Sonic and Tails wish you a merry Christmas! Also, Tails is gay.

As you are undoubtedly well aware of, the Christmas season is rapidly approaching us, throwing out multicolored lures of festive lights, tree decorations, and cheery packaging. Yes, that's correct, we here at Something Awful are already concerned with Christmas even though it's 323 days away! We're simply trying to get a little preemptive jump on all the other major media outlets, most of which are currently reporting on Batboy's noble fight against Osama Bin Laden and his army of killer cyborg chefs. We're nothing if not a groundbreaking media empire that leads the industry in fashionable and hip trends; remember that whole "wearing your hat sideways" phase America went through for roughly 19 days? We started that. Remember when it was "far out" and "way cool" to install RAM-doubling programs on your computer? Yup, that was us. On second thought, I don't want to take responsibility for that. I'll instead claim that was Drew Curtis' Fark's fault (you now have to include the "Drew Curtis'" part or else people will think you're talking about Tom Hanks' Fark), the site that is to blame for space nerd Wil Wheaton's emergence from space nerd obscurity where he was previously setting phasers for "retarded, boring e/n site." Not that I have anything against Wil Wheaton or his wonderfully painful website; I feel that if I was a highly advanced space nerd from the future like Mr. Wheaton, I would be living in a magically futuristic society that has abolished racism, solved world hunger, and created peace by forcing unruly people to read space nerd e/n updates about my friend's birthday or going to eat lunch with my space nerd wife. Then I'd get back into my Chewbacca outfit and sign autographs for people wearing Spandex jumpsuits and Vulcan ears that they bought off eBay.

But alas, this update is not about space nerds or countless "FRANCE SURRENDERS" jokes. It is about preparing for the holiday rush of the Christmas season, a time when all bets are off and action is in the cards and all jokers are wild. In fact, this time is so crazy that both the jokers AND queens are wild! How crazy is that? It's like 50 pounds of craziness stuffed into a 20-pound craziness bag! And since when did a bag weigh 20 pounds? That's crazy by itself! Set phasers for "crazy," Wil Wheaton.net! Let's take a look at some of the more popular gift-giving ideas for this Christmas season so you too may be well-versed in the most hip and happening shit to hit a webpage since "hello my future girlfriend!"

It's the Christmas gift that works on oh so many levels!

Pet In a Pet (toy) - One of the most precious and charming gifts to give a child is the joy that only a pet may bring. The present of a dog or cat will instantly cause the eyes of your young son or daughter to light up light up like flaming wreckage from the Challenger. However, many parents have struggled for a way to wrap their pet like any other Christmas gift under the tree. Stapling paper to a dog causes him to yelp in pain, especially when you get to his testicle region. Applying tape to cats is about as difficult as can be. This is the notion behind the ingenious idea of Pet In a Pet, the Christmas gift that keeps on giving Christmas gifts that keep on giving more Christmas gifts that might possibly even keep on giving!

The dedicated men and women at Pet In a Pet process your order by hand, skillfully choosing the best pets to serve your children's needs. Then they take another pet of a different, unwanted type (such as "mangy polecat," "wild dog with rabies," or "Wil Wheaton") and murder it by using their patented State Og Murder-O-Tron machine. The animal is then skinned, hollowed out, and its internal organs are used to lubricate your next oil change. After a rigorous "sitting around and downloading porn" session, the Pet In a Pet employees carefully and respectfully cram your desired pet or pets into the rotting carcass of the skinned animal, at which point it is sewed back up and placed in an action pose. When you arrive back home with your Pet In a Pet in tow, your child will see the unwanted pet and feel the powerful emotion of severe disappointment. Then, after the pet inside manages to claw and tear its way out of the exterior pet's skin, your child will immediately perk up and feel sheer bliss as they realize you actually bought them the pet they wanted! If you really want to get your kids accustomed to "real life," you should then murder that pet and say "THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS TO EVERYTHING YOU LOVE IN LIFE!!!" while frantically waving your arms as if you're trying to signal a touchdown to somebody 17 miles away.

The "deluxe" model of Pet In a Pet allows the buyer to choose a living animal to be placed inside an animal carcass placed inside another animal carcass, enabling new levels of customization that were previously unknown to mankind and most major alien races.

RonCo's Wireless Home Networking Router (computer equipment) - Ron Popeil, founder of RonCo and president of the Coalition for Men and Women Against the Saucer People, has moved into the field of consumer electronics with the invention of the RonCo Wireless Home Networking Router. Instead of concentrating on PC-to-PC connections however, the RonCo Router connects various RonCo products to one another, allowing them to seamlessly interact with each other in ways you never expected or wanted to expect! Ever dreamed about a can of GLH Formula Number 9 being applied to your balding head after your Showtime Rotisserie Oven Model 4000-T is finished cooking your dinner? You can now! Hook your RonCo Bagel Cutter up to your Dial-O-Matic Food Slicer and turn your kitchen into a slicing slaughterhouse of the damned with a mere flip of the switch! And no, we don't know what switch! Imagine the look on your potential wife's face when your RonCo Pocket Fisherman activates your Automatic 5-Minute Pasta and Sausage Maker... from over 400 miles away! She'd look surprised as all fuck! Maximize the potential of your RonCo products the fast, easy, and safe* way!

* NOTE: Government officials have legally prohibited us from using the word "safe" to describe this item.

Radiohead: "Live From the IntellectualDome" (music video) - Pretentious pop / anti-pop / pseudo pop band Radiohead was filmed live at the Saint Louis IntellectualDome, where they were accompanied by a string quartet, an entire brass section, and twelve hillbillies that played homemade instruments ranging from the washboard to the jug. Thom Yorke and his band of hipster doofuses play a variety of their hit songs aimed at art major college students, including the upcoming singles "If You Don't Like This Song Then You Don't Get It and You Are Stupid" and "My Art is Deeper Than Your Art." The crowd expresses their approval by holding up their expresso coffee cups and flashing the lights on their SUVs. Yorke concludes his live performance with a stirring rendition of "This Song is 50 Thousand 16th Notes."

The new version of ICQ has more options than ever!

ICQ Version 21927371292783.1928276365 Q (software) - The newest release of popular instant messaging software ICQ is the most exciting and bloated version yet, offering thousands of new features that you never even knew you wanted, at the tiny expense of being a 14 gig download. Along with "improvements" made in ICQ version 2001b, such as randomly changing the font of your ICQ history to Wingdings or causing the entire program to crash when you try to open it, ICQ Version 21927371292783.1928276365 Q offers the following remarkable features and improvements:

"Advertisement not found" errors now appear in menus, popups, and on your desktop.
"Add me to every porn list ever created" option available and is on by default. There is a way to switch it off, but the programmers don't remember how.
New icons and smiley faces. Most of these were drawn by their in-house resident artist who is coincidentally the CEO's nine-year old son. The new emoticons express such useful things as "contempt," "writhing pain," "happy because I just got to go to McDonalds," and "sad because daddy wouldn't buy me an apple pie at McDonalds." Don't worry if you'll ever use these emoticons... the pictures associated with them don't really make any coherent sense anyway!
Default sound scheme for new installations is entitled "man chewing glass."
Seamless integration with your OS insures that every time somebody sends you a message, your active window will close and be replaced by a flashing 500-point block of text that reads "YOU HAVE A MESSAGE, CRETIN" while air raid sirens go off.

This looks to be the most exciting and original ICQ version since that version that made the little typing sounds every time you pressed any key, which was an absolute stroke of genius in the "let's all annoy our coworkers" department of thinking.

Aphex Twin: "Muqtyl'loopy DaMcHooqulawawaquey" (music CD) - Richard D. James is back with his latest electronic / experimental CD set, which includes 438 discs and over 2,300 tracks. Aphex Twin takes a jump into the most surreal and creative soundscape ever, including such songs as:

"Clue Cloo Lande" - Two minutes of a homeless man hitting random keys on a broken piano while James applies a highpass filter at random times.
"Marz'a booq Doo Daa Dayee" - 20-second piece of birds chirping while a Minimoog is bashed to pieces by falling construction equipment.
"Thee Nootey Pero Fez'or 2: Thee Klumphz" - A five-second bassline loop is repeated for twelve solid minutes while the sound of playing cards hitting a lawnchair plays in the foreground.
"Horque Dorque" - As the most dance-friendly song on CD 261, "Horque Dorque" presents the listeners with a gritty, distorted drumbeat accompanied by a 28 different analogue keyboards playing 28 different notes on 28 different resonance settings.

This CD is already a smash hit with the demographic of people who think they're smarter and more cultured than everybody else because they listen to unlistenable music that everybody else listens to.

"Please Laugh at Me, I'm an Old Man and It's the Only Joy I Get in Life" (DVD) - Leslie Neilson stars in this comedic tour de farce about a 200-million year old man who attempts to stumble and bumble his way through one of the wackiest jewel heists since that one jewel heist where the three cops were killed by automatic gunfire. Sight gags and clever puns are served up fast and furiously, as evident in the scene when the police chief says "let's get some of our boys on the case" and then the camera cuts to two fat police officers laying on a briefcase! Get it? It's funny because he said one type of case, yet the film showed another! That's comedy for you! The movie has a parade of fantastic, one-second cameo appearances by other washed up media "stars" who are so unhip that they're hip again such as Joyce Brothers, Mr. T, Erik Estrada, and Wil Wheaton.

Everybody is a winner when you go goth!

Goth! The Board Game! (game) - Compete with friends and family in one of the most fast-paced and exciting board games ever! Race against foes in the challenge to become the most goth of any player while avoiding such pitfalls as jocks, well-dressed sane people, and ignorant sheep who have never heard the deep and meaningful lyrics of Marylin Manson. Each player starts out the game with zero Misery Points, attempting to be the first person to reach total and complete abject patheticness. The winner receives a jug of white pancake makeup with a little black tear decal to iron onto their face. Roll for such bonuses and setbacks as:

Goth poetry. Create award winning pieces of prose like the ever popular goth poem, "Tears of Sorrow (Fuck Jesus)":

Oh the tears of sorrow
I cry down my face.
My heart is a black raven of pain and neverending misery that nobody can understand but people who wear NIN t-shirts and have dark purple hair,
The football team will die tomorrow.

Goth makeover. Jump 15 misery points by applying a thick coat of plaster sealant to your face and making yourself look like a clown who was just hit by a paint truck.
Goth jewelry. Spend the $20 you made in one week by pushing grocery carts at the local Wal-Mart, allowing you to buy the finest in jewelry made out of what seems like recycled bike chains. The more you look like a deleted scene from "Hellraiser," the better. And no, people aren't laughing at you... they're laughing in UTTER FEAR OF YOU!
Mutate into raver. If you're not careful, you could become a raver and lose 500 misery points! Watch out who you hang around with and what drugs you take, or before you know it you could be wearing "PLUR" t-shirts and sucking on a pacifier while some bloated girl with enough whiteheads to single-handedly sustain the entire Clearasil market hangs on you and tries to lick your ear.

Wow! Can't you just imagine the pain?

I hope these fantastically hip and fantastically fantastic gift ideas have given you some idea as to what to purchase your loved one this upcoming Christmas season. After all, you only have 323 days until the holiday bites you on the ass like that doughy Mexican hooker last October! The items on this list are the hottest things this year, and you can be sure that when your fat ugly child parks his ass on the mall Santa's lap, he'll be naming at least one of the aforementioned gifts. If you don't believe me just ask the mall Santa, Wil Wheaton in his hottest acting job since the grand finale episode of "Star Trek" where Han Solo fought the Minbari commander!

– Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka (@lowtax)

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