So appropriate, and at the right price.

Whether you dropped half a million in your TIAA-CREF or are standing in line for free cheese this holiday season, you may be looking for ways to cut back on your dispensation of holiday cheer, while still letting your friends and colleagues know that you’re thinking about them.

Enter Shite Gifts for Academics, my new favorite Facebook app. Devised by someone named “Michael,” you can choose from a wide array of thoroughly appropriate virtual gifts, from an “overbearing, maladjusted colleague” to a “crappy office chair,” a “vengeful student evaluation,” an “idiot chairperson,” “condescending IT guy,” “colleague who knows Robert’s Rules of Order by heart,” a “4-4 load,” or a “windowless office.”

You do have to be on Facebook to use the app. Your students can use the app to send you gifts as well. You can create your own gift app, or use some of the other great gift apps out there. (Yes, Virginia, two of my faves are the “Send Che” and “Send Power to the People” apps. As your holiday gift to me, we’ll pretend you already made your “if wishing made it so” joke.) There’s already a gift app tailored to a particular academic discipline: “Shite Gifts for Computer Scientists.”

Not all are flavored with irony, outrage, or weary amusement at our collective folly–you can also send an earnest “enthralled class.” Which, whether you’re on Facebook or not, is my holiday wish for you. Solidarity, M






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