Early Christmas Gifts For Yourself
The nature of present-giving at Christmas is changing. My friends are moving out of London. Quite a few of us now go away for the extended break. The purchase and delivery of gifts is now almost an ordeal. My brother has a connection to a farm but doesn’t live nearby, and one Christmas found our gift exchange involving the transfer of meat in a frozen car park. It was like something out of Fargo. Take children out of the equation and gift-giving suddenly seems pointless, so this year I may just give myself these;
1. I always spend a third of every summer evening attempting to relight outdoor candles when we’ve got friends over. Don’t buy a church candle with a fake light in it, try this neat little thing (above). It’s a cork with an LED that floodlights your bottle while you’re drinking, and it can be recharged from any computer. A tenner online, less in shops.
2. Buy them a book! Watch their faces sink as they realise you’re going to try and make them read! Especially if you’ve bought them JJ Abrams’ novel ‘S’, possibly the least readable novel ever assembled! My last two superb reads have been the debut novel ‘A Bright Moon For Fools’ by Jasper Gibson, about a Falstaffian rogue on the run in Venezuela, and ‘Alone in Berlin’, about a house coping with Gestapo intrusion, by Hans Fallada. The paperbacks are prettier than the e-editions, but harder to hold; ‘Alone in Berlin’ is over 600 pages.
3. It’s on trend but that shouldn’t automatically mean you don’t want one – a selfie-stick (or Monopod). They’re awkward to carry around but dammit, you’ll find yourself using it more than you ever meant to, and really it’s no less valid as a photographic tool than a tripod. Make sure you get an extendable one.
4. Gloves – ah, but not just any gloves. The latest come with conductive threads woven into them so that you can use your touch-screen devices without taking the gloves off – keep surfing, stay warm – what’s not to love?
5. These lights have been mathematically designed to throw perfect shapes. Check out the Shapeways site for many more designs, some of which are stunning, and prices are low. Shapeways is also selling all sorts of 3D printed stuff, including a tiny, tiny sad Keanu Reeves you can take anywhere!