Thursday, December 27, 2007

How to drive a young teen crazy

Wrapping has become a bit of a Deal at our house. It involves a lot of decoys and deceptive packaging. For the past three years, I have employed legos in packages of things that don't rattle, specifically to mislead my curious son. This year I didn't bother, simply because it's been done too much.

For the past several years, I have employed mostly cloth gift bags, and for a few years, I had the goal of making a couple more each year. My use of cloth gift bags has unfortunately declined in recent years. Investigative and curious adolescents are more dangerous for gift-secrecy-security than toddlers ever were. I wrapped most gifts inside boxes and inside paper, because paper provides the best (though certainly not fool-proof) tamper resistance. I looked at all that paper under my tree that would soon become garbage, and resolved to find other ways to wrap any remaining presents. One, a set of special game cards, I taped to the bottom of a box that was on its way to the recycling, added a jingle-bell instrument, taped shut the box, and put it inside a cloth bag. Another, a gift of action figures that would rattle most suspiciously, I wrapped inside a sheet, which I then wrapped inside another sheet, and then another, until I had it plump enough to fill a t-shirt. The suspicious rattling was completely muffled, the wrap job was precarious enough to be entirely tamper-evident, and as it turns out, it drove the young recipient mad. As Christmas approached, he got more and more worked up about the contents of that t-shirt. Come Christmas morning, it was the first he opened, with the jingle-package being the second.

Just wait til next year, my young son..... muahahahaha

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