The madness of Christmas shopping!

Christmas is definitely upon us along with all the madness that surrounds this time of year. But what does madness look like?


Yes, that looks like me pulling my hair out when Christmas is around the corner and we have presents to buy. And not just any presents. I’m talking about ‘the one’. You know ‘the one’. The one present that up until two days ago was not on anyone’s radar and there were plenty of them in a variety of stores. Then yesterday happened. All of sudden anyone who’s anyone now wants one and you can’t find one on any shop shelf or online.

‘What was this item?’ I hear you cry.

It’s a mini portable printing machine. It’s so small you can carry it around in your handbag and easily print off selfies or group shots from your iPhone or android. (A bit like an old Polaroid) Unless you are a teenager or a professional photographer you may not even have heard about it but it seems that my daughter is not the only one who has expressed an interest in purchasing this vanity affirming item. Hence the lack of stock.

This year my husband and I decided that our children would each receive one main present from us as well as the usual pyjamas, books and chocolate goodies. I can now not get my daughter that one main present. As you can imagine yesterday was not a good day. And this is where the madness sets in.

So what do I do now?

  • Option 1: Go to all the shops and see if they are actually lying about not having any in stock and hoping that someone has saved one especially for me.
  • Option 2: Fly to the US and go to all the shops and see if they are lying …(you get the point!)
  • Option 3: Build one myself. (I thought that was what 3D printers were for?)
  • Option 4: Stop getting so hysterical (it’s only a present) and make myself a cup of tea.

Obviously the correct option is number 4 (although I so want to do option 1…madness!)

Madness sets in and makes us do crazy things at this time of year. Having recently seen Shakespeare’s play ‘King Lear’ at the Old Vic (Glenda Jackson was amazing!!) it made me question the whole idea of madness.

We think of mad people in asylums, institutions, the weird person on the bus. But we are all capable of acting in a mad way and it is surely our common sense, our grasp of what is normal that helps keep us sane and stops the madness before it goes too far. King Lear swayed by flattery and nonsense couldn’t see his loyal and obedient daughter right in front of him. He didn’t trust his common sense and his ill judgement sent him mad.

I am not talking about mental health issues. Large organisations and charities are making huge steps in identifying mental health issues and opening up this taboo subject at long last.

The madness I describe can be summed up by the latest tweet I read today. ‘Rock on sale for $85’

Did my eyes deceive me, just as King Lear’s deceived him?

No. Nordstrom (online) are selling rocks in leather pouches. (They have some cheaper ones at $65, if that’s just ridiculous!) There are product reviews and free shipping. And people are buying them.



Actual real people are buying rocks in pouches. Not diamonds or precious stones but Los Angeles rocks. Why? I don’t know but I expect it’s because they can. In a time when there are so many struggling to eat and clothe themselves, some people prefer to spend $85 on a rock. Now that sounds like madness to me.

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