Holiday Gift Guide

Jordan Jewell, Entertainment Editor

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For an acquaintance:
The holidays are a time of familial and vocational obligation, and nothing demonstrates that better than the Obligatory Gift. This is the gift that you get for someone you know barely anything about. Because you’re friendly, and you’ve talked a few times, you’ve got to get them something. My best suggestion is something nice but general. Everyone could use a gift card to places like Target or Starbucks. A more personal gift could be a scarf or a holiday-themed candle. If you’re really stumped, you could always throw candy in a mason jar and stick a festive bow on top.

For a friend:
Maybe you’ve got English with them, or maybe you take swim classes together, but either way, you like them, and you’ve got to get them a Straight Up Gift. You know just enough about them to pick up a gift from the local retail store without it seeming inauthentic. A practical gift might be nice socks or a good smelling shampoo. A more flashy gift might be a formal shirt or a nice watch. Either way, you’ve got this one in the bag, though I’d recommend going shopping early, before everything’s picked over.

For a close friend:
Now here’s a gift you’re excited to get, an opportunity to show your affection and devotion to someone you really deeply care about. This is the time to get a Special Gift, a gift that means something within the context of your history, maybe hints at an inside joke. Bonus points if the gift makes them tear up. The best Special Gifts are handmade ones like jewelry, and those can be made with a simple Google search and trip to Michaels. Or, to be a little old-fashioned, mixtapes or photo albums can be a good way to pull at heartstrings.