Got to buy a present for someone you can't stand because of office politics, family BS or just plain old obligation? We've got you. Here are 10 subtle and not-so-subtle ways to tell someone you think they're a weapons-grade turdburger.
1. Instant Regret Chocolate, £7.99
Is your giftee one of those blowhards who constantly bores on about how they can eat spicier food than anyone else? Wanna make them prove it? Give them this horrible chocolate, which contains 6.4 million scovilles and is therefore guaranteed to blow their eyebrows off. Best bit: you can still pretend it was a nice thoughtful gift. "But you love spicy things! *snerk*" [Buy it here].
2. Slytherin heat reveal mug, £6
Like your giftee, this mug shows its evil side when things get heated. Again, play it off with innocence – you totes knew they were a Harry Potter fan and this is from that, right? Oh, sorry, you haven't seen the films, is that the evil side? Oops. [Buy it here].
3. 1,000-piece Minions puzzle, £11.48
Ughhhhhhhhhh. It's hard to even look at this. Not only is it Minions, it's also enormous and pointlessly hard. Why does this exist? So you can buy it for someone you hate, of course. [Get it here].
4. A Practical Guide To Racism, £6.54
The perfect gift for the relative who uses words like "oriental," or worse. You know, the relative with a mental hierarchy of 'acceptable' races for your future life partner. The book even has a Jon Stewart quote on the front compelling you to "read it with someone you hate," which should leave them in no doubt about your feelings. Funny, deeply sarcastic, and possibly the only way to get through Christmas with certain people. [Buy it here].
5. The Fifty Shades trilogy (preferably second-hand)
Know someone who hates language? Just really, really hates the beautiful English language and wants to kill it with their misplaced apostrophes and constant eggcorns? 'Treat' them to possibly the worst successful franchise in literary history. Why? Because it's easy to play off as a thoughtful gift since it's so popular, it's old now so it's cheap, and it is genuinely miserable reading. [Get it here, or even better, from a charity shop with the sticker still on and the pages stuck together].
6. An Otamatone... for their kids. £69.98
Otamatones are ridiculous and amazing Japanese musical instruments. They're easy and fun to play. Which is why you should get one for the child of the person you hate, because the kid will send them INSANE playing random discordant music for weeks, and won't get bored like they do with actual instruments because it's just so darn cute.
Be sure to send them this Frozen cover as inspiration:
7. A really pointed 'For Dummies' book
Pick whatever they're best at (or think they're best at), and get them the 'For Dummies' version of it. Present it with a big smile on your face, innocently claiming you wanted to help with their hobby. Watch them choke on wounded pride. [Get it here].
NB: This is inspired by my first office admin job, which I left when I got an amazing writing job somewhere else. They bought me the off-brand equivalent of "writing for dummies" as a leaving present, and we all knew exactly what they were saying. But now I write, like, 50 tweets a day, so the joke's totally on them.
8. Whatever they gave you last year
Image: Michael Pereckas via Flickr CC
Ten bonus points if it's completely inappropriate for them. (I've never got over my deaf friend who received a CD player from her uncle). Double bonus points if it's got the wrapping paper still on, or you can find the original tag to cross out your name and put theirs.
9. Clothes several sizes in the wrong direction
Inspired by my ex-boyfriend's brother, who bought him suit trousers two sizes too small and planned to give them "as motivation."
Too-big sizes are no better: I had a relative who asked what size top to get me, I said 10, she got a 16 with extra stretch. I could have camped in it. Why ask if you're going to essentially say "nah, you're fatter than that!"
Extra points if you get them from a charity shop and leave the label and mysterious stains intact. Double extra points if it's some kind of underwear.
10. Just, like, loads of dinosaurs
OK, dinosaurs are cool, but this is still a bit of a crappy present. It's like the schemes for sending glitter in the post, except it's a subscription to postal dinosaurs. How many the person gets and how often is up to you, as is whether you own up to being the person bombarding them with plastic 'saurs.
Imagine getting unsigned plastic dinosaurs in the post for ten years. What does it mean? And worse, what does it mean when they suddenly stop?! [Sign them up here, from around £10 up].
What do you buy people you can't stand? Let us know in the comments. Unless it's us.
Want more gift guides and festive goodness? Head on over to our Christmas hub.