Gift Suggestions for Geneaholic Care-Givers
By H. David Morrow FuzzyGem@worldnet.att.net
© H. David Morrow ~ December 5, 2004
With Christmas and Chanukkah approaching, here are some items you should consider buying for the geneaholic care-giver on your list. These items don't do anything for the geneaholic's illness, but should make life easier for care-givers and/or relatives.
The Subject Kit- this consists of a tablet of lined paper, a six inch diameter cork stopper and a two sided, four-pound mallet with a rubber head on one side and an end-cut oak head on the other. The instructions state that family members write, on the aforementioned tablet, a list of subjects they want to hear about instead of the family's genealogy.
Whenever the geneaholic changes from one of the listed subjects into genealogy, the care-giver is supposed to put the cork stopper into the geneaholic's mouth and hammer it home with the rubber head of the mallet. Should the geneaholic somehow dislodge the stopper, a family member uses the mallet's oak head on the geneaholic's head. NOTE: While any number of hits are allowable when using the rubber head, the instructions call for one sharp blow (no more!) when using the wooden part of the mallet.
The Subject Kit assures you that all the further family arguments will be about living relatives instead of the long-ago departed. In other words, you'll be having family fights over Uncle Joe's drinking and Aunt Sally's shopping instead of g-g-g-grandfather's horse stealing.
The Computer Disabling Kit- this consists of a special remote unit (can be used from 100 feet even through walls and doors), a steel-headed mallet and a five pound magnet. (Batteries are not included, of course!)
Imagine this: the entire family is gathered at the geneaholic's house waiting for the holiday meal. The traditional turkey or ham is sitting in the oven... which you-know-who forgot to turn on. (In my house, the traditional meat has been replaced by hot dogs and hamburgers, because they can be easily prepared by my Geneaholic Wife's care-giver... me.)
Despite the crowd of her relatives in the living room, my geneaholic is still sitting in front of the computer looking for surnames in census records. In order to get things moving, I take out the remote unit and signal the computer to shut down. Even with the computer off, some geneaholics will not believe it is inoperable. They keep turning it off and back on or furiously pressing the reset button. Unaware of the real problem, the geneaholic will finally turn to the care-giver to fix it or find someone who can. Of course, while the care-giver is pretending to fix the computer, dinner is, finally, being cooked.
If this doesn't get dinner started, it's time to use phase two of the kit. While trying to entertain the geneaholic's bored relatives, the care-giver or spouse shows them his or her juggling skills. Using the steel-headed mallet, a leaf blower and the framed photo of the geneaholic's favorite grand Uncle, the juggling show begins. Before the assembled and admiring crowd, there's a slip-up; while flinging the mallet into the air, the care-giver sends it flying into the computer monitor screen. Accidentally, of course!
If a geneaholic is still sitting in front of the computer, the flying mallet may cause some slight head injury. Hey, that's show biz! Simply call 9-1-1 and all can sit down to dinner... while the geneaholic is being treated in the Emergency Room.
Phase three of the kit involves the use of the five pound magnet. (Did I forget to tell you this is disguised as a replica of a famous statue? Sorry!) Simply gift wrap the statue, paper and ribbon are included in the kit, and give it to the geneaholic as something to dress-up the computer CPU. Naturally, the magnet will wipe out all the information in the geneaholic's hard disk and he or she will have to stop working on genealogy. When the computer's empty, the oven's full!
The final item, The Luxury Jacket (Straight) is for the geneaholic to wear when he or she becomes lost... especially in a cemetery! This jacket is made in a rich brown suede fabric with gold-toned hardware and can be personalized.
The front is embroidered with the following:
Caution- Geneaholic NOT at work.
May turn violent.
If found, please call 555-0000;
ask for (Care-giver's name).
You may order the embroidery in any contrasting color of your choice. Sizes range from extra small through medium gigantic. Allow three weeks for delivery. The initial price includes a new 37 inch high definition television set. After all, the care-giver has to have something to watch while the geneaholic is missing.
As a final inducement, each purchaser gets a year's free postage in order to have the lost geneaholic mailed back to the care-giver. Whoever finds the geneaholic simply ties his or her legs (the geneaholic, not the finder) with a full roll of duct tape (the jacket manufacturer has kindly attached a roll of duct tape to one of the gold-toned buckles) and leaves the geneaholic by the nearest Postal Service mail box. Geneaholics are usually too large to just be inserted into the mail chute!
The ever-accommodating mail carrier person takes the immobilized geneaholic to the post office and puts the right postage on his or her forehead. In a few days, usually less than a week, the subject will be delivered back to the care-giver.
So, you see, this holiday season is the perfect time to give something useful to the care-giver who, you must remember, is performing a service to you, too. After all, if the current care-giver ups and leaves... you'll have to take care of the geneaholic!