When I thought up this rant, I was just going to discuss Christmas wrapping paper, but as I'm listening to the dialogue in my head, I realize I have a lot more to say. So the Twitter-length rant is: I'm not buying any more wrapping paper. So all of you readers with the attention span of a gnat can just stop right here. That's all you need to know.
For everyone else still paying attention, I have long debated with myself about buying Christmas wrapping paper. I think wrapping paper is a huge waste of paper, and ink, and plastic wrapping, and well, just a huge waste of resources. And this is from someone who actually appreciates wrapping paper (ask my sister! She actually wrote an essay on the agony of watching me slowly and carefully unwrap my Christmas presents. If someone's going to take the time to cut the paper and tie on ribbons, I'm going to appreciate it, dammit!). And thus the internal tug of war: I don't want to waste a huge amount of resources, and I don't want people to think I didn't care enough about them to use fancy gift wrap.
Additionally, I try really, really hard to do a thoughtful job of gift shopping. Would (fill in name here) like this? Would they use/read/play with this? Am I buying them this because I think they would like it or because I feel obligated to get them something? Don't get me wrong. There are many times when I draw a huge blank on what to get people. I try to do my Christmas shopping when I see something I think someone will like, no matter what time of year it is. Unfortunately, I've had a totally uninspired year this year. So right now, Dad, you're the only one with a gift. It is only November, though. And Sis, yes, I found something I think you'll like. It's environmentally friendly, is packaged WITHOUT plastic, and is nearly, but not quite, as boring as dirt. But you'll probably use it weekly and it will make you feel good about your choices, so you're getting it. Even though there is no way you could even fake enthusiasm about it.
I do own some wrapping paper. Mostly because I buy it at Costco, so I could probably wallpaper my house with it. Also, I've been saving the Sunday comics, because, well I love getting gifts wrapped in the funnies. It's like a bonus: a present and the comics! I even re-use "lightly-worn" gift wrap from prior years. Finally, my environmental bents really aren't aimed at driving my hubby batty (although he might argue otherwise!), so it's entirely possible (albeit unlikely) that hubby will go out and buy you wrapping paper and try his hand at the whole ribbon-tying thing.
So if you're getting a gift, I've thought about you. If' you're getting a card, I've thought about you. If you don't get a card or a gift, either you're off the list, or I don't have your address. And that's all there is to it.