I got a jump on Christmas this year, and sunk the whole budget in FTX, with the thought of bestowing the cryptocurrency of the future on friends and family.   It was a rare mis-step.  My instincts for Christmas presents are usually spot on.  There’s plenty of time to start over, though for ‘tis the holiday spending season, the jolliest quarter of the year, when corporate boardroom floors across the land are merrily trimmed with new-fallen drifts of well-chewed fingernails.

According to a recent study commissioned by Cornstarch, Inc., the non-military part of our economy is  consumer spending, most of which occurs between Thanksgiving and New Years.  It’s no stretch to suggest that it’s our patriotic duty, especially this year, to buy stuff that was made in other countries from each other on our official product-themed national holidays: Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Small Business Saturday.  We need more, though, and there are plenty of unclaimed days.  As usual, Ithaca can lead the way…

Distilled Beverage Friday (December 2):  Myer Farm Distillery just up the road on Route 89.  What better way to ring in the season than a field trip?  Probably just a coincidence that a 375mL bottle fits perfectly in a stocking.

Microbrewery Monday (December 5): Two days ought to be enough to recover from Distilled Beverage Friday.  I’ll be bouncing between Revelry Yards and Lucky Hare, being downtown and all, doing my economic duty.  Not sure if this will add to the gift pile, but it sure sounds like fun.

White Wine Wednesday (December 7): After a well-deserved rest day, it’s time to hit the trail.  To Northside.  I say why drive all over the Finger Lakes, when the legwork’s already been done?  They have shopping carts, gift bags, and Christmas music.

Lest anyone think that rushing headlong into alcoholism is our only path to salvation, there’s Adopt-a-Pet Thursday (December 8). The Tompkins County SPCA is a no-kill shelter and there are plenty of wonderful holiday gifts to be had.  A kitten, for example, makes an excellent stocking-stuffer, and I guarantee you every child on your list would love a surprise puppy.  Way better than dumb old cryptocurrency, and I think this is the way I’m going this year.  

Storm Prep Saturday (December 10):  Santa’s workshop is floating on a giant raft anchored to the floor of the Arctic Ocean, but only a true Grinch would fail to see the myriad new gift opportunities provided by wild and unpredictable weather patterns.  Generators, batteries, flashlights, drums of fresh water, cartons of hardtack and pemmican…soon enough all that stuff will be as synonymous with the holidays as wreaths and candy canes.

Tech-stock Sunday (December 11):  Could be there are bargains to be had, what with those kooky billionaires slashing jobs and whatnot.  Of course, Meta and Twitter could also disintegrate like the Christmas Story lamp.  It’s potentially the most exciting gift of the season.

Cryptomining Moratorium Monday (December 12):  A Christmas present to all of us.  Seneca Lake Guardian and Assembly Member Anna Kelles are definitely on the Nice List.  

Yoga Tuesday (December 13):  Gift cards!  The half of the Ithaca’s population that are licensed instructors can charge the other half for an hour of poses and breathing.  Everyone wins, and it’s an economic bonanza.  I’ve gotten really good at shavasana, the dead body pose.

Hemp Day-Hump Day (December 14):  Any product that is created naturally and which is biodegradable, like a hemp-based product, screams “buy me for a holiday gift.”  Kids, especially, just love knobby, scratchy, grayish, pre-wrinkled garments.

That will get us to the next column, if we haven’t maxed out our cards by then.  Keep spending, and happy holidays!

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