IT'S A WEEK until Christmas and you're scrambling to find a gift for that special friend/loved one/relative/parole officer. Now that it's below 80 degrees, I'm in the holiday spirit, so I'm offering this gift guide for the last-minute shopper. For your consideration:
• The Jameis Winston Action Figure: Flip the switch and it will break out the windows in your apartment complex while standing on a table screaming vulgar rap lyrics. Then, it steals crab legs and does unspeakable things to them, all the while claiming that it was consensual.
(Crab legs not included ... just like at the store.)
• Arizona Moronopoly: This is an exciting new board game for those on the Delusional Right. After taking a big swig of the Krackpot Kool-Aid, you begin the game a billion dollars in the hole. As you roll the dice and circumnavigate the board, you try to give away as much money as you can to your rich friends and campaign contributors while maintaining a façade of a balanced budget. If you land on the corner square, you have to do whatever the Goldwater Institute tells you to do. (Actually, the way it really works is that if you land on any square, you have to do whatever the Goldwater Institute tells you to do.)
It's the ultimate shell game. You can take money that is supposed to go to the schools and instead give it to lawyers so they can go to court and fake argue why it shouldn't go to schools. It's fun for the entire family ... if your family is inbred and/or lives in Colorado City.
•Dog Collar With Spikes: No, The Ramones aren't making a comeback, because, you know, they're all dead. However, if someone you care about lives in a community where law enforcement personnel still employ the banned chokehold, this gift is perfect. Whether you're selling individual cigarettes on the street or simply Walking While Black, this collar could be a life-saver. And even if they do manage to choke the life out of you, there's a chance that you won't be going alone.
• Old School Tucson City Council Dolls: They're like the dolls that your grandma used to have. They don't move, they don't talk; they really don't do much of anything. They're like the 21st-century version of the Pet Rock.
• A Bing Translator For Offended UA Football Fans: I told you a while ago about one of my former players, Soomin, who lives in Inchon, South Korea. She's on Facebook, but she writes in Korean. Facebook has a Bing translator that makes stuff come out absolutely hilarious. One of her more recent posts came out translated as "Although the Park manifesting as chicken feet... Nail head." That's actually one of the more lucid ones.
Amazingly, the Letters to the Editor page of the daily paper has recently featured letters from people who are viscerally upset with some of the sideline actions of Pac-12 Coach of the Year Rich Rodriguez. Apparently, some people are mightily offended that a paid employee of the UA might be speaking to young people in a manner that is harsh and/or inappropriate.
Those of us who have actually played football know that everything that coaches say is upbeat and helpful. It just looks bad from a distance, especially to people who play Earth Ball while wearing sandals made of hemp.
Those people should get a Bing Translator flash drive for their TVs and when an apparently perturbed Rodriguez approaches a player, the fan will hear the coach, in a soothing voice, saying, "Darn nice try there, Skipper. It would have been nice if we had made that first down, but it's not the end of the world. We're just here to have fun. I don't even know why they keep score for these things."
GAG GIFT: Tucson Pothole Locator. Yeah, like we need help in finding those.
• "The Wit and Wisdom of Arizona Governor Jan Brewer". Good for the environment because it's only one page. (The Wit side of the paper is the one that actually has something written on it.) Brewer once told a joke about the time she graduated from GED school. No wait, the joke is that she "graduated" from GED school.
• Bill Cosby's new book, "Forget All That Stuff I Said About Character". We're trying. We really are.
• The new weight-loss book by UA basketball Coach Sean Miller, "Coachercise". Put on an expensive suit, then crouch like a baseball catcher for two hours on the McKale Center Court as you sweat like a banker at confession. You get an extra workout by exercising muscle control as you refrain from picking that atomic wedgie on national TV.
STOCKING STUFFERS (Little or no cost):
• The Republican Alternative to Obamacare. Five years in the making, it costs nothing, it does nothing because it is nothing. It's basically the Emperor's New Clothes of Political Talking Points.
• Free "The Modern Streetcar Is a Failure!" placards. Local radio talk-show hosts had thousands of these things printed up in anticipation of the huge public backlash against the public transportation system. Unfortunately for them, the thing is a raging success so they have to get rid of the placards to make room for the new shipment of "Elect a Real Woman: Palin in 2016" posters.
• Stocking stuffers? Weren't those the guys from Spinal Tap?