My Christmas shopping for others is pretty small. For my nuclear family, we swap small thoughtful or funny gifts. For those who share Christmas lunch, there are a few small thoughtful gifts.
With almost everyone else, I say "Thanks for the virtual $50. here is your virtual $50 in return. Thanks!" and then go on to buy something for my self, and say "Thanks for the X you got me for Christmas."
This comes from when my brothers and I were all "Big Day Out" fans, and we would all go to that summer rock festival. What we would all do is buy our own tickets, and say "Thanks, Brothers of mine. What a perfect and thoughtful gift."
Now, many of you might be wondering - what has Bart bought with all of your virtual Christmas fifty dollars?
I'm glad you asked.
Netbook - Many times during the year, I've been wanting to take my data with me. Not games, not media - just spreadsheets, word processing documents, emails and pdf's. I process data at work or at home. I like grunty desktop PC's. Notebooks never did it for me. Too many compromises. My phone, while a vaguely usable data point, is not use for sharing data with others. So in comes the netbook. It's a HP Mini 110, running Linux. It's fast to boot, light and V. portable. Claimed 3 hours battery life, and will hopefully be able to plug in my HTC diamond to act as my 3G modem. $400.
Vehicle - I got rid of the van. Two regos was silly, and the unreliability of an older vehicle is something I could very much do without. I also thought about the amount of times I had four passengers. Almost none. And I hated it anyway, because most of my friends are tall. So it sucked. Why did I get the van? CUBES. I am in hobbies where moving a lot of stuff is a necessity. Medieval Stuff. Gaming Stuff. Tents. bed, tables.
I was driving and loving my Yaris. It cost almost nothing to run, could move a few people, and could move a lot of stuff. But I needed cubes.
So as of early January, I will own a Hilux Ute. It's the basic 4x2 workmate ute with alloy tray, tray cover and 2250 kg powered brake towball. White. 4 cyclinder 2.7 litre petrol, manual. 2.7 litres is my biggest engine ever. My previously reasonable environmental cred is slipping... Still, I've never owned a v6 or more.
So thanks everyone for my netbook and my new ute. Merry Christmas!