Shopping for an out-of-work Eeyore? Or a glass-half-full Pollyanna? Or some other children's-entertainment metaphor about being unemployed? A lot of people are slogging through joblessness this holiday season, and I'll bet they could use a little cheer right about now. Even if your friend isn't in dire, borderline-homeless straits quite yet, day after day of just doing nothing can really do a number on one's mental health. So here are some ideas to keep your pals comfy, sane, and entertained during those long recession afternoons.
Disposable Flasks To stave off despair and depression, it's vitally important for the unemployed to leave the house. Go out. Do stuff! With other humans! But, come on, it's not like you have a ton of disposable cash lying around to shell out for $10 covers and $9 mojitos. But with these disposable flasks, you can sneak the cheap stuff from home into any bar or party (or, let's be honest with ourselves, public park). And if an eagle-eyed bouncer catches you swigging in the corner, they'll just confiscate this cheap plastic thingy instead of your grandpappy's heirloom pewter flask. $15 for three, Restoration Hardware.
Monogrammed Pajancho + Pajama Jeans Combo Yeah, unemployment sucks, but it's also an awesome excuse to be fucking comfortable as shit for months at a time! Now, conventional wisdom says that when you're not working, it's important to get out of bed, take off your pajamas, and put pants on your body every day. (Ugh, squares.) But loophole!!! What if all of your clothes are just made of pajamas!? Obviously we're all aware of Pajama Jeans, but are you familiar with the Pajancho? Pajamagram.com will sell you a 100% pajama-based outfit—one pair of Pajama Jeans and one Pajancho—that would be totally acceptable to wear on all your big errands for the day (i.e. mainly going to the taco truck). Plus, they'll monogram it for you so everyone will know that these are YOUR PAJAMA CLOTHES, SO HANDS OFF. Our suggestion: "2Kute2Kare." $89.99 for both, Pajamagram.
Literally Anything from SkyMall It's easy to get depressed when you're out of work, and when you're depressed it's easy to let self-care fall by the wayside. When you're busy, you never feel like you have enough time to moisturize and massage and groom yourself, but when you're not busy you're too bummed out to do it. But if your unemployed friends don't want to treat themselves, you can do it for them. Luckily, the good (batshit bonkers) folks at SkyMall have a weird grooming produce for every single part of the human body. Like the ultrasonic hand moisturizer. Or this weird thing you strap on your head to "train" your "face" to be less ugly. Or the world's least appealing leg massager thing. There are infinite gadgets to knead and moisturize and pamper your body, and BONUS—everything from SkyMall is made from 100% pure comedy gold. Prices vary, SkyMall.
Port-A-Pug Everyone yearns for companionship and cuteness, but flesh-and-blood animal friends can be really expensive for those on limited budgets. So how about an adorable pet that requires zero care or attention whatsoever? Port-a-Pug will hang out in your house and listen to all your problems, but never ever poop in your shoe or lick you on the mouth or demand expensive gravy morsels or eat an entire ham and have to get its stomach pumped. Win-win! $33.95, Neatoshop.
Business Casual Kicks from Aerosoles Your friend is going to need some good footwear when they're out pounding the pavement looking for that dream job—something comfortable, durable, but cute enough that they won't get laughed out of the boutique by the mean shop-girls, Pretty Woman-style. BIG MISTAKE. My favorite place for affordable, stylish-enough shoes that won't pulverize my foot-balls is Aerosoles, which might seem frumpy at first glance but offers some surprising gems. Prices vary, Aerosoles.
A Good Bra Good bras are expensive, but they're so important. Having to wear an old, ratty, uncomfortable bra can be really demoralizing, but when you're stressed to the gills about buying food, it's tough to justify spending $50 to $100 on a piece of underwear. Drag your friend out of the house and take them to Nordstrom (or the lingerie shop of your choice) for a good old-fashioned bra fitting. It'll do wonders for their well being (and good posture can't hurt in a job interview). Prices vary, Nordstrom.
Every Harry Potter Movie Ever Probably the best part of having no set schedule is that you can make yourself horizontal stare at screens all day to your heart's content. And there's no better way to fill those hours than with sticky, concentrated, top-shelf MAGICAL ESCAPISM. Accio Cheddar Cheese Bugles, amirite!? $71.04, Amazon. Or, if you're literally a sultan and/or the best friend ever, you can get them the Wizard's Collection Box Set for $344.99 at Amazon.
A Pot Cook Book I mean...why not? Seriously, what else are you doing? Go nuts. $29.95, The Stoner's Store.
A Tank of Gas Sometimes the most basic things can have the biggest impact. Just helping someone get to the store/the bank/a job interview/their mom's house/the head-clearing open road might really significantly change their day. Most major gas stations offer gift cards. Shell or wherever.