The so-called “Extremely Online” are a special breed, and by that, I mean they’re lunatics who may be a danger to themselves and others. Their tastes are so warped that they may not respond as hoped to traditional gifts, and for that reason, I’ve been asked to log out of my social media accounts for five minutes to tell you what your terminally plugged-in friend would actually like to unwrap this holiday season.
And no, not a stupid NFT. Just forget you ever read those letters.
We’ve got the goods right here.
Coffee Mug of Their Favorite Post
If you happen to know the particular scene your internet-addled pal belongs to, then maybe you have an idea of what their favorite meme is. Odds are, they also stay quite caffeinated in order to keep up with preferred subcultures, so a killer reference on a coffee mug would make them light up like 20.77 Bitcoin (approximately $1 million as of this moment). You can customize a mug with anything from a @dril tweet to an orb-pondering joke, a semi-truck pregnancy photo or a green line diagram. Never heard of any of that stuff? Congratulations, you’re on the right track.
Blue Light Screen Protector
Trust me when I say your friend’s eyes are slowly disintegrating. They play it off as “strain” or “a headache” or “disassociating,” but the path of the digital samurai exacts a physical as well as mental price. Do them the kindness of care they’d never think to show themselves: Buy literally anything that keeps the harsh light of a smartphone or laptop from frying their retinas. It’s just a matter of time before their optometrist recommends it anyway!
Astrology Book (Pro- or Anti-)
You honestly can’t log on in 2021 (or 2022, for that matter) without the basics of astrology under your belt; it’s a lingua franca of the virtual. You either “vibe” with the stargazing or you don’t, but never fear, there are books appropriate to the earnest enthusiast as well as the hardened cynic and scientific rationalist. No matter what angle on the cosmos they prefer, you can arm them for the next comment feud on Instagram. Always helps to sound like you know what you’re talking about! May the Force be with you, or whatever.
I can’t tell you the spinal trauma I’ve endured by trying to lie in bed reading every last notification on my phone before getting up in the morning. And god knows how many people drop a device on their face each day doing exactly the same. For the app-addicted acquaintance who needs a little support — and a more comfortable way to scroll when they should’ve gone to sleep hours ago — consider this memory foam husband pillow with a microplush cover and adjustable/detachable headrest. Your meme-brained recipient will probably joke about wanting a “wife pillow” instead, so be prepared to act like that’s a really clever line.
Patch of Real Grass (For Touching)
You don’t want to throw a full-on intervention for your buddy who can’t seem to tear their gaze from their TikTok feed. That’s understandable. But you can still give them a gentle and necessary reminder to stay in contact with the natural world. Why not tell them to “touch grass” with a nice kit they can use to grow their own wheatgrass in a sunny window? Yeah, I know you’re supposed to eventually put this stuff in your diet smoothies, but one step at a time here — you’re dealing with an indoor kid, after all.
I happen to believe a toilet stool is a universally perfect gift — everybody poops, after all. Yet the person who can’t even take a break from the timeline when nature calls is practically begging for one. In fact, it might boost their Twitter output. Give them this handsome bamboo model and see if they don’t disappear into the bathroom to compose a 50-part thread while acclimating to the revolutionary new setup. The only problem will be trying to get a turn yourself.
Shrek 2 on Blu-ray
In the streaming era, owning your media is a sign of prestige. It shows you care about art enough to take a role in preserving it in the best possible format. An extremely online friend may look puzzled at first upon opening a Blu-ray copy of Shrek 2: Why Shrek? Why now? Why the sequel? But this confusion will inevitably give way to high mirth and the urge to watch the film right away. Bonus points if they’ve never seen the original. It makes no difference what corner of the web they’re into — I guarantee they love Shrek content. They just can’t help it.