When it comes to the holidays, we all want to do our best for our family, friends, and loved ones. We want to give them gifts that show we care, items that we know they’ll enjoy, something they’ll appreciate long after the holidays are over.
That’s a pretty tall order. Personally, I’m just going to settle for something I know isn’t going to send them to the hospital this year.
In that spirit, here are some gifts that may seem like fun while you’re shopping, but can be a whole different story once they’re unwrapped.
Drones are cool. They’re like RC cars that can fly. And if that sentence doesn’t scare the crap out of you as a parent, maybe you should read it again. They’re like RC cars that can fly.
Drones are a gift you should be careful about buying for a few different reasons.
First, you need to be aware of the various regulations concerning drone usage. If that brand new drone you’re buying for the aviator in your life weights more than 250 grams, it will be subject to all of Transport Canada’s rules and limitations. So unless you want Christmas to be ruined by a nasty citation, you may want to pair that gift with a membership to a local flight club to ensure your would-be pilot has a safe place to fly where he or she won’t be fined.
Secondly, and much more pressing on Christmas morning, they’re like RC cars that fly. There is a 100% chance that a freshly unwrapped drone is going to end up stuck in the Christmas tree within an hour. Or if not the Christmas tree, then Grandma’s perm, or the turkey dinner. Take your pick. No matter where it crash lands, it won’t be good.
So if you do pick up a drone as a Christmas gift, perhaps “forget” to include the batteries?
Hoverboards are cool. Maybe not Back to the Future actually-lift-off-the-ground cool but cool enough!
They’re an interesting spin on a classic futurist idea – the personal transportation device. We might not have jetpacks or moving sidewalks yet, but we do have hoverboards. They’re the more fashionable little brother to the dorky older Segway.
They’re also a great way to flip butt over teakettle. Exhibit A:
Hoverboards might be related to the Segway, but they take a fair bit more finesse and balance to control. If you don’t have the coordination to keep both feet planted and balanced, it’s real easy to end up steering into a wall, down the basement stairs, or directly into that brand new big screen TV.
Most of us know a bad idea when we see one and would normally steer clear of an automatic skateboard, but the holidays are a different story. If you’ve had a little too much Christmas cheer, a hoverboard might just seem like a good spot of fun, and it will be – for those filming the disaster.
Save this gift for the cyber Tony Hawk in your family and keep your uncle who “used to board a little in the ’80s” far, far away.
Two (or more) Lightsabers
Look, we’re all excited for The Last Jedi. Lighsabers are rad, that’s just a fact of life. I’m not even going to pretend like the replica props you can buy of them now are anything short of amazing. They glow, buzz and hum like just like the movie, and even include hit and spark effects that simulate the excitement of one saber clashing against another. They’re the dream toy of any young Padawan.
So if you have a Star Wars nut in the family, sure, go ahead and get them one. But only ONE. One saber is a great showpiece for any fan. Two or more? A recipe for disaster.
No matter how much your children promise they’re not going to duel each other, the second you turn your back, the living room WILL be transformed into the Sarlacc pit. They might be playing nice now, but it’s only a matter of time before the little Darth Maul in your life is going to try and hack Obi-Wan in two. It’s all fun and games until someone gets a saber in the eye and you wind up spending the day in the emergency room explaining to the doctor what a Sith Lord is.
Every year some clown gets the hilarious idea of packing their Christmas cards full of glitter.
Please, don’t be that clown.
Now it’s true that the glitter itself is harmless. I can’t really imagine a situation where a handful of glitter is really going to injure somebody or burn down the house.
But I’ll tell you what is dangerous: that white hot rage of someone who spent days cleaning their home to make it visitor friendly who opens one of these babies all over the floor. Watch out!
Sending out a bunch of glitter bombs is the single best way to guarantee you end up with a stocking full of coal (a stocking your friends and family will likely take turns beating you with).
So be careful this holiday season. While the flashy toys and gizmos sure look tempting to buy for the kids, consider the possible consequences on Christmas morning. But hey, if you buy them anyway, make sure to have your smartphone camera ready to capture the action!