Strings of street lights
Even stop lights
Blink a bright red and green
As the shoppers rush
home with their treasures
That was then. Now we’re online. It’s so easy to do almost all of your Christmas shopping online up to a couple of days before Christmas. Click, click, click and other than driving the brick and mortar merchants out of business I guess everyone’s happy (I like to visit the local stores to check out the items before giving them a “beback” and ordering online, I guess that kind of counts as shopping local doesn’t it?, and now I can even order online using my iPhone while I’m standing in front of their goods in their stores so I know I’m ordering exactly what I want: that’s convenience).
There is a downside to all of this though. With all of this computer magic we’ve gained we’ve lost a major part of gift giving, the best default gift that was always there to bail you out when you put off shopping to the very end. It was always the go-to gift so you didn’t have to end up like a loser in housewares at Walgreens at 10 o’clock on Christmas Eve.
What am I going to get my nephew Jimmy? What a terrific kid. Maybe I should get him ice skates or a magic set or one of those remote control airplanes or maybe a telescope. Ya, those would be really great gifts, really great, but it’s too late now to go shopping. Maybe an album.
How about Jill? She’s so sweet and I love being with her and she did get me that fantastic hiking gear last year (I got her a Chubby Checker sings The Best of Broadway album, it’s great). I know she thinks I’m about ready to pop the question so I’ll stop at Silverman’s Jewelry for that gold locket she looked at and then I’ll have it engraved with her name and a heart with my initials. She’ll absolutely love it. There’s probably not time to get the engraving done though, I think Silverman’s is closed. Maybe a couple of albums.
I used to be able to head on over to Record World or Mr. Music for those default albums. Now Record World and Mr. Music are gone and those albums that were always there to help you out are gone replaced by Spotify or iTunes or Pandora or something and that’s progress I guess. Funny how when they talk about the changes to society caused by advances in technology they never mention the loss of the best default gift.
So without an idea in my head and without a go-to default gift I walk into Walgreens at 10 o’clock on Christmas Eve. I’ll bet Jimmy will like that electric flyswatter I saw in housewares. I’ll get him one and pick one up for Jill too and maybe a jug of Eau de Walgreens. She’ll love it. Jill is so thoughtful and I’m thinking that she’ll probably get me something really nice this year. I can’t wait to see her in a little while. Oh wait, there she is now heading this way into housewares.