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Friday, Dec. 15, 2006 | Christmas is a time of giving, but, frankly, it’s also a good time to take shots at those who’ve wronged you or just plain annoyed you during the past 12 months.
That is, if they have kids.
I admit it: There are times when I give gifts to kids that I know will irritate their parents to no end. It’s my passive-aggressive way to get the most out of the holiday season.
Now, in the interest of good karma, I’m giving back. I want all parents (even those I’ve wronged) to know the secrets to giving presents to children that, on the surface, seem thoughtful but are actually deviously horrible.
It’s not easy. It actually takes more thought and consideration than buying a gift for someone you actually like. You have to know the object of your aggression’s little quirks and trigger points.
Giving a military action figure to a kid whose dad is serving in Iraq might be perfectly acceptable but give that same toy to the child of a Cindy Sheehan supporter and you’re setting up a possible meltdown.
Here are some of the year’s most annoying gifts along with tips on who would most be annoyed by them.
“Mommy Has a Tattoo” (www.MommyHasTattoos.com)
What It Is: A children’s book about a little boy who is scared by a neighbor who is covered with tattoos. That is, until he discovers his own mom has one of those “tramp stamps” on her lower back.
Why This Is Annoying: It leaves out one slight detail: Mommy was probably drunk off her ass when she had it tattooed.
Type of Parent Most Likely To Be Annoyed By It: Conservative types; older parents; folks without tats of flaming skateboard wheels around their belly buttons.
Hide and Seek Care Bear (any major toy store)
What It Is: A Care Bear doll that can be hidden. Then a kid walks around with a remote control while a sappy voice says, “You’re getting warmer.”
Why This Is Annoying: The Care Bears are annoying enough but the talking aspect means that the recipient will definitely try playing it in the middle of the night. “You’re getting warmer. Uh oh, now, Daddy’s hot under the collar!”
Type of Parent Most Likely To Be Annoyed By It: Anyone with a brain.
Blue Man Group Keyboard Experience and Percussion Tubes (any major toy store)
What It Is: Toy musical instruments inspired by the avant-garde musical group-turned Las Vegas headliner.
Why This Is Annoying: Kids love toys that make noise and, like Hide and Seek Care Bear, they are most likely to play them in the middle of the night.
Type of Parent Most Likely To Be Annoyed By It: One that has to get up early. Really early.
Los Pollitos Dicen (www.lospollitosdicen.biz)
What It Is: A clothing line that features Spanish-speaking chicks saying “Something is stinky” in Español.
Why This Is Annoying: Generally, children’s clothing that makes a point of mentioning that kids who poop their diapers are irritating – especially to their parents.
Type of Parent Most Likely To Be Annoyed By It: Those who believe that English should be the only language spoken in the U.S.; those who feel uncomfortable calling attention to their kid’s lack of bowel control.
I Rub My Duckie (BigTeazeToys.com)
What It Is: On first glance, it looks like a pink rubber duckie. On second glance, it is a pink rubber duckie – that vibrates.
Why This Is Annoying: Because it looks just enough like a kids toy to fool parents.
Type Of Parent Most Likely To Be Annoyed By It: Parents who are trying to keep their young’uns from rubbing their own duckie in public.
Mac King’s Magic in a Minute: Cereal Thriller
What It Is: A magic trick that shows a kid how to make milk and cereal disappear instantly (without eating it).
Why This Is Annoying: Kids play with their food enough without encouraging it.
Type Of Parent Most Likely to Be Annoyed By It: Those who have finicky eaters.
The Welcome to Las Vegas Musical Sign
What It Is: A plastic replica of the Welcome to Las Vegas Sign that plays “Viva Las Vegas” when a button is pushed.
Why This Is Annoying: It’s a sign that plays “Viva Las Vegas” when a button is pushed. What more do you need?
Type Of Parent Most Likely To Be Annoyed By It: Those who shudder at the thought of their daughter pretending that Barbie is going off to Vegas for a wild weekend with G.I. Joe; those who don’t want their kids to learn the phrase, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.”
Now, these gifts are sure to annoy these particular sub-groups of parents. But if you want to get the most bang for your buck, just buy Oakland Raiders apparel.
David Moye is a La Mesa-based writer whose favorite Christmas melody is the one for “Oh, Holy Night” and his favorite Christmas lyrics are the ones for “Christmas in Jail.” He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, he will be appearing on the KUSI show, “Inside San Diego,” on Tuesday, Dec. 19.