Black Friday: stuff guys shouldn’t buy as Christmas gifts

Take a moment to read this and avoid a holiday disaster…

Today is Black Friday and guys, you’re about to make some bad decisions.

Crowd psychology is weird and powerful and makes individuals do things they wouldn’t normally do; just ask any lemming or someone who trampled a pregnant housewife to get a Cabbage Patch Doll back in 1983.

So before you head to the mall to start our month-long celebration of the Prince of Peace by getting in fistfights over parking spots and half-price sweaters so ugly nobody but Stevie Wonder would wear them, you need to read this.

My list of stuff guys shouldn’t buy as Christmas gifts.

Starting with…

Exercise equipment

If you watch sports on TV – and if you don’t, you’re dead to me – you are currently being bombarded with ads showing wives receiving the gift of exercise equipment with glee.

These ads are bullshit.

Nothing says, “I think you have a fat ass” like an exercise bike and that’s how real-life wives will view any gift that suggests they need to get in better shape.

And as you might have noticed, the women in those ads all seem to have zero-percent body fat already because an ad showing an exercise bike being given to a woman’s whose backside could be used as drive-in movie screen would just seem cruel.

So avoid Peloton bikes, Nordic Tracks, all the Bowflex stuff and whatever the hell that weird mirror thing is. Having a mirror with a disembodied exercise instructor in the reflection will lead to no good; just ask Snow White.

That mirror dude just might tell your wife to dump any husband insensitive enough to buy her exercise equipment.

Plus, buying exercise equipment for somebody commits them to working like a galley slave for the foreseeable future and every time your wife walks by that piece of unused crap it will make her feel like a failure and she’ll take it out on you in some bizarre passive-aggressive way that you won’t understand and she won’t explain.

Little known fact: the gift of exercise equipment is a factor in 27 percent of all divorces which is something I just made up, but feels true.

Also, the fact that your six-pack abs have turned into a 12-pack won’t work in your favor. You’re walking around holding a beer in one hand and a Philly Cheesesteak in the other and you’re telling her to get in shape?

A donation to your cause

Nothing is more disappointing than opening a gift card and finding out someone gave money in your name to a cause you don’t care about.

Wait – gotta amend that last statement – when I was still a teenager my mother gave me a Bible with my name on it for my birthday which is of course what every teenage boy in America secretly wants to receive.

I still have that Bible and you might think it turned out to be a great gift after all, but I still have it because putting it in recycling or selling it to a used book store is not an option…it’s got my name on it and I don’t need some used-bookstore browser picking it up and saying, “Hey, everybody, looks like Lee Judge is going to Hell.”

Jewelry that comes in a small box

Fewer people are getting married these days (more on that in a moment) and jewelry stores have figured out they’re not going to keep the lights on selling engagement rings so they’ve come up with bullshit items like “promise rings” and “love bracelets.”

If you’re not married yet and give that special someone a gift that comes in a small box from a jewelry store she’s going to think it’s an engagement ring and you’re about to go down on one knee and pop the question.

When she realizes it’s actually some “Infinity Knot Friendship Ring” it will take all her willpower to refrain from winding up and bouncing that jewelry box off your forehead.

According to a Cornell University study, for most women marriage is still a financial transaction and your bad judgment in jewelry is likely to knock you off the list of suitable providers.

Women, if you disagree with that study go right ahead; Cornell University’s football team is currently 4-4, so you might not want to believe what comes out of what is clearly an average university.

The wrong-size dress and they’re all the wrong size

Let’s say your wife is a size 6 and you buy her a size 12 dress. She will be pissed because you clearly think she should be pulling a Budweiser beer wagon in her spare time. Now let’s say she’s actually a size 12 and you buy her a size 6 dress.

She will still be pissed.

This time because you reminded her that she’d fit right in with a team of Clydesdales.

BTW: If size 12 was a bad example I plead ignorance because no man on earth who isn’t currently a cast member of Queer Eye understands how women’s dress sizes are calculated. We go by inches (insert off-color joke here) or S, M, L, XL or XXL although apparently we don’t understand those measurements either because a lot of us think we’re an XXL when we’re actually an XS, which should take care of the off-color joke requirement if you didn’t have time to come up with one of your own.

A new car

OK, this might seem like a great gift although I have to wonder who these people are who buy each other cars. I must live in the wrong neighborhood because I have never in my life walked down the street on Christmas morning and seen a brand new Mercedes Benz with as big-ass bow on the roof.

But enough about me and my financial situation.

Even if you can afford a lavish gift like a new car I predict it will eventually become a problem because every time you want to get lucky (so to speak) and she’s not in the mood you’re going to think, “Hey, I bought her a damn car” and she’s going to think, “Just because he bought me a new car, doesn’t mean I have to put out anytime he feels like it” and pretty soon you’re into issues you’d rather not deal with and wind up in couples therapy all because you went overboard at Christmas.

You can get in just as much trouble for buying her lingerie, but a Victoria’s Secret Crisscross Embroidered Thong Panty goes for $49.50 and a Mercedes Benz C-Class Sedan C 300 retails at $43, 925 and since either gift could send you to divorce court, go for the butt-huggers and save $43, 875.50 which you’re going to need to decorate that studio apartment you’ll soon be living in.

So what should you give your wife?

I’m going to go against popular opinion here and say cash is a great gift and you need to hear me out.

Every gift is a guess and most of the time guys guess wrong. We give women stuff they don’t want because we tend to give them the stuff we want them to have, like sex toys and Super Bowl tickets.

Women see cash as a bad gift because they think we haven’t put any thought into it and I’m here to tell women you don’t want us putting any thought into your gifts because what we think is pretty screwed up and you’re going to wind up with a pair of crotchless underwear and a rowing machine which we’re kinda hoping you’ll use at the same time while we watch with one of those leering grins that indicates the blood has left our brains for other body locales and our IQ is at least 26 points lower than it was before you started rowing.

Wouldn’t you rather have an envelope stuffed with money instead?

Guys, show this column to your significant other and if she agrees you can forget all this Black Friday nonsense and engage in one-stop shopping.

Your bank’s drive-through lane.