I believe 'Merry X-Mas' does not represent an attempt to remove Christ from Christmas, as a matter of fact-it represents an entirely different holiday:
XANAX-mas-The Celebration of Prescription Medications During the Holidays.
Most of us started celebrating the X-Mas holiday around Thanksgiving time as increased interaction with our families was required. I know, I know, Christmas is a sneaky little booger-It always seems to sneak up on the best of us the same time every year. Now we're down to the final stretch-just a couple days before Christmas. For those of us who haven't started Christmas shopping yet, you're most likely either:
1) A procrastinator
2) A lazy slacker
3) Void of all time and space around you
These things are not evil in of themselves, but if you're expected to be around people on Christmas Day, we're going to need to work a miracle posthaste so grab your prescription meds, the eggnog and your skill or you'll have a Blue, Blue, Blue Christmas!
The first thing you need to do is to get on board. Think about it-even if you hate commercialized holidays, you're about to look like a total Grinch showing up to someone's house with nothing for a free meal and probably gifts. Even if you don't support the holidays, let's spare your reputation being burnt up like an out of control Yule Log.
Good, now that you get it, let's do this. First of all, gift getting is not that difficult. Pick a target, figure out what they like and go get it. You've got to be careful though. At this point, there are plenty of last-minute shoppers like you and I, and traffic at the malls is a bear. You can lose the Christmas spirit pretty quickly when you have to get out of the car and open a can of it on someone. If you're local mall is a hellacious, snarling mess, you may want to head to free-standing stores that aren't near any mall. There are plenty of great deals still out there-find one.
Shopping online is still a possibility believe it or not. There are several ways to get this accomplished. It's probably too late to have it shipped, but many retailers will let you know what stores in your area have the item and secure it for you. Now all you have to do is drive there and pick it up-cutting down on hours of possible frustration roaming around mindlessly looking for an item at multiple stores. Trust me, chances are you're no wise guy and there's not going to be a star guiding you to the correct store. Other major online retailers will still allow for one day overnight shipping on select items. If you're reading this and it's too late for even that, that's ok. Many folks prefer digital gifts. These days, you can order digital codes for people who like a variety of things-Music, Movies, Apps and even video games they can download to their digital devices. The best thing about my favorite type of shopping is most of it can be done from the comfort of your home without pants while you sit in your bed and watch 'Christmas Vacation' for the 200th time.
If none of that sounds possible, while you're out shopping-you may want to buy some self-confidence. Although it sounds grim-you still have some options. If you just can't deal with the pressure and you need a refill on your meds at a pharmacy, guess what? They have Christmas cards and gift cards right there to pick up while your prescription to cope is being filled. It may seem like a haphazard effort, but let's face it-it is. You're probably desperate at this point, so something is better than nothing. Gift cards are a plethora and most folks won't bat an eye at getting one. Let's be honest-most gifts are just individually wrapped little tasks to return something to a store...especially the clothing items. Your friends and family that feel the way I do welcome a gift card. Whether it's credit toward a retailer or a restaurant, it's difficult to go wrong with a gift card and they're available almost anywhere.
The last quickie possibility for a gift I'll offer is elaborate food items at grocery stores or large outlets. Most folks enjoy adult beverages to add to their eggnog or maybe eggnog to add to their adult beverages-your perspective usually depends on the degree of your family's dysfunction. Many folks prepare an elaborate meal for the holidays and usually appreciate some last minute additions or side items. Do yourself a favor and ask what you can bring especially if you're invited to the meal. I'd recommend against buying dry sticks of meat from a kiosk in the mall or signing your host up for The Jelly of the Month Club, but what do I know? Beggars can't be choosers.
If you decide you can't, won't or simply refuse to do any of the aforementioned suggestions to obtain some gifts-might I suggest a few actions to avoid someone's Christmas Wrath:
1) Skip town. That's right-showing up sans gifts on Christmas day is worthy of physical or verbal abuse at best. I'd get out of Dodge while you still can.
2) Break up, become estranged or divorced from your significant other. You might as well, because you most likely won't have a place to sleep once you show up Christmas Day with no gifts. This time, Mommy really will be kissing Santa Claus under the mistletoe-and it won't be you.
3) Fake your death or some viral infectious disease. That's right. No one is going to want to see you once you show up to Christmas Day empty handed anyway-I'd rather be dead.
Whatever you do, find someone to help and love this Christmas. Many families are doing without, and many children need our help to have a Merry Christmas. If you don't have anyone to give a gift to, look up local charities in your area and make a kid's Christmas by giving to the charity of your choice. There are plenty of options and certainly a lot of folks in need. Help, love, give and have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!