Late shopper stuck with limited options

Published 10:37 am Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I definitely hope that you are not like me and have finished your Christmas shopping.

Breaking tradition, I failed to take my normal shopping day this past Saturday due to a butt load of work here at the office as we prepare to cram five days into four, publish four newspapers and a Christmas Greeting section packed full of hundreds of Letters to Santa from local children.

Because I refuse to put my life at stake and shop on Christmas Eve, it looks like I’m limited to Friday, Dec. 23 to venture out and perform this annual gift purchase adventure.

But what if the shelves have been plucked bare by those smart enough to get their shopping done before the crazies come out. What do I do with limited choices? What if I actually have to take some time and shop? Yikes!

Perhaps I’ll be forced to purchase an item such as Sudoku Toilet Roll Paper. We all know that having a “sit down” on the toilet can be a time consuming and boring process. Some people read, others sing. Why not pass that time by playing Sudoku with your “striking” paper? It’s the perfect gift for the person who has everything!

How ‘bout a dozen Ice Shot Glasses. They were once all the rage at pubs and clubs. In a nutshell, these neat little items are nothing more than a mold that you fill with water, pop in the freezer and – wham, bam – a frozen glass that you can use to serve up anything liquid…as long as it’s not hot coffee, if you know what I mean.

Perhaps my brother would like a “Dress For Dinner Napkin.” That’s right, for the guy who likes to wear a tie for dinner (well, that’s really not my brother’s style…but what the heck, it’s a gift, ain’t it) nothing is more practical than this handy item.

A recent study performed by researchers at the Institute of Laundry Science revealed that 45% of all men stain their neckties when they eat. Most likely you, too, have ruined a favorite necktie with a splash of marinara sauce or a drip of Bordeaux.  We’ve all tried tucking a napkin into our shirt, but this technique saps our dignity. We may as well be wearing a baby’s bib.

“Dress For Dinner Napkins” is a brilliant solution to the problem. They’re high-quality paper napkins with neckties printed on them. So when you tuck it into you shirt collar, it looks like you’re wearing a stylish tie.

You get 20, 3-ply napkins in each package and there are four different necktie designs. Perhaps we should consider choosing a tie that matches the food we’re likely to splash on it.

If all else fails, perhaps a simple gift card will suffice. I just need to make sure it’s not one from a retail outlet considering bankruptcy.

Merry Christmas…Happy Hanukkah…Blissful Kwanzaa to one and all!


Cal Bryant is the Editor of the Roanoke-Chowan Publications. He can be reached at or 252-332-7207.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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