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Monday, October 18, 2021

What to do when the malls outside are frightful

You’ve seen the scene a million times before, but you always forget just how bad malls are during the necessary Christmas shopping period. The parking lots are full, the lines are long, kids are screaming as they wait to sit on Santa’s lap.

But the worst part of holiday shopping is just trying to figure out what to get your friends and family.

There are a number of options when trying to shop for your entertainment-loving friends. They are the breed whose heart races at the sight of a new book, CD or movie. The trick is choosing the right gift out of the often-overwhelming possibilities.

Anna Chalmers, a sophomore art major, suggests buying a friend or family member the biography of their favorite band.

“I suggest Anthony Kiedis’ autobiography Scar Tissue ($17 on Amazon). Even if someone isn’t a fan of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, it’s an awesome rock n’ roll book,” she said.

For friends who prefer hip-hop, Jay-Z has also released his first memoir, titled Decoded ($35 on Amazon), as well as a Greatest Hits CD, “The Hits Collection: Volume I” ($16 on Amazon) this month.

Box sets are also very popular during the holiday season. They’re a great way to show someone that you really know them personally, rather than settling for a generic iTunes gift card. Box sets are usually very pricey, but Amazon is a great place to find sales and good deals. The Beatles box set (the most gifted box set on the website), which contains 16 CDs, is on sale for $150. If you’re on more of a budget, there is a Michael Jackson box set (four CDs and a DVD) for $36.

Kevin Cappa, a first-year engineering major and a drama minor, also suggests the new Glee set.

“It has every single song from the first album, and it has over 100 songs. It’s about $100, but it’s worth it. I would buy it if I didn’t already have all the songs,” he said.

Another unique idea – something that entertainment lovers always appreciate – is “The Music Tee.” This is a shirt that on the front contains a screened image of a band’s CD cover, and on the back displays the album’s track list. The shirt comes with a digital code, which can be used to download the digital version of the CD on the shirt. The variety of Music Tees, which include artists such as Mos Def and the Cold War Kids, can be found online on themusictee.com and sell for $45.

If you’re on a much smaller budget, you can get never go wrong with a mix CD, according to Phillip Ting, a sophomore exercise biology major who loves music and poetry.

“If you know the recipient’s favorite music artist, but he/she has not had an album yet in a while, you could burn a compilation of the recipient’s favorite songs! It’s cheap and thoughtful,” he said.

You could also burn your friends and family a CD with artists similar to the ones you know they like (kind of like Pandora). This way, you’re introducing them to exciting new music.

Blank CDs can be found at any drug store or Target in small and large packs, for no more than $10 to 15.

For the entertainment and art lover, gift-giving seems to be a bit more of an enigma. Do you buy them a painting? A DVD?

One idea, Ting said, is to buy them something that reminds them of their favorite movie.

“I think movie posters would be a great idea for film-lovers,” he said.

Movie posters, depending on how vintage they are, can be found for a range of prices on Ebay and various other websites on Google.

For the artist friends, Chalmers suggests buying arts supplies.

“Brushes and really good gifts for artists, we could always use more. And an art set is a really great idea for little kids,” she said.

You can’t forget about those little siblings. Although kids and tweens are pretty easy to please, here are some gift ideas for the brothers and sisters you love to hate.

For the tween sister who hangs posters of the Jonas Brothers and Justin Bieber on her wall, buying her the new Justin Bieber nail polishes, with names such as “One Less Lonely Glitter,” is sure to get you on her good side.

And no teenage boy has ever said no to a new video game, which usually sells for about $30 to 60 based on the console. The new Call of Duty game Black Ops, which released about a week ago, might make a great gift. Just make sure to sneak a look at his collection while he’s away so that you don’t buy any repeats.

Roy Werner, a DJ for KDVS 90.3 FM, suggests Singamajigs for younger kids.

Singamajigs are plush, colorful, stuffed toys that sing both individually and in harmony when brought together with other Singamajigs. They are said to be one of the hottest toys this Christmas, and many believe they will sell out fast. You can still find them on Amazon for about $15 each.

Christmas is exactly 23 days away. So what are you doing still reading this? Get shopping!

ANNETA KONSTANTINIDES can be reached at arts@theaggie.org

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