December 03, 2004
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Publication Date: Friday, December 03, 2004
What a teen wants
What a teen wants
(December 03, 2004) The top gifts on local teens' wish lists
By Robin Lanam
The maroon knit sweater. The unopened Barbie in the closet. A card saying "Merry Christmas," signed by the name of a barely known relative. We've all received gifts that we don't care for, or even gifts that we wish we never got.
But gift-giving is hard, too. Parents and grandparents sometimes don't even know the interests of their children or grandchildren. Even friend to friend, we teens aren't psychic -- we don't always know what to buy each other. So, I decided to go out with some of my friends and ask Mountain View teens at school and around town what they wanted for the holidays.
Most of the results aren't surprising. Out of about 120 people we talked to, 19 asked for clothes.
As Russell Geronimo, a junior at Mountain View High School put it, "Clothes, dude, hecka yeah."
But you shouldn't go out and just buy any random piece of clothing. Think of your recipient. What does he or she wear? Eight people we talked to wanted toe-socks, the popular socks that resemble mittens for the feet.
Next to clothes were CDs and IPods, Apple's sleek digital music player. About 17 people wanted a CD and 18 asked for an IPod. One guy specifically asked for the new Subliminal CD. Another teen asked for two specific CDs. And two others wanted a CD player rather than a CD.
Other survey results ranged from books, to a new watch, good food and reinstating the hockey season. One person doggedly told me that he wanted a laser printer. Another told me he wanted a digital camera, and luckily, his grandparents already promised him one.
A few people asked for superpowers, and a few more for a puppy or bunny. Other notable items included chocolate, spray paint, a pie, a box, a gift card for clothes, a man (or a relationship), a pomegranate, a bow and arrow, no stress, video games, yarn, beads, a lump of clay, a plane ticket, respect, a good report card, sleep, a car, a swimsuit, nothing, a purse, a pizza, makeup and drum cymbals.
After taking this survey, I have concluded that the only safe way to go is money (which got nine votes) unless you know that your recipient will take offense. Another safe way is to give a gift certificate, such as from a mall where it could be redeemed at a variety of shops.
If you don't want to give money, then watch your recipients carefully. Note what they wear, what they say they like and don't like. If you really can't tell, ask them to make a list. Then choose one or two items to buy them. That way, you will be sure it's not an unwanted gift.
Ten of those I talked to thought of more than materialism of the holidays; they asked to spend their holidays with their family. Even more of them, 25 to be exact, sincerely asked for loving companionship, in the form of a man, a puppy or bunny, or even a "hooker." And one person asked for world peace.
These are the type of people that reflect the sensitive side in all of us and show that we care about the people that surround us during these happy times. It's why we go through so much trouble to give nice presents, too.
Robin Lanam is a junior at Mountain View High School.
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