, for only $14.95 at

Or you could go with something less crude and creepier and get Banpresto’s money box Facebank. Basically, it’s a box with a rubber face on it. A sensor in the bank actually sees you coming with a coin and anticipates receiving the money. Then it “chews” the coins and burps. The first version of the face banks were strangely primate-like. The new ones have creepy cat faces ready to eat your money. And maybe your face while you’re sleeping. Find them at

Somehow, grandpa’s fake turd doesn’t look so bad anymore.

Erin McIntyre is a writer, master gardener and owner of the gourmet pickle company, Yum Pickles. Email her at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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