It’s Not “Last Minute” Yet

So STOP telling me it is.

Closeup portrait worried stressed in a hurry young woman wearing red santa claus hat holding clock g...

In need of a last-minute gift? Great last-minute Christmas gift ideas! Last-minute deals for everyone on your list. This is what all of my promotional emails have been saying to me since before Thanksgiving. And while I appreciate the bald deviousness that goes into working in marketing and PR, I have to publicly pump the brakes on this scheme before it poisons both of us with enough anxiety that we end up buying Theraguns. It is not “last minute” yet.

It is not.

It is December 8. December 25, the date of Christmas, will not arrive for more than two weeks. While this may not allow for enough time to buy something with custom embroidery and have it shipped from Paris (and I do hope you remembered to do this for me in advance) it is enough time to find and acquire normal gifts. A nice blanket. A tea set. Fuzzy booties. A custom-made, working Clocky replica that you buy the parts for today and assemble over the next two weeks.

Please, loyal consumer — take a breath. The Christmas anxiety you’re feeling right now is not warranted; it was created by the barbaric Christmas gift industry to trick you into panic-buying garbage. And we already have a lot of warranted anxiety on our plates, like … pretend I’m giving you a list of terrible things: this thing, this thing, this thing. All of those things, and you’re expending extra anxiety on buying Christmas gifts, even though you have an abundance of time to do so? No.


To help, I’ve color-coated a December anxiety calendar for you.

Shutterstock; illustration: Kelly Conaboy

Green is no anxiety, and as you can see the no anxiety period extends all the way to December 17, the date before the final pre-Christmas weekend. Hooray for you; this is excellent news. I can feel your shoulders un-tensing as I type. Of course, though, the pressure is on that weekend, and that’s why it’s a sort of brown color. The brown unfortunately quickly transitions to red on December 21, indicating that anxiety is now warranted. Now you don’t have a lot of time to shop. Now you’re traveling. Now you will experience stress even when you pay $75 to have something shitty shipped “overnight,” because who knows if it’ll actually get there in time.

Then on December 25 you can see I’ve written “oh no!,” and that’s because now it’s Christmas. If you don’t have gifts by this date, I’m sorry to tell you that you’ve run out of time. Now you have to do an e-gift card, which is actually probably more useful to the gift-receiver than whatever crap you were gonna get anyway. So. I guess ultimately you never have to worry.

The point is that it’s not last minute yet, and I demand that all ads stop insisting to me that it is. I hate you for doing this. And I will never forget. Thank you.