2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Things that don't belong anywhere else. (Check first).

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Zorlin
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Zorlin » Mon Nov 09, 2009 6:01 pm UTC

User Name: Zorlin
Are you okay with getting packages explicitly stating "from the internet!"/crazily decorated: Yeah. If it's a small package I'll generally be picking it up myself, if it's not, well, my folks'll think it's weird but cool anyways. So yes. Definitely!
Hobbies: Erm, coding, music, occasionally reading (shock!) and general geeky stuff.
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Any food/jewelry/otter/duck allergies: Elastoplast bandages are right out. Besides that - most things are fair game.
Any other Pertinent Questions: Do things have to be shipped by me, or is shipping from Amazon okay?
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby JoeyJo0 » Mon Nov 09, 2009 7:41 pm UTC

User Name: JoeyJo0
Are you okay with getting packages explicitly stating "from the internet!"/crazily decorated: Uh, yeah, actually, I prefer.
Hobbies: Computers, Collecting minerals/crystals/rocks, chemistry, science, programming
Favourite Colour: Black
Favorite xkcd: http://xkcd.com/162/
Any food/jewelry/otter/duck allergies: Only homework, altough I do hate cheese much.
Any other Pertinent Questions: Nope, but I prefer something that has been done with effort instead of something just bought in a store, wrapped up and sent away.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Spacemilk » Tue Nov 10, 2009 4:05 am UTC

Post updated to include recent names, as well as a new rule (wish I'd implemented it sooner but I was out for a few days and unable to update!): We are only going to include people who have been a part of the fora for at least 3 months. For now this rule will only be applied from this point forward, but we will apply it as we see fit. If you joined less than 3 months ago, some meaningful participation as shown by your posts will go a long way towards being allowed to participate in the exchange, hint hint.

I appreciate the gift ideas, and I especially appreciate the Super Secret Santas who have signed up so far!!!
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Decker » Tue Nov 10, 2009 1:55 pm UTC

Hrm. I just realized that I don't know very much about most of the people here.

I'd like to withdraw my name.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Teapot » Tue Nov 10, 2009 3:35 pm UTC

User Name: Teapot
Are you okay with getting packages explicitly stating "from the internet!"/crazily decorated: Yes, definitely :)
Hobbies: Music (playing or listening) is a big enough hobby that I'm now using it as my university course. Also dressing up/dressing strangely just to get funny looks.
Favourite Colour: Anything bright but mostly orange/purple/pink at the moment.
Favorite xkcd: 385
Any food/jewelry/otter/duck allergies: Mango. Some food with cola flavourings (I haven't figured out exactly what flavouring causes this but I like to play it safe with cola sweets). Coconut bath/shower stuff. Not an allergy but I can't use most soaps because they dry my skin out. I think that's all.
Any other Pertinent Questions: I'll send my address to Jess but there may be an issue with where I'm spending Christmas and I may have to update the address accordingly. I should find out for sure by the end of this week though.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby gallifrey » Tue Nov 10, 2009 8:10 pm UTC

User Name: gallifrey
Are you okay with getting packages explicitly stating "from the internet!"/crazily decorated: of course!
Hobbies: reading (scifi/fantasy/horror), music (i play the saxophone), drawing
Favourite Colour: lime green, purple, black
Favorite xkcd: i can't really pick just one....
Any food/jewelry/otter/duck allergies: nope! i'm allergic to a lot but not to anything that would be sent in the mail
Any other Pertinent Questions: preferably not perishable food, i'm not sure when i will be around to get the package...
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Spacemilk » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:06 pm UTC

Decker wrote:Hrm. I just realized that I don't know very much about most of the people here.

I'd like to withdraw my name.

I took your name off the list, and I totally don't blame you, but keep in mind this might be a good opportunity to get to know someone better. There are a good number of people in this thread who post in different areas of the forums than I do, and this is a great opportunity to get to know them. I'm hoping that once the Secret Santa assignments are made, we can turn this thread into a fun general question-and-answer session, in which people can ask questions to the Santas at large to find out more about them.

I'll start this question thing out now: What was your favorite present as a child, and why?

My answer: For me, it was when my babysitter gave me her hand-me-down "My Little Pony" castle. I was 7 years old, she was 13 or 14 and had outgrown it. She put it in an old Coleman cooler box, so when my 7-year-old self opened it I guess I got the most incredible look of disappointment on my face (she had been hinting for weeks that I'd love the present) and I tried to be polite and thankful but I guess my facial expressions were hilariously the opposite. So my babysitter managed, through her laughter, to tell me to open it - and I absolutely flipped when I saw what it was. My little sister and I spent a TON of time as kids playing with that castle - it was awesome.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Decker » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:16 pm UTC

I will definitly jump in on the question thing.

My favorite gift as a kid was the official Erector Set that my parents got me. It was one of those really big sets with tons of little parts. I spent a really long time making little heleocopters and jeeps and such.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby blue_eyedspacemonkey » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:23 pm UTC

Erm, toss up between duplo/lego that I got for various christmases, and my first cross-stitch kit. My baby-sitter brought hers to do while I was playing/asleep, and I asked her what she was doing etc. She explained and let me have a go, and then I pestered my mom like crazy. I've been cross-stitching on and off ever since :)
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Teapot » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:28 pm UTC

My favourite gift as a child was the bike my parents bought me when I was about 4 or 5. A couple of months before Christmas I'd been watching TV (Probably sesame street) and there was a clip of some kids tying streamers to their bikes and cycling through town. I thought that that was probably the best (and most grown up) thing ever so for Christmas my mum and dad bought me my first proper bike and spent all night tying streamers to the handle bars and making sure they curled. It was a pretty big surprise to go into the living room and see a bike standing there. For years I could only ride it up and down the garden path (we lived in a pretty busy area) but when we moved it also became the first bike I rode without stabilisers.

If you asked mum and dad what my favourite gift was though, they'd tell you it was the umbrella I got for Christmas when I was 2. Mum put it in the stocking and I was so amazed on Christmas day that I had an umbrella that it took my parents hours to get me to show any interest at all in what else there was in the stocking or in the living room to unwrap. Apparently I ruined that for my sister by getting into the "We have to open all our presents now!" phase at the same time she was in the "Wow! I got a present!" phase.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Sungura » Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:41 pm UTC

My favorite gift as a child....um....I don't remember to be honest. Probably the stickers I got when I was about four years old. Those were awesome stickers. And my mom loves to tell the story about how (these stickers were Mickey Mouse, and my wallpaper at the time was Micky Mouse) she came in one day after my nap time and found little bits of wallpaper strewn around. Mad, she asked me what I was doing, I just turned a looked at her and said, "It's stickers, Mommie!" and apparently I also thought they were like stamps, if I licked the back it would stick back up! Uh, that didn't really work though. She was pretty mad, and my father just thought it was hillarious. Or maybe it was the other way around, she thought it was funny and he was mad. I forget. But yeah. I guess those were the best present ever. Stickers. I still like stickers, actually.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby reishka » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:33 pm UTC

User Name: reishka
Are you okay with getting packages explicitly stating "from the internet!"/crazily decorated: Of course! Feel free to decorate as much as you like!
Hobbies: Reading, Cooking, Blogging about cooking, Baking bread, making homemade soap, Sleeping.
Favourite Colour: Blue. #7FD4EF or #002670 are my favourites.
Favorite xkcd: http://xkcd.com/222/
Any food/jewelry/otter/duck allergies: Nothing with a powerful scent (like most perfumes). Strong scents give me headaches.

What was your favorite present as a child, and why? I don't really remember a favourite present from when I was a child, but my favourite one from recent memory is a hand-me-down Slovak cookbook from my mother, that was from her mother. That, and my brother in law and his wife gave me a set of bamboo-motif dinner plates last year. Those are awesome!

I am all-for handmade awesome things, foods, or postcard books. Those are cool too.
Last edited by reishka on Wed Nov 11, 2009 11:50 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Jessica » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:09 pm UTC

User Name: Jessica
Are you okay with getting packages explicitly stating "from the internet!"/crazily decorated: sure am!
Hobbies: I roleplay, I videogame, dance, I love music, and enjoy spending time talking about trans rights. Reading sci fi and a bit of fantasy... uh... specific questions please :(
Favourite Colour: Orange, then purple, then other colours
Favorite xkcd: uh... map of the internet I think.
Any food/jewelry/otter/duck allergies: Nope!
Any other Pertinent Questions: I live in Canada, and would love to get stuff from random people!! :D

What was your favorite present as a child, and why? Lego, because it gave me something to do all afternoon/evening, and then I had something to play with with my friends. And when I was done with that kit it added to the communal awesome pile of lego where we'd make stuff.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Spacemilk » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:36 pm UTC

Zorlin wrote:Any other Pertinent Questions: Do things have to be shipped by me, or is shipping from Amazon okay?

Oops, sorry I missed this earlier! Yes, I don't see a problem with it at all... just keep in mind your person's likes and dislikes. Some people have stated that they'd like homemade stuff, although there are some *very* cool handmade items on the Amazon marketplace for the artistically-challenged among us. (such as me!)

Also I'm going to add something to the OP: I'd like all the Santas to take a picture before they send their present (as photo proof they weren't Deadbeat Santas), but I'd also like this thread to be a house for showing the unboxing photos!!! Please plan to take AT LEAST one picture of unboxing (or post-unboxing) your lovely gift, and we can share with the community!

Another OP change: Added a link to automatically make a PM for __jess as a few people were having trouble with the username spelling.

Big thanks to all the Super Secret Santas! Also the question answers are great, I will post a new one soon! :D

Please let me know if you have any more mailing tips or tricks, or any cheap/fun gift ideas!
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Jessica » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:46 pm UTC

Spacemilk wrote:I'd like all the Santas to take a picture before they send their present (as photo proof they weren't Deadbeat Santas), but I'd also like this thread to be a house for showing the unboxing photos!!! Please plan to take AT LEAST one picture of unboxing (or post-unboxing) your lovely gift, and we can share with the community!

If we ship from somewhere specific (like say a blog or etsy) how can we take a photo of it first?
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Rinsaikeru » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:47 pm UTC

Maybe just keep a copy of the order confirmation?
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Spacemilk » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:54 pm UTC

Rinsaikeru wrote:Maybe just keep a copy of the order confirmation?

Yes, this would work. I just really don't want anyone to get accused of being a deadbeat, when it reality it may have been a mail system error. Essentially just be able to show proof of purchase or shipping.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby gallifrey » Wed Nov 11, 2009 11:50 pm UTC

My favorite gift as a child was probably Knex. I loved building stuff with them, they were so much better than Legos! I'm pretty sure I still have them sitting around at home somewhere....
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Azrael001 » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:05 am UTC

My favorite gifts were always lego, or an action figure of what ever super hero was popular at the time. I don't have any specific memories though sorry.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby semicharmed » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:48 am UTC

Favorite present as a child, and why?
Probably the first bucket of legos, probably from the Christmas when I was 4 or 5. Or the Lego pirate ship I got shortly after. Because Legos are awesome, and my sister, my dad & I spent hours upon hour upon hours of just building things.
Or else the Weapons & Warriors Pirate battle set me & my sister got for Christmas when I was 8 or so; again, because it led to hours of fun shooting marbles across the kitchen floor, poorly aimed at the other side's men/ships.

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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby kernelpanic » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:49 am UTC

Spacemilk wrote:take a picture before they send their present

A picture of what? What do we do with it?
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby rath358 » Thu Nov 12, 2009 1:54 am UTC

kernelpanic wrote:
Spacemilk wrote:take a picture before they send their present

A picture of what? What do we do with it?
you take a picture of the present you are about to send, so in case the mail people lose it, you can show us that you aren't an inconsiderate jerk who didn't send a present.

idea: although it may be a more work for the organizers, each person sending in an ETA for their present, which is passed onto the receiver might help. if not, disregard this.

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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby scrovak » Thu Nov 12, 2009 2:48 am UTC

Just thought everyone would be interested in this nifty little tool at UPS for determining shipping and customs regulations, as far as what you can and cannot send, depending on what country you're mailing from and to.

Wow that was a big sentence...

Anyway, my favorite present as a child was... You know, I never really had one. How sad is that? lol NO! An NES. With like 20 games, all from FunCo Land. Legend of Zelda A Link to the past was by far my favorite.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby PhoenixEnigma » Thu Nov 12, 2009 4:38 am UTC

Hmmm . . favorite present as a child? My best OMG-this-is-AWESOME! moment would be a metal detector, but it turned out to be less fun in the real world then I imagined. Not many people actually bury treasure, it seems. The gift I love the most and was (is) my all time favorite was one of those 300-in-1 circuit things that had a bunch of components mounted to a board with spring connectors. Building an AM radio station at age 10 = awesome!
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Skythe » Thu Nov 12, 2009 4:58 am UTC

I think this is awesome. Sure I'll participate.

User Name: Skythe

Are you okay with getting packages explicitly stating "from the internet!"/crazily decorated: I wish I got more often. (as long as there's no homemade explosives or anthrax in them)

Hobbies: Reading,watching movies, zombies, biking, x files, listening to music, basketball, sci fi stuff, writing, hunting. (I know most of the stuff isn't hobbies >.>)

Favourite Colour: Green

Favorite xkcd: Any of the math jokes.

Any food/jewelry/otter/duck allergies: No/no/maybe/no

Any other Pertinent Questions: no
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Outchanter » Thu Nov 12, 2009 5:36 am UTC

User Name: Outchanter.
Are you okay with getting packages explicitly stating "from the internet!"/crazily decorated: I'd be disappointed if they weren't.
Hobbies: reading fantasy/sci fi/sci nonfi, writing fantasy/sci fi, wasting time on these fora/tvtropes/wikipedia/other webcomics, playing cello/violin/flute, programming/project Euler, walking/exploring.
Favourite Colour: Octarine, as in my signature. But blue and green are also good.
Favorite xkcd: 505
Any food/jewelry/otter/duck allergies: nobody sends meat by mail, right?
Any other Pertinent Questions: my favourite present as a child was probably a tape recorder. Do those things even exist anymore?

I'll also sign on for double duty in event of deadbeats. When are the gifts supposed to arrive?

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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Meowgan » Thu Nov 12, 2009 10:17 am UTC

When I was a mini-human, the best present I got was a walkman. I taped a lot of songs from the radio and I had a tape that just played 4 Hanson songs over and over.

Can I request that everyone sends a short (or long) hand-written note with their gifty? Either send it as part of the parcel, or send it so it'll arrive at around the same time. Because I like these more than the actual stuff.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Zohar » Thu Nov 12, 2009 10:18 am UTC

I agree with the handwritten thing.

BTW, if it's international post, doesn't it get stamps saying which countries it past through?
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby scrovak » Thu Nov 12, 2009 10:32 am UTC

Zohar wrote:I agree with the handwritten thing.

BTW, if it's international post, doesn't it get stamps saying which countries it past through?

I see where you're going with this, and I like it...
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Two9A » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:09 am UTC

PhoenixEnigma wrote:The gift I love the most and was (is) my all time favorite was one of those 300-in-1 circuit things that had a bunch of components mounted to a board with spring connectors. Building an AM radio station at age 10 = awesome!
So very much this. I got one of these when I was 9 or 10, and spent all day putting the radio together. The capacitor was set to 1200kHz or thereabouts, so it picked up 1215 as soon as I put the battery in. I still get misty-eyed when Bluebells comes on the radio :mrgreen:

Either the AM radio kit, or the Commodore 64 my brother got when I was 3. Put the both together, and it's no surprise that I'm a huge geek now.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Sungura » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:05 pm UTC

scrovak wrote:
Zohar wrote:I agree with the handwritten thing.

BTW, if it's international post, doesn't it get stamps saying which countries it past through?

I see where you're going with this, and I like it...
No, it's not like a passport that gets stamped all the time. Just goes direct.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Two9A » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:15 pm UTC

Sungura wrote:
scrovak wrote:
Zohar wrote:if it's international post, doesn't it get stamps saying which countries it past through?

I see where you're going with this, and I like it...
No, it's not like a passport that gets stamped all the time. Just goes direct.
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To be specific (and perhaps pedantic), it'll get stamped with each sorting office it goes through. If you ship to a remote island nation, where the nearest airport is the Phillippines (I dunno), it'll get stamped at air-side sorting in .PH, and then sent on by ship to the receiving country, which'll stamp it again.

I can't see a situation where you'd get more than two sorting stamps, though.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Zohar » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:33 pm UTC

I don't know where you're going with this scrovak (possibly sending a package around the world?). What I meant was people would know which country their package came from.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Meowgan » Thu Nov 12, 2009 12:37 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:I don't know where you're going with this scrovak (possibly sending a package around the world?). What I meant was people would know which country their package came from.
I thought the point of it was you found out who your Santa was when you received your parcel.

Another cheap idea: Maybe include a CD with some of your favourite songs on it and some songs they may not have heard before.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Sungura » Thu Nov 12, 2009 1:34 pm UTC

Uh...yeah, I thought the santa gets reviled when you open the package.

I guess that makes sense, 29a, I have only sent international to Norway, England, Uganda, Australia, and New Zealand. And so from me it's taken by truck to Detroit where it is flown to Chicago and then gets sent out to said country, then truck/walk transported to wherever it goes. I've only received international from Scotland, England, and New Zealand. So my sample size is limited.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby LL Cool J » Thu Nov 12, 2009 1:42 pm UTC

Heh, 'reviled'. That's one of those typos that makes the sentence way better.

With the anonymity thing - I wouldn't recommend not putting a return address on your package, just in case it doesn't get through for whatever reason. You wouldn't have to put a name, though, so your secret santa would only know the location and country. I think it's sort of nice to find out who the gift is from, but if you wanted to keep it completely anonymous that seems cool too.

Also, signups close in four days (give or take). Make sure you send me your postal address!
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby Zohar » Thu Nov 12, 2009 1:47 pm UTC

I don't mind telling people, I just thought some of the point was to reveal them in the thread after a person posts their received package.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby do{<3}while(1); » Thu Nov 12, 2009 3:36 pm UTC

I'm not sure what my favorite Christmas present was.. Maybe my bicycle? The most recent present I spent all of Christmas day with was Pinky and the Brain dvds (Season 1)... I miss that show.

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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby PatrickRsGhost » Thu Nov 12, 2009 5:29 pm UTC

I would have to say I actually have 3 favorite Christmas gifts.

First one was a Calvin and Hobbes book my grandma gave me one year. I had asked for the entire collection, but she bought me only The Indispensable Calvin and Hobbes. Was still awesome. Another year my parents bought me 5 CDs, including two Peter Gabriel albums, a "Weird Al" album, Steve Miller Band, and the Ren & Stimpy album. We had a Tandy computer at the time with a CD-ROM that we hooked a tape deck to, so that we could record CDs to cassette tapes. That same year, or it may have been a year prior, my parents gave me a dual-deck boom box, and a few gift certificates to Turtle's Music.
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Re: 2009 XKCD Fora Secret Santa Gift Exchange!

Postby scrovak » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:20 pm UTC

__jess wrote:Heh, 'reviled'. That's one of those typos that makes the sentence way better.


That it did!

@Zohar, I was thinking people would take pictures of whatever sorting offices their package went through, whatever customs offices (since they'd probably go through there too, right?), and post those in the thread too
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