Thursday, December 6, 2012

1st Annual Yankee Swap Gift Guide

Yankee Swap, White Elephant, whatever you call it, the time is upon us, friends. The time when we go to huge parties coporate or otherwise and exchange awkward gifts that we hope all will have the sense of humor to appreciate. Or give up entirely and buy a handle of booze. BUT THERE IS NO NEED TO GIVE UP because I'm here for you. I understand the modern person's need for a great, hilarious yankee swap gift that will be both coveted and inexpensive. Effortless yet perfect. I have rounded up several examples of such gifts from our fair dungeon's shelves. Stop in, spend only a few dollars for another year of laughs or at least appropriately humorous or interesting wares that we will happily wrap for you free of charge and send you on your way to a sure bet of holiday celebrationism.

First, for the party of smarties, The Interrogative Mood by Padgett Powell. A book written entirely in questions. Quick to explain to a party, a fascinating conversation starter, funny, weird. $7.50. Nailed it.

The Lone Ranger Pop-Up Book, in time for that wacky new Johnny Depp movie this one would be great at a party where the nostalgia factor might really convince your boomer boss to give you that 110% raise you've requested. Moving parts, awesome details, and not to mention all the 3D action without those cheap glasses. A bit of an investment but worth every penny at $25.

According to legend, Napoleon found an oracle in an Egyptian tomb, it later became one of his prized possessions and he frequently consulted it before his most "speculative and successful enterprises." For less than $20 ($14.50) you can give the gift of history AND prescience in one slim volume. In it are the keys to weather omens, palm reading, what your moles and dreams mean and much much much more.

For $5 you can give the gift of David Shrigley. An awesome collection of hilarious outsidery art in postcard format this will be highly coveted among The Young and Smart set. Your redneck brother might even love it.(Mine does).

The Big Book of Magic is a great pick for just about any sort of party, they're really easy to do and understand tricks, er, I mean illusions that you can do with coins or string or very few props. Accessible to all ages and chock full of super retro line illustrations. Snatch it up for $8 before it disappears in a secret compartment in the bottom of a hat!

The Riffology of AC/DC might be a great gift for your roommates who have terrible taste in music, karaoke enthusiasts, or a passive aggressive comment toward your coworker who wears shorts at inappropriate times of the year. Either way, this is a ROCKIN' gift that people will fight for and it's only $13.

And finally, saving the BEST FOR LAST is Where to Go and What to Do When You're Single and Living in and Around Boston for a mere $4.50. This book was printed in 1985, it's chock full of kitschy art deco illustrations and (mostly though not entirely) outdated suggestions for meeting people and dating in the Boston metro area. So awesome, it's a historical snapshot of our fair city and a cultural portrait of being single in the age of Bret Easton Ellis, Madonna and Miami Vice.

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