Giftmas 2021 – THE PREGAME

This is intended for a) previous participants to discuss what they enjoyed or struggled with in either Giftmas: Origins, Giftmas II: Electric Boogaloo, Son Of Giftmas, Giftmas IV: Friendship Is Magic, or Fifthmas, and b) folks considering participating for the first time to ask questions. I’ll update this header’s FAQ as needed.

Do not use this thread as an introductions/”let me list everything I like to help out my potential giftee” thread – I’ll see about getting one up once giftee assignments go out.

Giftmas sign-ups will be available Friday, 10/1 and will close at noon CDT on Monday, 10/11.


  • What in the heck is a Giftmas?
    • Basically it’s The Avocado’s birthday and Winter Holiday Of Your Preference rolled into one. We started doing it five years ago to celebrate the one-year anniversary of The Avocado’s existence, which happened to be December 4th (the full name of this Most Holy Day is Giftmasiversary). The date has floated to the first Sunday in December, as Sundays seem to be more manageable for people to spend all day refreshing a page on the internet. This year, it’ll be December 5th.
  • But… why the sign-ups then?
    • So we do this really fun gift exchange, basically like Reddit Secret Santa except way cooler because we all at least kinda know each other and have overlapping interests. Check out last year’s exchange thread if you want an idea of how it went.
  • Whoa, that’s pretty cool. Are there, like, rules?
    • Kinda:
      • There’s a $25 cap and homemade gifts are encouraged, that way hopefully cost is less of an issue.
      • To that end, you can specify both your shipping and receiving preferences, to minimize cost as much as possible and to maintain whatever level of privacy you’re comfortable with.
      • You have to get your gift to your giftee by Giftmas, so realistically, December 3rd or 4th at the latest.
      • In the event there is someone you would not be comfortable giving a gift to/receiving a gift from under any circumstances, there will be a place to note that and I am the only one who will ever see it.
      • No swaps once giftees are assigned.
    • That’s more or less it.
  • But how will my gifter know what to get me? What the heck do I get my giftee? STRESSBALL
    • So there is actually a section in the form to list both the things you’re interested in (e.g. Dr. Who, early Regency literature, the musical stylings of Barry Manilow, etc.) and any restrictions or specifics (e.g. shirt size L, nut allergy, not Barry Manilow’s 1978 masterpiece Even Now because I already have 5 copies, etc.). Plus, we’ll do at least one wish list / gift idea brainstorming thread and an introductions thread, so you can comment-history-creep your giftee to your heart’s content.
  • Look, I’m newbie and I just feel like I’ll be stepping on y’all’s toes by participating. Maybe next year.
    • That’s totally fair! But you should know that every year we have a good number of newbies participate and a lot of folks sat out who later said they regretted not participating. Honest, even new folks tend to find value in Giftmas, and it can be a great way to feel like you’ve become part of the community pretty quickly.
  • Still, I feel weird sending any personal info to a stranger on the internet.
    • Also totally fair! FWIW though, I’m a data scientist by trade and, in addition to being well-versed in PII (personally identifiable information) data protocol, I fully destroy my spreadsheets after they’re no longer needed. And unless Jeff Bezos wants to give me the reins to his fortune so I could literally end world hunger in exchange, I will not be sharing them with anyone.
  • Oh okay, that’s pretty legit. So, if I sign up, when will I find out who my giftee is?
    • Depends on how busy Jaye’s life is, but probably later that Monday (10/11) or sometime over the weekend.
  • Neat! I have more questions! 
    • Post them here or, if you have a question you’d like to ask privately, email me at avocadogiftexchange (at) gmail (dot) com.